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Discussion Starter #1
The van (250k miles) is passing water from the pump area and the valve cover area is clacking despite the oil dipstick showing full oil after an over heat event.

Oil light turned off after changing the oil (old oil did sparkle a bit).

Air won’t blow hot (going to remove the thermostat to see if that is the issue).

The only engine code was a P0117( engine coolant temperature circuit low)
 

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If you are not getting heat you are either low on coolant and/or have an air pocket in the system. The other possible cause of no heat is a water pump failure or a bad thermostat. Is there oil in the coolant or coolant in the oil? There isn't a lot you can do about a noisy valve train other than to ensure proper oil level and viscosity.
 

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Discussion Starter #3 (Edited)
The oil looked normal apart from some sparkles. I didn’t see any oil in the coolant. I had thought about using the HF oil pressure tester on the cam oil pressure switch/sensor to confirm they are getting oil.
The valve cover noise only started after the over heat event.
 

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It's not unusual for increased noise after an overheating event, things get warped and stressed.
 

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The van (250k miles) is passing water from the pump area and the valve cover area is clacking despite the oil dipstick showing full oil after an over heat event.

Oil light turned off after changing the oil (old oil did sparkle a bit).

Air won’t blow hot (going to remove the thermostat to see if that is the issue).

The only engine code was a P0117( engine coolant temperature circuit low)
If you are going to remove the thermostat, have a new OEM one + new O-ring handy and put it in.
No sense in having to do it later since you are already doing the labor.
Check the heater control valve in the engine bay, between the engine and firewall and pretty much centered. It may be stuck or perhaps the cable is not working properly. You can manually unlatch the cable and open (turn) that valve to see if the heater now works.
Do you do regular oil changes with high quality oil of the recommended specs?
Last time valves were adjusted or timing belt and water pump changed or a complete anti-freeze change.
Best of luck.
Buffalo4
 

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Discussion Starter #6
So I found the source of the over heating issue. The water pump had seized. I replaced it, the timing belt, timing belt tensioner and the thermostat as well as the coolant ( with the Honda recommended stuff). The over heating is gone, but there is still noise coming from the valve covers.

As far as oil, we use Penzoil 5w-20 High mileage or Valvoline 5w-20 High mileage. I am embarrassed to say the last oil change was about 8 months ago. No idea when the previous timing belt or water pump was put on. No idea about when the valves were adjusted.

I do know that the valve covers did not have a clacking noise before the overheat event, and after they did. Also the overheat event occurred after an hour long drive to the next city over, the van usually just takes me to work and back (4 mile round trip).
 

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If the valves haven't been done before they are do anyways and that could potentially quite them down some but like I said previously it's not uncommon for the valve train to increase in volume after being overheated. You could a compression test, cylinder leak down test, test for exhaust in the coolant, coolant system pressure test and probably a couple more I can't think of if you really want to but I would probably just keep an eye on the oil and coolant to ensure they don't become contaminated or that there levels don't change.
 

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The oil looked normal apart from some sparkles.
If you saw sparkles in the oil, you lost some metal out of your engine... it is likely toast, or nearly so. You may be lucky and it might be replaceable parts (crank/rod bearings) or is could be catastrophic (spun bearings, cam journals, etc.). Oil filters are not perfect, and bypass dirty oil in some circumstances (they have internal bypass valves). If the 'sparkly' oil circulated for any length of time, you ruined the whole motor.

-Charlie
 
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