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Why does my 2007 Toyota Hiace make a whistling noise?

Asked by Mamin

My Toyota Hiace 2007 makes a whistling noise when pressing the accelerator pedal. What could be the problem?

Answered by CarsGuide

11 Nov 2020 David Morley

I’ll take a stab in the dark here and suggest that your van is a turbo-diesel (there was a petrol version offered as well, but the diesel was much more popular). If that’s the case, you could be dealing with a turbocharger that’s showing wear. Specifically, this is likely to be in the turbo’s bearing which will become noisy (and potentially emit a whistling noise) as the bearing starts to degrade. Turbochargers often spin at speeds of up to 250,000rpm, so the bearing really has its work cut out.

The clue to all this is that the vehicle starts whistling when you press the throttle; that is, when you place a load on the engine and ask the turbocharger to start providing boost. That’s when the worn bearing becomes loaded (and noisy). But you could also be looking at something much simpler such as an exhaust that has collapsed internally and is offering a whistling soundtrack, or even a loose piece of intake plumbing that is also allowing the air passing over it to whistle. Perhaps there’s something in the gearbox that is making a high-pitched noise as well. You really need to have the vehicle looked at by somebody who knows their HiAces and take it from there.
 

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