Skip to main content

Every time I accelerate my 2009 Ford Ranger XLT there is an annoying whistle sound. I need some advice on where the sound could be coming from. – Anis

That’s not much to go on, but here are my thoughts. As opposed to a clunking noise, which would likely be suspension related, a whistle usually indicates an air leak. Since it occurs while accelerating, this would lead me to believe that you have an issue somewhere in the intake manifold or corresponding air-intake ducting system.

An intake leak will allow unwelcome, unmetered air into the engine. If your check-engine malfunction light is also on, does the powertrain control module (PCM) have a P0171 or P074 code stored? This indicates the PCM has detected an incorrect fuel-to-air ratio because of the air leak, supporting this theory.

Story continues below advertisement

Additionally, check the exhaust system, as not all exhaust leaks result in the typical noisy rumble. While your mechanic is under the truck checking the exhaust, have them pay particular attention to the catalytic converter. A partially plugged converter will lead to excessive backpressure and may cause a small upstream exhaust-gasket failure.

Along with that, be aware that whistling sounds can sometimes be confused with high pitched scraping noises. Use this tip to differentiate between the two: Scraping noises, such as from a wheel for example, will increase with road speed, but air/exhaust leaks change with engine speed.

Lou Trottier is owner-operator of All About Imports in Mississauga. Have a question about maintenance and repair? E-mail globedrive@globeandmail.com, placing “Lou’s Garage” in the subject line.

Shopping for a new car? Check out the new Globe Drive Build and Price Tool to see the latest discounts, rebates and rates on new cars, trucks and SUVs. Click here to get your price.

Sign up for the weekly Drive newsletter, delivered to your inbox for free. Follow us on Instagram, @globedrive.

Report an error Editorial code of conduct
Due to technical reasons, we have temporarily removed commenting from our articles. We hope to have this fixed soon. Thank you for your patience. If you are looking to give feedback on our new site, please send it along to feedback@globeandmail.com. If you want to write a letter to the editor, please forward to letters@globeandmail.com.

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff.

We aim to create a safe and valuable space for discussion and debate. That means:

  • Treat others as you wish to be treated
  • Criticize ideas, not people
  • Stay on topic
  • Avoid the use of toxic and offensive language
  • Flag bad behaviour

Comments that violate our community guidelines will be removed.

Read our community guidelines here

Discussion loading ...

Cannabis pro newsletter