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Discussion Starter #1
2001 CRV : At almost every start up when turning the ignition key there is a loud grating noise. It happened when I first got the car in August, it went back to the dealer--used car- and they checked it out . They said it was not the starter, nothing was loose. They said it was in the exhaust system. This was at the 29th day of 30 day warranty, of course, and the owner who was the only one there to authorize repair was on a short vacation.

I took it to a Honda accredited shop (not sure if that is the proper term) due to the transmission not shifting properly. After a needed transmission fluid change and a new catalytic converter it shifts properly and I did not notice the loud noise. It sounds like grating but I can see nothing obviously loose. It only makes the noise when I start up, goes away very shortly., and does not make noise until the next time I start up. Maybe they car in motion noise covers up any noise made, but it would be loud w enough to hear plainly I think. Any ideas where to look?
 

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My first guess would be the starter. It’s super easy to get at on the automatics. Sits right on top of the transmission. Pull it out and have a look at the gear and make sure it can move in and out freely.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
That was my first guess since it seems to be there only when turning the key and shortly thereafter. But the mechanic said otherwise, and we know they never err! Worth checking into-how hard is it to get to?
 

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If it happens only when turning the key, there's definitely something wonky in the starter. You can take it to most chain auto parts stores and they can test your battery and starter for free if you're looking for an easy second opinion. Also, if this is a new to you 2001, it'd be worth replacing the rear diff fluid if that hasn't been done recently. Really easy to DIY.
 

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If I remember right all you have to do is take the air box off and it’s right underneath on the top of the transmission. Takes about ten minutes to swap one.
 

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The sound you are having reminds me of the one I was hearing on start up of my 2000 CRV. The starter would always work fine but omitted a alarming sound that would leave shortly after. In a effort to save the OEM starter which by the way is rather costly and avoid settling for an auto store rebuilt one, I took preventive measures. The removal of the starter as stated earlier is not that difficult. I took the starter to automotive electric rebuild shop. I explained to them that the starter works fine but for sure needs cleaned and greased. The cleaning and inspection only cost 30.00 and the sound has never returned. Extending the life of the OEM starter was my reason for the action but curing the sound was a nice plus. You might consider doing the same. Even if it is not the source of the sound you have added life to a very costly starter.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
The sound from the drivers seat sound like it is at the rear of the engine, somewhat centered which could be the starter. But is sounds like from something bigger, but know a loud noise does not necessarily mean large object. Now to find an iPhone app that will investigate and fix the problem, for me!
 
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