Things to check if you hear clunking from your suspension - Page 6 - TCCoA Forums

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post #151 of 187 (permalink) Old 05-31-2013, 08:33 AM
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Shock bolt on the back is tight as it can be, the top on the rear seems tight also seems like its spinning and can't get tighter, i had a friend hold the bottom bushing on the outside to keep from spinning while I tightened the bolt inside. I put Bilisteins in the rear and can count 6 threads, can't get it any tighter. Is there something better to hold to keep it from spinning?
There should be either a hex head or at least flat spots on the stud where the nut goes on the top mount. Hold that with a wrench to prevent it from spinning. Sounds like you need a torque wrench. You need to tighten these parts ASAP, especially if you're driving this car.

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post #152 of 187 (permalink) Old 01-29-2014, 04:01 PM
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Front end issues

For some reason whenever I make a sharp right turn with a little bit of speed, I hear a growling noise from the front passenger side and the car seem to want to understeer really bad. Also when turning left at WOT the steering seems to sort of seize up for a moment. I have replaced pretty much everything on the front end about a year prior to these occurrences. Any ideas of what might be the cause?

Also to add after rack and pinion was replaced a year ago, one of the bellows was cut open do to miss handling by the alignment shop. I replaced that bellow about 6months ago. Could something be cause the rack and pinion to bind?

Thanks in advance.

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post #153 of 187 (permalink) Old 01-29-2014, 05:34 PM
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Have you changed the upper ball joints? They break after 100k like clockwork. I would not drive one of these cars beyond 100k on the stock upper ball joints. And thats a pair that has been lubed properly. Also check the torque on the front frame bolts. This is why I started this thread a few years back!

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post #154 of 187 (permalink) Old 01-29-2014, 07:53 PM
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I have changed upper control arm and ball joints. But I have not checked the frame bolts. I will look into that.

Thanks Phil

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post #155 of 187 (permalink) Old 01-29-2014, 08:27 PM
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Wheel bearings are another thing that comes to mind. Easy enough to check them for play with the weight of the car off the tire.

Something else to check would be the strut rod bushings, assuming they weren't replaced.

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post #156 of 187 (permalink) Old 01-29-2014, 10:14 PM
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I have changed upper control arm and ball joints. But I have not checked the frame bolts. I will look into that.

Thanks Phil
You will need a big reverse torx to do the job. They take about 90 ft. Lbs. They are almost always loose if they were never re-tightened since new. Will not fix steering issues but usually greatly reduces clunk noise when you hit the brake.

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post #157 of 187 (permalink) Old 01-29-2014, 11:19 PM
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The subframe bolts are E-18 and for what it's worth I've had 7 or so MN12's and never have I had that problem.

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post #158 of 187 (permalink) Old 01-30-2014, 10:46 AM
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Thank you all for your responses. Wheel bearings have never been changed and don't seem to be loose. Strut rod bushing have never been replaced and I already know they need to. I'll double check everything once the weather gets better. There is still a lot of snow and ice here in Atlanta. Will update as soon as I can. Thanks.

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post #159 of 187 (permalink) Old 02-18-2014, 02:42 PM
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So I replaced the bad lower control arm which had worn bushing and bad ball joint. I also replaced strut rod bushing to the control arm and checked to verify that the sub frame bolts were tight, and they were. I went and got an alignment to day and it drives better but I have a popping noise when making turns with the steering wheel turned to the limit either way. The sound occurs on which ever side of the direction you turn in. Before i replaced the parts it was only in reverse that i got this popping sound. Now i get it in drive or reverse. I also feel it in the wheel when it pops. It seems to be something that rotates because it happens repeatedly as long as i have the wheel turned all the way and the car is in motion.

To add to this , I noticed when the mechanic was driving my car whenever it popped, i notice the wheel (not steering wheel) jump forward.

Mechanic could not determine the cause, any help would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks,

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post #160 of 187 (permalink) Old 02-18-2014, 02:47 PM
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I also replaced strut rod bushing to the control arm
You didn't replace the front ones to the frame?

