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Mazda CX-9 Problems



  • gahogsgahogs Posts: 15

    Thanks for sharing. In response to your question, I still have the engine knock problem and am going to take it into the dealership for a third time to try to repair the vehicle.

    On the first trip to be serviced, the dealership said it was the brake booster connect rattling. While this made absolutely no sense to me, I let them have their chance to repair the problem. As you may expect, this did not fix the engine knock. On the second trip, I decided to be more proactive, and printed out the TSB pertaining to loss of power up steep hills. I had hoped the reprogramming of the codes would help the engine, and if I were lucky, would eliminate the engine knock. Unfortunately, this did not fix the problem either.

    As for the noise, it definitely sounds like classic engine knock and occurs every time the throttle is applied when the engine is under load. The knock routinely occurs in two circumstances:

    1. Going up a steep hill
    2. Trying to accelerate when the automatic transmission has it in too low of a gear.

    It also seems to be a little more evident/obvious when the vehicle is cold; however, once the vehicle warms up, the engine knock does still occur. It does NOT occur when driving on level terrain, regardless if the engine is cold or warm (or at least it is not loud enough to hear inside the cabin when driving). Of course when driving on level terrain, the engine is not under much of a load either.

    Similar to you, we did not notice the engine knock for the first few months we owned the vehicle. That is something I would have immediately picked up on, particularly when test driving the vehicle. The symptoms did not develop until we had driven the vehicle a few months.

    As stated above, I plan to take the vehicle back to the dealership a 3rd time. Thanks to everyone who has replied since I posted my original thread a few weeks ago. As I posted before, all I can offer from my end is that the first time I took it to the dealership they did offer the passing comment that another CX-9 had been taken in to be serviced reporting the same problem. Based on some of these replies, perhaps this problem is on a larger scale than just this thread. Perhaps it only applies for a certain period of vehicles coming off the line.

    I will keep everyone updated on my developments. Please do the same.

    Also, jeebert2: Thanks for the update. Hopefully the VVT actuator is the fix (a long term fix in particular -- it will be interesting to see if you develop the same symptoms after driving a few months, as I originally experienced in my vehicle). I will pass the VVT actuator information along to my dealership. At $2K per vehicle, that is a hefty repair charge. If this is on a larger scale, Mazda could have some problems with costs being that high to repair vehicles that experience this problem.
  • bonan2bonan2 Posts: 3
    Mazda serviced my engine noise last week. Tech rode with me so I could replicate for him. My engine noise shows up at 1600 rpm fairly consistently but is difficult to hear with other noise sources around. Anyways, tech heard it a couple times. He called mazda tech help. They pointed out the brake booster plate rattle that has been mentioned in this forum before. The procedure calls for another fastener to better afix the plate to the firewall. Even with this additional fastener there was still metal on metal rattle. He took the plate off to further isolate...noise seemed to go away. So we decided to put foam (w/ adhesive of course) between the brake booster plate and the firewall so no more metal to metal contact. This seemed to do the trick eliminating the noise/rattle. But, liked I said the noise is difficult to hear esp. with other exterior noises. For now this is my fix. I will let everyone know if it returns. This link describes the repair (1/5/2009):
  • jmailjmail Posts: 19
    I had the 2007 cx-9 touring (no bells) for about 18 months and for the most part am very happy with it.

    Recently, my fan has been going on at full blast as soon as I shut the cx-9 off. It seems to be from the center console housing the rear AC controls/vents. I have not yet taken it in since it occurs sporadically so it's pretty much impossible to replicate at any given moment. I have tried to change settings before turning the cx-9 off so I can try to figure out the cause, but I have been unable to figure out if it's being caused by certain settings. I saw an earlier post where the relay was burned and that was causing the issue. Has anyone else had the issue or any new diagnoses? Will mazda cover the fix?

    I also have a lot of wind noise from the driver door. You can hear it from about 30 mph and up. I know there was a recall a while back for a door issue, and I supposedly had that fixed, but I still hear the noise. Any one else have the issue or any thoughts?

    I plan on taking it in to the dealer, but I would like to have as much background info as I can before I do go in.

