CarTalk.com Blogs Car Info Our Show Deals Mechanics Files Vehicle Donation

Piston slap?

My 2002 subaru forester is making a loud noise that the dealer says is “piston slap.” The dealer says that it will cost $3,000 plus to fix it. The dealer also said that, as long as I don’t mind the noise,the car could keep running for years.



Does this make sense? Should I really just ignore it?

Piston slap was around in the non turbo 2.5L for a couple years. I don’t believe it has any longevity issues with their engines, just annoying if ID’ed correctly. The dealer should be well experienced in the symptom(s).

If the loud noise goes away after the engine runs for a short time, then it could be piston slap. If the noise continues after the engine runs for a short period of time, then there may be a bigger issue.

Tester

the noise is definitely worse when just starting/cold weather–