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post #161 of 187 (permalink) Old 02-18-2014, 02:57 PM
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No i had the plastic ones so i wanted to try and get my hands on the rubber ones. plus the ones at the frame appear to be in decent condition.

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post #162 of 187 (permalink) Old 02-18-2014, 03:22 PM
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So, do you have the plastic bushings on it now?

Is the wheel moving like this?

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post #163 of 187 (permalink) Old 02-18-2014, 03:47 PM
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No I have the original bushings on the frame. And i am not able to move my wheel like that, its pretty solid.

Thanks for replying

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post #164 of 187 (permalink) Old 02-18-2014, 04:00 PM
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The wheel moving forward is usually a dead giveaway the strut rod bushings are worn out. If you've already replaced the ones at the control arm, the ones at the frame are probably worn out from the inside where you can't see them. Other than that, make sure all the nuts and bolts are torqued to spec.

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post #165 of 187 (permalink) Old 02-18-2014, 04:22 PM
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Thanks, I appreciate your advice and I plan on changing those soon. I'm no expert when it comes to suspension, but I just wanted to reiterate that the popping sound, if you can picture in you mind, happens only while the car is in motion with the wheel turned all the way either way. (Its almost like there is a piece of metal extrude at any arbitrary location on the wheel and when I turn the wheel all the way, that piece of metal hit the upper control arm once through every complete rotation of the front wheels.) It happens most of the time but not all of the time. I guess it depends on ground level. Not to say that I know thats not the cause, because I don't. I just want to make sure that every piece of information is closely examined.

Thanks again

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post #166 of 187 (permalink) Old 07-28-2014, 09:35 AM
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My front end put me in a nasty situation Saturday. I went for a leasurely drive and made a left turn, when a pop happened. It sounded like a steel shaft broke. I had a heck of a time straitening the wheels, but after rolling the steering wheel back and forth a few times, I was able to drive the car home. I'm pretty sure I have a busted rack n pinion. I can't seem to find a complete bushing kit anywhere. I want to replace the ball joints, but WHY do you have to replace the WHOLE freggin arms?
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post #167 of 187 (permalink) Old 07-28-2014, 09:57 AM
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My front end put me in a nasty situation Saturday. I went for a leasurely drive and made a left turn, when a pop happened. It sounded like a steel shaft broke. I had a heck of a time straitening the wheels, but after rolling the steering wheel back and forth a few times, I was able to drive the car home. I'm pretty sure I have a busted rack n pinion. I can't seem to find a complete bushing kit anywhere. I want to replace the ball joints, but WHY do you have to replace the WHOLE freggin arms?
I'm not sure about a bushing kit for the rack and pinion, but as far as the ball joints are concerned, you do NOT have to replace the entire lower control arm - they sell the ball joints separately. In most cases, however, you can buy the whole lower control arm for LESS, or the same, as the ball joint by itself, plus it's easier to replace the whole arm by yourself at home (I've done it before, myself).

Look on rockauto.com; they have all those parts.

Dennis
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post #168 of 187 (permalink) Old 07-28-2014, 01:26 PM
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Yea you can find the ball joints for around $15 each, but you still need to press the old ones out and press the new ones in, PLUS you need to account for this extra time. With new control arms, you just put them back in as quickly as you can pull the old ones out.

You probably can't find complete kits because these are OLD A*@ FREGGIN CARS! They're not exactly big-money makers for the aftermarket parts industry.
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post #169 of 187 (permalink) Old 07-28-2014, 02:13 PM
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There are no bushing kits available for the rack and pinion, and the ones that are in there simply support the actual rack and won't make the steering go from ok to dangerous in a flash like that(and good luck replacing them without special tools that cost more than a brand new rack). This sounds like a Ball joint/tie rod issue.

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post #170 of 187 (permalink) Old 07-28-2014, 06:50 PM
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My front end put me in a nasty situation Saturday. I went for a leasurely drive and made a left turn, when a pop happened. It sounded like a steel shaft broke. I had a heck of a time straitening the wheels, but after rolling the steering wheel back and forth a few times, I was able to drive the car home. I'm pretty sure I have a busted rack n pinion. I can't seem to find a complete bushing kit anywhere. I want to replace the ball joints, but WHY do you have to replace the WHOLE freggin arms?
Put it on stands, take the wheels off, and post pix of WTF.

