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post #1 of 2 (permalink) Old 08-15-2014, 04:53 PM Thread Starter
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Location: Minneapolis, MN
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Suspension Gremlin

Anyone up for a suspension noise mystery?

A month or so ago I replaced my driver's side control arm. The install went well, however a month later I started getting a barely audible popping noise/creaking at street speeds while hitting bumps. I assumed it was related to my control arm install, so I went back through and did a check of everything. Control arm bolts were all torqued to spec, but I gave them a little snug and the noise went away for a few weeks.

The noise came back again, but started getting louder. Creaking and pop-pop-pop when starting, stopping and while driving at lower speeds. I jacked it up and replaced the saddle bushings (had them on hand anyway). The car was whisper quiet for a few days. The noise came back and got louder. Jacked it up again to do a little diagnostic. I removed my sway link and the sound went away... for a few days. I let it go to see how bad/loud it would get to help pinpoint the cause. After a few days the creaking and popping got so loud I thought my car was going to implode. Final test: I jacked up the car and immediately lowered it. Sound went away for a day again.

My question is, what would cause these types of symptoms that would be resolved by unloading the suspension? I gutted my front suspension a year ago, FE5 struts, springs, new mounts and bearings, the whole shebang. I'm not sold on one of those failing just yet. Everything looks good, so I am a bit puzzled by the latest mystery. The only thing I have noticed is that while applying proper torque to my lugs on that wheel, I get a loud squeaking, while torquing, but nothing else. Who knows if it's related.

Ideas, anyone?

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post #2 of 2 (permalink) Old 08-17-2014, 08:49 AM
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Location: Grand Rapids, Michigan
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I had a similar problem a couple months ago. I couldn't pin point the noise either so I did three things.
1. Heavily greased every joint
2. Torqued everything to spec
3. Loctite all bolts
Fixed the noise for me and haven't had a problem since.
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