8 Best Oil Additives to Stop Engine Knocking (and Lifter Noise)

Motor oil is a necessity for engine functioning, lubricating moving parts, reducing friction, and preventing sludge build-up. However, as engines advance, standard oils may need a bit of help and this is where oil additives come in (they enhance the oil’s properties and address specific engine issues like knock and that annoying ticking sound which is likely lifter noise).

But oil additives are not all the same and many are simply a waste of money. Keep reading to learn which oil additives actually do what they say (for the most part) to stop engine knock and noisy lifters fast.

Top 8 Best Oil Additive Products

In our quest for the best oil additives, we’ve learned they’re not a magic fix for engine issues. Though they obviously won’t replace the need for proper maintenance, these wonder-workers can enhance your car’s performance and longevity.

1) Sea Foam SF16

best oil additive for lifter noise

There’s good reason why Sea Foam SF16 is one of the most popular oil treatments around. Regular use of this versatile fuel and oil additive often delivers noticeable improvements to vehicle performance and efficiency.

Whether an everyday commuter or classic car, Sea Foam seems to work some magic by cleaning deposits and preventing buildup. Machines simply run better with less grime and gunk getting in the way.

While not exactly a miracle cure for stubborn mechanical issues, Sea Foam’s preventative maintenance benefits can potentially save much more in repairs down the road. For non-professional mechanics, application is a breeze – just add it to the oil or fuel. Despite the premium price tag (its popularity has driven up cost over the years), you’ll get peace of mind knowing your engine is well cared for with this mighty yet straightforward ally against knock and lifter noise.

2) Archoil AR9100

best oil additive to stop engine knocking

Archoil AR9100 is an excellent oil additive, especially for diesel engines. When you add Archoil to your vehicle’s oil system, the difference is clear – it runs quieter and those pesky cold starts become less of an issue. You’ll likely wonder how you’ve gone so long without this treatment that brings noticeable smoothness to engine performance while helping alleviate problems in older diesels.

And it’s not just for diesels either – try it in your gasoline engine, differentials, and power steering system and get the same benefits. There’s reassurance in knowing this additive helps extend the life of your engine.

Yes, it’s a bit of an investment, but you often get what you pay for. If you’ve got a high-mileage ride that’s showing its age, Archoil AR9100 is worth a shot. While it may not resolve all injector problems as claimed, and a 16 oz bottle might not be enough for multiple treatments, you’ll likely be impressed by how much of a difference this makes, especially if you’ve been dealing with frustrating cold start issues.

3) Liqui Moly Cera Tec Friction Modifier

quiet noisy lifters

Discovering Liqui Moly Cera Tec is like giving your car a new lease on life. Add this German-made additive to your engine, and the difference is palpable – a noticeably smoother response, as if your ride whispers a grateful “thank you” with every rev.

Seeking a quieter engine, try it in a high-mileage vehicle that’s seen better days. The difference can be striking, with significantly reduced noise and a revitalized perceived strength, dialing back the odometer in feel. Lifter noise and knocking essentially goes away within minutes of Cera Tec being introduced into your engine.

As gearheads, the price sits higher than we may like, but consider it an investment since fewer mechanic trips and improved gas mileage can provide future savings.

4) Lucas Heavy Duty Oil Stabilizer

oil additive to quiet engine noise

This Lucas Oil additive whispers thanks through quieter engines after treatment. There’s satisfaction in smoothing out machines that have logged hard years. Consider it a well-deserved spa day for your car, with the bonus of extended time between oil changes – wallet-friendly for sure.

Now, be warned that on chilly mornings, this stuff flows thick as gravy, requiring patience to pour. But that viscous cling to engine parts means robust protection. While you may still notice some noise initially at cool startups, it fades quicker than before. Not a cure-all, but subtle gains add up and are nice to have, instilling confidence you’re doing right by your ride.

This versatile gunk reducer enhances lubrication quality across multiple engine types, though may prove too thick for very cold conditions. Nonetheless, smoother running and hushed engines reveal an overall boon.

5) BG MOA Oil Supplement

treatment for engine knocking

Adding BG MOA brings an almost immediate improvement – smoother runs plus no more irksome lifter ticks on cold starts. It’s as if this additive grants a new lease on life, especially for those stretching oil changes.

Expect a sense of security, like an invisible shield protecting parts from wear, even under brutal stop-and-go conditions. While pricier than some additives for the amount you get, consider it a wise investment… maintenance over repairs.

This oil enhancer reduces sludge buildup for cleaner operation while remaining compatible with various engine oils. And during extended change intervals, its engine protection shines. True, pre-existing issues may persist untouched, but this ounce of prevention equates to a pound of cure down the road. Specific benefits can be tough to quantify minus testing, yet smoother, lasting rides reveal major benefits.

6) Rev X Fix Oil Treatment

best high quality oil treatment

Made in Michigan, REV X Stiction Fix Oil is designed to improve the performance of vehicles by addressing stiction (sticky friction due to burnt oil) issues. Users have reported smoother starts and reduced smoke during quick acceleration, indicating an enhancement in engine responsiveness.

