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Clicking noise from front suspension


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I have a 2001 C2 Coupe, six speed with 70k miles. I get a loud "clicking" or "pinging" sound from the front left suspension when I turn to the left at low speed (eg pulling out of a driveway etc). The noise occurs whether the car is cold or warmed up (eg after 20 miles). Cold weather is not a factor as I live in Southern California.

I would appreciate any advice as to what to check first (could it be bushings, which I believe are original?) and if this is a common issue with vehicles of this age.

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I have a 2001 C2 Coupe, six speed with 70k miles. I get a loud "clicking" or "pinging" sound from the front left suspension when I turn to the left at low speed (eg pulling out of a driveway etc). The noise occurs whether the car is cold or warmed up (eg after 20 miles). Cold weather is not a factor as I live in Southern California.

I would appreciate any advice as to what to check first (could it be bushings, which I believe are original?) and if this is a common issue with vehicles of this age.

Could be any number of things.

I think I would lift the left front off the ground, remove the wheel - and I would probably take the caliper and rotor off too to get a real good look at everything.

Check:

* the strut mount at the top of the strut as it mounts to the wheel well - is the rubber bushing in it still solid - all still connected (you will also want to look down at the strut mount by removing the black rubber cover on top of hte wheel well and shing a flashlight down in it)

* try to move things - - the wheel carrier should rotate if you have the power on - maybe you can replicate the noise

* the drop links - are they tight and still connected at the sway bar and as they pass through the strut

* bushings and bearings on all the control arms

* all the ball joints and other connections on the arms still tight - where they connect to the suspension frame and to the wheel carrier

* does the hub wiggle if you grab it at 3 and 9 o'clock and try to rock it - does it make a roaring sound when you rotate it

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I have a 2001 C2 Coupe, six speed with 70k miles. I get a loud "clicking" or "pinging" sound from the front left suspension when I turn to the left at low speed (eg pulling out of a driveway etc). The noise occurs whether the car is cold or warmed up (eg after 20 miles). Cold weather is not a factor as I live in Southern California.

I would appreciate any advice as to what to check first (could it be bushings, which I believe are original?) and if this is a common issue with vehicles of this age.

Could be any number of things.

I think I would lift the left front off the ground, remove the wheel - and I would probably take the caliper and rotor off too to get a real good look at everything.

Check:

* the strut mount at the top of the strut as it mounts to the wheel well - is the rubber bushing in it still solid - all still connected (you will also want to look down at the strut mount by removing the black rubber cover on top of hte wheel well and shing a flashlight down in it)

* try to move things - - the wheel carrier should rotate if you have the power on - maybe you can replicate the noise

* the drop links - are they tight and still connected at the sway bar and as they pass through the strut

* bushings and bearings on all the control arms

* all the ball joints and other connections on the arms still tight - where they connect to the suspension frame and to the wheel carrier

* does the hub wiggle if you grab it at 3 and 9 o'clock and try to rock it - does it make a roaring sound when you rotate it

Thanks for the advice, I will look at the strut mount first as is seems easiest. Is it an easy job to replace the strut bushings?

On your last point, what would the roaring sound indicate?

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I have a 2001 C2 Coupe, six speed with 70k miles. I get a loud "clicking" or "pinging" sound from the front left suspension when I turn to the left at low speed (eg pulling out of a driveway etc). The noise occurs whether the car is cold or warmed up (eg after 20 miles). Cold weather is not a factor as I live in Southern California.

I would appreciate any advice as to what to check first (could it be bushings, which I believe are original?) and if this is a common issue with vehicles of this age.

Could be any number of things.

I think I would lift the left front off the ground, remove the wheel - and I would probably take the caliper and rotor off too to get a real good look at everything.

Check:

* the strut mount at the top of the strut as it mounts to the wheel well - is the rubber bushing in it still solid - all still connected (you will also want to look down at the strut mount by removing the black rubber cover on top of hte wheel well and shing a flashlight down in it)

* try to move things - - the wheel carrier should rotate if you have the power on - maybe you can replicate the noise

* the drop links - are they tight and still connected at the sway bar and as they pass through the strut

* bushings and bearings on all the control arms

* all the ball joints and other connections on the arms still tight - where they connect to the suspension frame and to the wheel carrier

* does the hub wiggle if you grab it at 3 and 9 o'clock and try to rock it - does it make a roaring sound when you rotate it

Thanks for the advice, I will look at the strut mount first as is seems easiest. Is it an easy job to replace the strut bushings?

On your last point, what would the roaring sound indicate?

I don't personally think replacing the bushings is all that difficult - involved and requiring the right tools, but not hard. I replaced all the rubber bushings in my track car with solid bushings - not somehting you want to do with a street car! - but I simply disassembled everything, took all the arms that had rubber bushings to a buddy that has a 20-ton shop press, and we made quick work of it. Hard part was ball joint separation to remove all the arms, and the most time consuming part was getting a new alignment. (BTW, if you find you have a bad strut mount, I would just replace the whole mount, not try to replace the bushing.)

Roaring when you spin the wheel hub or wiggle in the wheel hub is a good sign that you have a bad front wheel bearing. Bad wheel bearings can be hard to diagnose sometimes because they can make all sorts of different noises. I don't think this is your issue, but while you are in there, you should check just in case.

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  • 2 months later...

OK so I finally got this issue resolved by Black Forest here in San Diego; They checked the drop links (no), bushings (no), strut mounts (no), ball joint (no), steering rack (no). Eventually we got the hub carrier which has an internal flange which had somehow become damaged, I have no idea how, but it was the cause of the popping noise. When the wheel turned with the weight of the vehicle on it, the flange would grind against an internal surface somehow.

Thanks to everyone who provided helpful suggestions, I hope this diagnosis helps if someone else suffers from the same problem as me.

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