I can't think of anything breaking that can allow you to drive it after it happens.

Ball joint or tie rod; pop and bad steering Just doesn't go away...

Hopefully, you aren't doing 90mph on the freeway, lol.

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post #171 of 187 (permalink) Old 10-18-2015, 04:10 AM
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I'm curious what may be causing my clunking aswell. Usually when I hear it my car jerks to the left. If I'm on a wide turn on the freeway it will pop and pull my car as stated above. However when I slam on the brakes it will pull my car to the left aswell, what could that be? And for the record I replaced all control arms and bushings, all tie rods, along with stabilizer end links, rotors, brake pads, pretty much everything except the struts themselves. Are sway bars and stabilizer end links the same thing? Anywho, I'm open to any suggestions on what this may be. It feels as if my car is dragging the driver side tire because my cars tire squeal all the time when going in reverse or turning slow. And when it pops the steering wheel changes position. For it to go straight it is at a complete 90 angle to the right then another pop will leave it close to normal but not quite and it will still pull to the right. Any ideas? Please and thank you.
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post #172 of 187 (permalink) Old 10-18-2015, 09:25 AM
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MerkCougar - you have something loose up there.

Did you also do the strut rod to frame bushings? And that popping the wheel to the right or almost straight - that's a tie rod popping. What kind of shape is the rack in? And when's the last alignment on the front of your car?

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post #173 of 187 (permalink) Old 10-18-2015, 02:59 PM
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MerkCougar - you have something loose up there.

Did you also do the strut rod to frame bushings? And that popping the wheel to the right or almost straight - that's a tie rod popping. What kind of shape is the rack in? And when's the last alignment on the front of your car?

RwP
Something loose would make sense because the places I've taken it to and my own personal mechanic said he hasn't found anything wrong. I thought it was the tire rods however those whom checked it said there is no play in the inner or outer tie rods. To my knowledge I have not replaced the struts or strut mounts and in all honesty I have no idea what or where the strut rod to frame bushings are. Sorry to sound dumb I don't know what the rack is either... the last alignment I had was after the replacement of said parts. Should I just take it to my alignment shop and have them tighten everything and re align it?
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post #174 of 187 (permalink) Old 10-18-2015, 07:16 PM
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Yay I had it figured out. I drove and hour and a half to phoenix to a shop I truly trust. They said a bolt on the LCA was loose and they tightened it up for me and then they aligned my wheels and all was well. I haven't drove much but haven't heard any irregular noises and my steering wheel is in the proper position I feel the ride much smoother with no drag on the acceleration like I did before.
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post #175 of 187 (permalink) Old 10-18-2015, 08:51 PM
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Hee! Yah, that'd do it.

The strut rod is the rod from the LCA forwards to the front subframe. The strut rod/subframe bushings are the ones on the rod.

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post #176 of 187 (permalink) Old 10-18-2015, 11:39 PM
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Appreciate the help brotha. I asked him about the strut to frame bushings and he said they looked alright and not to dry rotted however I was under the impression you can't really tell until you take them off and remove the sleeve from them. Would that be correct?
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post #177 of 187 (permalink) Old 10-19-2015, 09:23 AM
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Appreciate the help brotha. I asked him about the strut to frame bushings and he said they looked alright and not to dry rotted however I was under the impression you can't really tell until you take them off and remove the sleeve from them. Would that be correct?
You can usually tell. I just did the SRB's at the control arm. And after 155k in the north they were pretty well trashed. And visually it was obvious. The OEM stuff is better then the best aftermarket stuff. But the factory SRB's that bolt to the arm are pretty much non existent. I went with the blue Moogs since I had both those and the other commonly available black urethane type on hand to compare them too. The Moogs used a thicker sleeve vs the generic Mevotech type and black urethane type material looked to be too soft compared to stock rubber. Plus the Moogs where much closer to the factory bushing shape. My front strut rod to frame bushing seem to be fine. So for the moment I'm going to leave those alone. Other than the lower shock to control arm bolts everything came apart just fine.