The treatment is appreciated for its ability to help with sluggish acceleration, suggesting that it can restore some lost power and efficiency to the engine. While many users (myself included) have experienced significant improvements, it’s important to note that it’s not a miracle product and your actual results may vary.

But for my Ford Excursion with the 6.0L diesel engine, it feels like the day I bought it. Much easier starts on cold mornings and zero injector noise. Haven’t seen an effect on gas mileage in my case but other users report improvements.

7) Liqui Moly 2009 M0S2

Liqui Moly MoS2Adding Liqui Moly MoS2 into an engine grants a fresh lease on life. Expect a softened rumble and newfound acceleration smoothness whether idling in traffic or cruising the highways. That irreplaceable peace from a purring engine is pure comfort.

While initially skeptical, owners of aging engines become believers thanks to renewed responsiveness – it’s as if the years shrugged off. And the benefits intensify even through high RPMs without filtering clogs. Now vehicles already in prime shape may notice less dramatic gains. However, consider it wise preventative upkeep for prolonged engine integrity.

Expect some initial driving before the full noise-quieting effects set in. At a slightly higher price point, Liqui Moly MoS2 earns its keep through improved performance and protection – those essentials for enhancing an engine’s enduring operation.

8) Prolong Engine Treatment

Prolong engine treatmentPouring Prolong Engine Treatment into an aging ride brings a welcomed hush; that soothing quiet of turned-back clocks underneath the hood. It instills confidence that essential protections are now in place to keep vehicles on the road longer.

This additive goes beyond, demonstrating responsive performance even under high strain when engines get pushed hard. While not necessarily a dramatic overnight miracle, particularly in newer cars, there’s no denying the long-view gains. With time, the full range of benefits emerge – smoothed operation, noise reduction, and enhanced integrity.

Granted, some alternative options cost less. But given the measurable improvements in ride character plus proven effectiveness without abrasive particles, Prolong justifies every dollar. Reasonable expectations net realistic gains.

Although not every vehicle may qualify, for compatible engines, it unlocks that blend of protection and power for squeezing out more lasting miles.


44 thoughts on “8 Best Oil Additives to Stop Engine Knocking (and Lifter Noise)”

  1. i hav a 89 isuzu pickup,4cyl,5spd 214k on motor,all fine but just started having a bottom end knock .a rather loud and steady knock,,what is any other opinion other than rod knock and is there anything to do to make it last a little longer without going into motor

    • See if you can use a mechanic’s stethoscope to see where the sound is coming from. Verify the noise is from the bottom end. You may be able to take off the oil pan to inspect the rods if you’d rather not disassemble the engine.

      I’ve heard some folks say running a thicker oil can help, but that would very much be a temporary solution. It could even make things worse in the long run if you’re running too thick of an oil. I’ve never tried running thicker oil to prolong a knocking engine, so I can’t recommend it.

  2. Hi ,I have an Audi A4 2005 model that the engine was done but ,when I just start it ,it’s quiet but after driving it for some few minutes the sound change and it’s showing me a oil light,and also when you open the oil cup there is smoke coming from there . I’m thinking maybe it’s could be a light oil that I did used,can I change to a thicker oil. Thanks for the advice

  3. I have a 1997 Mitsubishi Eclipse non turbo model, it started knocking few months ago and I parked it since. Almost 100% it is a rod knock. I’m planning on fixing it but to get it to a machine shop I will have to drive it there and then pull the engine due to my living situation and not having a truck. What would be a good additive to reduce chances of damaging the engine further to get to a shop 2 hours from where I live.

    • Short answer, there is none. Driving with rod knock is likely to cause further wear or possibly catastrophic failure if you try to drive 2 hours with that issue.

      This is assuming it is in fact rod knock. How did you arrive at that conclusion?

  4. 2013 Range Rover evoque 2.2 sd4
    Engine knocks on idle when cold.
    Depressing and raising the clutch causes a bit of a scraping sound.
    Car did have a split intercooler pipe for a while until we got it replaced.
    Does this mean the cylinder wall and pistons may be damaged or unlikely to be caused by that split intercooler pipe being left as it was for a good few weeks?
    Car was serviced a couple of months ago inc oil change but oil also looks a bit thin – and seems to be over the max marker.

  5. Sean; I bought a 2009 charger from my nephew. When you start it first thing in the morning the oil light comes on. After a moment you can turn the motor off and restart it and the light will go off. No tapping or knocking. Motor runs and sounds good. Could this be from dry starting and could an oil additive possibly help?

    • How long does the oil light stay on?

      I would test the oil pressure with an oil pressure tester such as this one on initial startup. That will quickly tell you if the problem is electrical (such as a bad oil pressure sensor) or mechanical (such as a bad oil pump).

      If the oil pressure test reveals a not so stellar result for a couple seconds after startup, check your oil filter to make sure it has an anti-drain back valve. This valve keeps oil in the filter when you turn off the engine, and not all oil filters have one.