  • cericceric Posts: 1,093
    The door recall was for the door stopper, not for noise if I remember correctly for 2007 models.
    The A/C issue (full blasting) has been reported. Some electrical problem for sure. You should take it to dealer. If CX9 is within 36K, there is no reason that dealer won't fix it. Some dealers even give you a loaner for repair works.
  • cdlmazdacdlmazda Posts: 2
    Have a 2008 CX9 with around 16,000 miles. Noticed lately that when I drive over speed bumps, turn wheel while pressing brake and/or driving over bumps in the road at certain speeds, that I am hearing and feeling a knocking sound in what feels like the front right strut or brake. What could be the problem?
  • jeebert2jeebert2 Posts: 5
    I have a 2008 with just over 18K. I had the same thing recently. I checked underneath and found that an end link to the front sway bar was loose. One of the nuts had worked its way loose. I tightened it and all is good now. If that is the case with yours you need a 17mm wrench, but you also have to have a 6mm hex key in the middle of the bolt to hold it while you tighten the nut.

  • k1200k1200 Posts: 40
    Same here... Mine is a 2007 about 43k on it... I never abused it at all, I like the vehicle but , boy have i had some issues. That knocking noise, had a tech ride with me. He said he did not hear anything. went to another dealer... all they did was put lithium grease on anything that moved (did not help) I am not going to bad mouth the car or the techs, I do think most of them are really good, but so many times I got the run around and the electrical problems, the cd player, the ac, the interior fan that came on when you shut the car off.......... argh :-(
  • cdlmazdacdlmazda Posts: 2
    Thank you so much for your reply!!! I was about to take it in on Tuesday to find out what was going on, but thanks to your reply I found the problem. It was not the end link or any loose nut, but it was 2 grape size rocks/pebbles that had found there way between the sway bar and the frame....unbelievable! Thanks to your reply I was checking the link/sway bar and just happened to notice the rocks.

    Thanks Again.
  • gahogsgahogs Posts: 15
    Folks / Update

    Unfortunatley, we are still having problems with the engine knock / rattle.
    (very good recording of engine knock / rattle noise can be found at link below)

    I have taken it to our dealership three times with no luck in fixing the problem. On the last trip, the dealership kept it for about a week and a half and concluded they could not hear the problem. They told me they had Mazda reps drive in and could not hear it either. Overall, communication to me from the dealership was very poor, but that is another story for another day. I told them I would record the noise.

    So now I have the entire thing on video, as well as a very good recording using a USB microphone fixed under the hood. For those that are interested and think they can help, you can get the recording as an attachment in my post here (noticed Edmunds doesn' t allow attachments beyond an image; otherwise, I would have just uploaded to this message):

    I contacted Mazda Corporate through their 800 number earlier this week, but I have not heard anything from them since that time. They did mention they would call me to coordinate sending some folks out here to ride in the car. They said to not contact the dealer and to wait for them. I told them I had a perfect recording and video and happy to share to help them diagnose the problem, but again, I haven't heard anything yet.

    My questions are:

    What to do next?
    Does Mazda back their vehicles and support their customers?
    Any ideas on what the noise could be?
    Anyone else with this noise (some have chimed in here - thank you - is this the same noise you heard on your vehicle)?

    Any and all help / advice VERY much appreciated.
  • rudiorudio Posts: 2
    My engine tap does not seem to be as bad as yours, yet? I brought it in for service 4/20/09. I was told the tap is the fuel injectors. I was told they "loosen up" after a while...nothing to worry about. Not so sure about that. I will keep an eye on it.

    I did have the airbag recall fixed.

    Mazda knows about the rear fan going on when the car is shut off. There is a part to fix it but it is on back order.
  • gahogsgahogs Posts: 15
    Rudio: All I can offer from my problem is that it has gotten progressively worse. Hopefully your problem is unrelated... ?

    Also, I did hear from Mazda Corporate today. They are sending out a regional technical specialist on Tuesday to look at the vehicle. I have provided him with a copy of the recording and will provide him with the complete DVD + full recording on his arrival Tuesday.