A loose bolt will definatatly cause plenty of noise. Something to keep in mind is that a lot of the factory suspension nuts are of the locking type with a nylon insert. And they are not meant to be reused. But of course everyone does. And most of the time things are fine.

But if you hear clunking and reused the old lock nuts it might not be a bad idea to put the car on a lift and recheck the bolt torque. FWIW some of the suspension bolts and nuts are meant to be torqued on a drive on type lift with the weight of the car on them. EG the lower shock bolt. And I believe the lower ball joint.
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post #178 of 187 (permalink) Old 10-20-2015, 06:29 AM
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You can usually tell. I just did the SRB's at the control arm. And after 155k in the north they were pretty well trashed. And visually it was obvious. The OEM stuff is better then the best aftermarket stuff. But the factory SRB's that bolt to the arm are pretty much non existent. I went with the blue Moogs since I had both those and the other commonly available black urethane type on hand to compare them too. The Moogs used a thicker sleeve vs the generic Mevotech type and black urethane type material looked to be too soft compared to stock rubber. Plus the Moogs where much closer to the factory bushing shape. My front strut rod to frame bushing seem to be fine. So for the moment I'm going to leave those alone. Other than the lower shock to control arm bolts everything came apart just fine.


A loose bolt will definatatly cause plenty of noise. Something to keep in mind is that a lot of the factory suspension nuts are of the locking type with a nylon insert. And they are not meant to be reused. But of course everyone does. And most of the time things are fine.

But if you hear clunking and reused the old lock nuts it might not be a bad idea to put the car on a lift and recheck the bolt torque. FWIW some of the suspension bolts and nuts are meant to be torqued on a drive on type lift with the weight of the car on them. EG the lower shock bolt. And I believe the lower ball joint.
Based on my research I saw the common trend of the OEM SBRs being higher quality than any aftermarket products. Upon further reading I saw alot of people saying that moog has been pretty lack luster in recent years anyone have any first hand experience from when moog was better than what is being produced today?

I usually am pretty OCD when it comes to my car needing repairs and what not and when I buy a part I wont buy unless I get new hardware aswell. However it was my assumption that all new parts would come with new hardware for the specific part? Is that not true?
When you say drive on type lift do you mean one that allows the wheels to be flat on the lift while leaving the underside exposed for examination and work? This way the full weight of the car is applied to the suspension?
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post #179 of 187 (permalink) Old 10-20-2015, 11:53 AM
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It's not so much the quality of the oem strut rod bushings but the design itself, which no aftermarket manufacturer has duplicated. The Fords are engineered for a large amount of articulation, being the grade of rubber they use allows it as well, whereas the aftermarket designs all go with simpler puck like designs, and often in a stiffer material. Some seem to have luck flipping the OEM washers on the aftermarket bushings allowing more articulation

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post #180 of 187 (permalink) Old 10-20-2015, 01:49 PM
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Based on my research I saw the common trend of the OEM SBRs being higher quality than any aftermarket products. Upon further reading I saw alot of people saying that moog has been pretty lack luster in recent years anyone have any first hand experience from when moog was better than what is being produced today?

I usually am pretty OCD when it comes to my car needing repairs and what not and when I buy a part I wont buy unless I get new hardware aswell. However it was my assumption that all new parts would come with new hardware for the specific part? Is that not true?
When you say drive on type lift do you mean one that allows the wheels to be flat on the lift while leaving the underside exposed for examination and work? This way the full weight of the car is applied to the suspension?
Yep. That's a drive on. Most alignment shops have them. But the most common lift around here's the twin post. Since I don't have a drive on lift and there's no way your going to fit under the car when it's sitting on all four tires I settled for placing a jack under the Lower Control Arm. Taking the weight off the jack stand and then bouncing it a few times to release any bushing preload. Hopefully it's good enough..
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