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Just bought a 2000 vr6 with an engine rattle. I picked it up from a shop for cheap but it was at the shop due to the owners bringing it in complaining of a engine noise. Shop (not a VW shop just a general fix all) diagnosed the engine as bad. I drove it home and the noise definitely didn't seem to be a lower end knock.

On my way home i stopped by two different friends houses who are both mechanics. One who specializes in VW the other in all german. Both said, 'no way this motor's bad. Techs diagnose bad intake shift rods all the time for bad engines. Go buy one.' So I did. Replaced it and the engine still rattles to high hell in the top half of the engine.

It also has a bad miss. I pulled all plugs, plugs seem fine, checked every wire for spark, all have spark. Motor has 144k. Other than missing and the rattle, the motor seems to rap hard through all RPM but no power. The rattle is LOUD and constant through all RPM and increases in decible when revved hard. Definitely not a low end knock though.

Also checked timing chain which is fine. I'd rather not replace coil pack unless I know its positively bad. Dealer won't take a return once i open it and its a 130 bucks. Is there a way to diag a bad coil and any ideas on top half engine rattle.

Im leaning away from a bad valve because its a constant sound and not an occasional pop. Maybe a lifter? Any ideas on diagnostics without having to pull top half of engine apart or is that my only choice?

My buddies don't have a lot of time to help me due to their own projects so here I am. Thanks so much for your help! :confused:
 

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Well, you already said timing chain is fine. Thats what it kind of sounds like to me. Everything I read says that the timing chain needs replaced around 105k. If its not and snaps or starts to go bad that you will find yourself replacing the motor. My friend had this happen to him.
 
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