    I will continue to keep everyone updated on my progress.
  • k1200k1200 Posts: 40
    First let me say that was a very good recording.... im not a tech and i definitely heard it. When this happens, is there a loss of power ?
    Could be a few different things... valves, rings, something thats called "piston slap"
    I hope it is something that can be resolved without much inconvenience to you. I personally have had my own issues with my vehicle, and to this day continue to have on going issues. I dont know why they cannot be resolved. I do like the vehicle..but I cannot stand the fact that every 2-3 months im in with the same or more issues. I will probably sell it in a few months
    good luck keep us informed
  • gahogsgahogs Posts: 15

    Thanks for the thoughts. As for loss of power -- we no longer experience any, yet the engine knock/rattle remains.

    On the second submission to the dealership, they uploaded the updated codes with the TSB related to the loss of power. I was hopeful this would remedy the knock / rattle as it occurs when the vehicle is under load, but unfortunately it did not. The recording was taken after the codes were updated in the vehicle.
  • cericceric Posts: 1,093
    The TSB on "Loss of Power on Climbing Hills" is merely setting the ATF temperature limit to a higher value so that it does not go into safe-mode so readily and easily on climbing hills. It has NOTHING to do with engine at all.

    Wish you the best of luck in finding the cause and fix it. Keep us posted here.
    I am betting on the VVT cam.
  • shokshok Posts: 2
    I noticed the leak when I did my first oil change at 3500 miles on the passenger side (right side) of the engine. First I thought it was an engine leak (oh no!). This is a brand new CUV, and hearing others CX-9's problems, it looks like I made the wrong decision, I hope not. I was thinking of getting MDX but it's about 10k more. And I heard a lot of good things about the CX-9 being compared to MDX and QX7. I'm a bit concern because I live 150 miles away from the closest MAZDA dealership. I took my CX9 for repair and saw the job report on the computer which cost almost a $1k replacing the Power Steering Pump. It took a day to repair but was provided with free transportation. It's a hassle knowing each repair will cost me gasoline and 300 miles on my CX9. I love my CX-9 and so far, that's the only problem I had. I already drove my CX9 to South Dakota and California with no problem. I live in Colorado. It holds well in snow as it was snowing hard in the mountain when I brought it home new. Im not too concern about the vibrating side mirror, I did notice it, but my focus is what's ahead of me. Im concern about Engine related problems.
  • cericceric Posts: 1,093
    MDX? Honda has a serious transmission issue. My friend called me the other day about his failed transmission on his Odyssey @ 70K miles.
    Mine Odyssey's AT was shot at 80K with all services on schedule w/ Honda dealers. Honda is still learning how to made transmission. 5-Speed? When the whole world is moving to 6-/7-/8-speed.
    I am glad you did not choose QX7. Audi is not exactly know for relibility. Check the ConsumerReports. CX9 is rated mostly red with 1 black hollow circle (means average in hardware). On par with most Toyota vehicles.
    Mine had a window styrofoam issues. Other than that, perfect after 16000 miles.
  • gahogsgahogs Posts: 15
    Engine Knock Update:

    The Mazda regional technical specialist came to my house on Tuesday and rode up the hill with me. I used the same setup (video camera inside vehicle + USB Microphone underhood), and we got another clear recording of the engine knock (multiple occurances). He is now comfortable with the problem and is working with Mazda engineering for a solution. He is going to coordinate a trip back to my house with a Mazda engineer to try resolve the issue with my vehicle.

    As for the problem, here is a preliminary diagnosis for those that think they may have experienced similar problems:

    Turns out the CX-9 has a knock sensor, which is not uncommon in modern engines. However, and based on my understanding, the knock sensor in the CX-9 doesn't activate until the engine is warm. So there is potentially an operation window by which the CX-9 runs without the benefit of a knock sensor controlling the engine knock (window of time being from the moment the vehicle is started until the time the thermostat opens and the operating temperature is reached, denoted by a reading halfway between the C and H on your temperature gage).