      If the motor sounds good, chances are it’s not mechanical but I would want to be certain before driving it around like that. Lack of oil noises are pretty distinct and they don’t sound great. When you listen to the engine, it’s best to do this outside the car with the hood up so you can hear any knocking even if it’s subtle.

  6. I have 2011 GMC Acadia has a loud knock it kept going to limp mode so I changed the throttle body and fixed the limp mode isn’t coming on anymore but now I have a loud know that sounds like it may be a piston what can I do to determine if that is actually what it is

    • You could grab a mechanic’s stethescope and see if you can pin down where the knock is coming from. Can you tell if it is a top end or bottom end noise?

  7. hi i have a 2011 rav 4 and i think the chain is clinking loudly, can these additives help at all? it’s got 90,000 miles on it

      • Hi i have mk6 golfR i hear engine ping ob low rpm between 2/3k rpm after that i dont hear any ping.. also this only happens when the engine is hot! Any sugestions?

      • Are you sure it’s a ping and not a rattle coming from something like a loose heat shield? Rattles are often only present in a narrow rev range.

        If you’re worried about ping, I would monitor the engine in real time with a scanner and see what the knock sensor and timing parameters tell you. You may see knock there, in which case you are right that it was an engine ping. If not, I wonder if there is something loose or rattling that is causing the noise.

  8. I have just purchased a 2009 chevy avalanche LTZ with a 5.3 liter V8 vortec and it had i light lifter sound when it was cold when i would first start it up but as soon as it would warm up it would go away and then i got an oil change and put mobil 1 full synthetic with a mobile 1 filter as well but now the lifter tick got worse because now its not only there when its cold but also after being warmed up but i mean i noticed that rite after the oil change and i was hoping the oil change would make it better not worse and then i took it to the mechanic and he is now saying it sounds fine my question is should i have one quart of oil drained and put a quart of Lucas heavy duty oil stabilizer in it ? .. And also the idle isnt perfect it will drop a bit and go back up ( not too bad ) but its not a perfect idle but the thing is that its not reading a misfire wich leads to my other question should i give it a full tune up ? .. Please help someone

  9. Hi Sean

    Need advice which oil to add

    My car is quiet when i start hes up. but the moment engine temprature goes up engine loose oil pressure. For now I would like to use an thicker oil under higher temprature

    Many thanks for your advice


    • It’s generally best to stick with your vehicle manufacturer’s recommendation for oil viscosity. If you are losing oil pressure, it is likely you have an underlying issue that will need to be addressed.

      Are you seeing an oil pressure warning, or do you have an analog oil pressure gauge that drops as the engine gets warm?

      It’s normal for oil pressure to drop a bit as the engine warms up. As to whether or not this is in spec for your vehicle, you will have to consult the owner’s manual or factory service manual.

  10. i have a 2015 kia forte koupe ex that i have had a lot of issues with. i had to get the engine replaced a while ago because it ran completly out of oil way faster than it should have and no one told me the ticking from my engine was bad. i learned from that mistake really quickly and have been super paranoid about every sound my car makes ever since. it started ticking again about 2 weeks ago and people keep telling me that it sounds fine but i dont know. i hate to take it in to have it looked at again because of how many times i have done it but every professional i have talked to says its a problem with the oil or the pistons. whats yall opinion

    • Sounds described as ticking could be caused by anything from harmless high pressure fuel pump noise to a bottom end rod knock. If you have any doubt, I would get it checked out to be sure it isn’t serious.

      Some places may lend you their ear for free if you need a second opinion. If you want to have the new engine inspected, you will likely have to pay a bit of money (around $125 or so) to have them go through the engine with a mechanic’s stethoscope for more detail.

  11. We have a2004 jeep liberty that recently started making rhythmic clicking noises which seem to be on par with about a 1/16th note, but this only happens as you are pressing the gas pedal. If you are going down hill and your speed is accelerating but your foot is completely off the gas, the noise stops. Any idea what this may be or what may help it?

  12. I have a 2016 Kia Soul 1.6 liter with 120,000 miles. The motor burns oil which these motor are known to use oil. I use 5w-20w Quaker State full synthetic and Lucas heavy duty oil Stabilizer. Should I be using a better oil and heavier oil weight and is Lucas a good product for my problem.

  13. Can this eliminate fuel knock? I had to use 97 octane for the fuel knock to stop. The problem. Is that my engine’s compression ratio is just 10.5:1. It is supposed to be fine using 91 octane, but it isn’t the case.

  14. I have a tapping noise in my 2012 Kia Forte…135,000 miles. What engine additive would be my best bet to buy to virtually eliminate the tapping noise?

    • Depends on why it’s tapping. I hate to break it to you, but an additive probably won’t fix the problem. I’d have it inspected at a shop if you’re concerned about the noise. Some cars need a valve adjustment depending on the type of lifters they have. Other cars just have noisy lifters.

      Some factory service manuals will specify how much valvetrain noise is considered normal. It might say something like: “if you experience lifter noise for longer than 10 minutes on startup, replace X”. If you have a factory service manual on hand, check it out and see what it says.


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