    If your engine has the same problem as mine and driving on level terrain while the engine is cold, you probably won't notice a problem; however, when the engine is under load, like when going up a hill (can even be a relatively slight hill) and if the engine is cold and has the same problem as mine, there is an opporutnity to hear engine knock. In my case, since my engine is cold when going up a sustained hill, the engine knocks substantially (listen to the recording on my original post above). Once the engine is warm (i.e. turning around and driving up the same hill again once the thermostat is open), the noise is less noticeable as the knock sensor is activated and trying to do its job to reduce engine knock.

    As for the second observed failure mechanism (i.e. the brief engine knock noticed when cresting small hills, regardless if warm or not), that could be by design. For better engine efficiency and more power, some vehicles are designed to operate near the detonation limit (limit at which engine knock occurs). Only Mazda knows how much they pushed that limit for the CX-9. If the engine is warm, and in the case of my CX-9, this results in periodic knock throughout any routine drive when under load as the knock sensor kicks in and adjusts (retards) the spark timing slightly to supress / eliminate the engine knock. I found this very surprising. The USB microphone really tells the tale, as there were multilple instances the microphone picked up on engine knock that lasted about a second or two well after the vehicle was warm, just to have the knock go away due to the function / operation of the knock sensor. Again, I was surprised how often the USB microphone picked up on the knock after the engine was warm -- many more instances than I could hear / detect when inside the vehicle driving; however, I was able to detect a few of them, as supported by my verbal acknowledgement of the engine knock recorded on film while driving the vehicle, which coordinated very well with the clear instances of engine knock recorded by the USB microphone. Naturally all of these instances occured when the vehicle was under load.

    The problem with engine knock is that it represents abnormal combustion, which can lead to problems ranging from loss of power to a reduction in engine life. For those that are interested, I thought this article explained engine knock and knock sensors fairly well:

    That is the latest. I will keep everyone updated on my progress.
  • cericceric Posts: 1,093
    If knocking is indeed the issue, you can try octane 91 for one tank, and see what will happen. If it goes away or improves dramatically, then knocking can be confirmed. Then comes the question: how come other people don't have it (like me)? I get on highway within 1 mile from my house. Hard acceleration is needed to get on it and the merging is short (i.e. get to 65mph pronto!).
    You have may a bad knock sensor in one of the cylinders (or more).
    Keep us posted. Thanks.
  • ewsncewsnc Posts: 14
    Unfortunately my still new 2009 CX-9 GT (with only 3k miles) has developed a faint, metallic knocking noise and its audible when the car goes over rough roads. The occurrence is sporadic but 100% associates with road irregularities. Had a dealer checked out but couldn't find what causes the noise. They tightened up sway bar bolts (even they were not loose) as suggested in this thread and even other suspension bolts (not loose either) but didn't help. Anybody has similar experience/problem?
  • k1200k1200 Posts: 40
    I have a 07 CX9 and yes there is a knocking noise when you travel on roads that are not smooth. Now I do expect to hear some noise, but it almost sounds like the lugs are not tight. (they are) They even replaced the shocks /struts at 5000 miles, this did not help. The front brakes still make a loud click every time you pull off or go to slow down. And as I have said before I do not abuse my vehicle at all, and I am the only driver. Even the tech guy laughs when he see me with my vehicle...other than regular maintenance i bought the vehicle in FEB 07 and for all the problems i had, I was there 5/9/07 11/13/07 11/13/07 11/20/07 2/26/08 7/16/08 9/11/08 9/15/08 10/27/08
    these were all problems that had many visits to the dealership...........
    drivers seat adjusts by itself while driving,
    turn off the car the internal fan comes on full blast for 6-7 minutes no matter what time of year it is ....killed my battery twice
    loud clicking noise with brakes,
    knocking noise front end all of the time
    turn off the car the drivers side window goes down
    cd player needed to be replaced (2 days after delivery)
    front rotors had to be replaced 3 months after delivery
    I am not making this up, I guess I got the one that was abused at the assembly line. Hanging on to it until the winter, then I will sell it or trade it for something else. Its a shame, cause I know Mazda make very reliable vehicles, my brother has one and has no problems...... oh well
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