Noisy Front end

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Nicky Lada
Posts: 3
Joined: Mon Feb 15, 2010 6:47 pm
Location: Nova Scotia, Canada

Noisy Front end

Postby Nicky Lada » Mon Feb 15, 2010 7:04 pm

2004 has a noticeable bump/click on every slght bump in the road, this only started six months ago.

I changed the inner sway bar bushings which were very worn, and if anything the noise got worse. Any idea what I should try next?

tks.


fleurys
Posts: 287
Joined: Tue May 12, 2009 5:03 am
Location: Ste-Catherine, QC
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Re: Noisy Front end

Postby fleurys » Tue Feb 16, 2010 7:31 am

Nicky Lada wrote:2004 has a noticeable bump/click on every slght bump in the road, this only started six months ago.

I changed the inner sway bar bushings which were very worn, and if anything the noise got worse. Any idea what I should try next?

tks.
Last time it happened to me it was my balljoints. You can detect this prior of changing by jacking the front and feeling for play with a up-to-down movement of the wheel. (when you are on the side of the truck, take one of the wheel in your hand having one hand on the higher protion of the wheel while having the other on the lower), then try moving the wheel like if you wanted to change the camber. If there is play there, then your balljoints are probably due..

now if you change your hands and grab the wheel between the front and the back of the wheel and try to move the wheel from side-to-side like if you wanted to change the toe. If you feel some play now, then 1 or both of your tie-tod end are due.. It can be very subtle ...

If you have a partner, you can ask him to move the steering wheel from let to right while you hold the wheel in your hand. If there is play, you will feel it too.

Hope this helps you a bit.

00pathySE
Posts: 145
Joined: Wed Aug 12, 2009 6:02 pm
Location: Ontario

Postby 00pathySE » Tue Apr 27, 2010 12:03 pm

have you had your front struts replaced before? I would almost gaurantee it has something to do with the strut pads. It's just noisy and isn't hurtng anything. You should get them replaced when you replace you front struts. Let me know if this helps.
I have the same problem with my 2000 pf. I should have replaced them when I replaced my front struts a couple of years ago, but they weren't making any noise yet, so I went the cheap route. Now they are noisy

warriorgirl
Posts: 8
Joined: Wed Aug 11, 2010 9:54 pm

Postby warriorgirl » Wed Aug 11, 2010 10:28 pm

00pathySE wrote:have you had your front struts replaced before? I would almost gaurantee it has something to do with the strut pads. It's just noisy and isn't hurtng anything. You should get them replaced when you replace you front struts. Let me know if this helps.
I have the same problem with my 2000 pf. I should have replaced them when I replaced my front struts a couple of years ago, but they weren't making any noise yet, so I went the cheap route. Now they are noisy
oopathySE what are strut pads? Could you possibly describe the part to me or show me a picture/diagram? I have been hearing noise after a strut & ball joint replacement and someone has mentioned something to me about strut bearings???? I'm just trying to figure out what part is making that noise.

Platinum_Racing
Posts: 9
Joined: Tue Aug 10, 2010 2:58 pm
Location: Rowley, MA

Postby Platinum_Racing » Thu Aug 12, 2010 1:40 pm

The "Strut Pads" hes talking about sounds more like the top hat to me.

The top hat is bolted onto the top of the strut. It serves several purposes. The first is to sandwich the spring onto the strut. The second is to hold the strut to the car, and the third (Which is where the bearings come into play) is they allow the strut to rotate when you steer left or right.

My guess would be tie rod ends. They are inexpensive and very easy to replace. If they break, you will lose steering to the wheel with the broken tie rod and the wheel will go in whatever direction it feels like, usually inwards. If this happens while the vehicle is moving at speed it could cause a major accident.

Some tie rod ends have grease fittings. The ones that do need to be greased often, usually whenever you do an oil change. This is often neglected. The version used on the Pathfinder is a sealed piece, however. Sealed tie rod ends do not require frequent greasing, as they have sealed rubber boots and long lasting grease. If the rubber boot gets torn it will greatly reduce the longevity of the tie rod end, similar to a CV shaft.

warriorgirl
Posts: 8
Joined: Wed Aug 11, 2010 9:54 pm

Postby warriorgirl » Thu Aug 12, 2010 8:15 pm

My husband and I have access to an auto hobby shop, yesterday when we had it up in the lift for a tire rotation we noticed some rather depressing things.
1) The little rubber boots on the NEW barely 2 months old ball joints had some how torn open & there was some grease seepage.

2) The outer edges of the front tires were worn down. Also, the front tires were pointing in towards each other, like the bottoms of the tires were angled in at each other like in a V shape sort of. It was like this on the ground too as we noticed once it was off the lift.

3) When trying to move the tires, the driver side tire had a lot of play up and down and side to side. The passenger side had some play up and down, and a lot of play side to side. (I just replaced the passenger side wheel bearing in March... soooo I don't know)

I am trying everything in an attempt to fix this pop click noise that is going on. Its over bumps, sometimes turns, and even when I just get IN the pathfinder (I'm only 120lbs!) I can hear something making like a pop noise like its shifting bc of the weight. Maybe it is the spring in the strut?

I haven't noticed anything with the tie rod ends. I'm not very familiar with them, I know what they are what they look like etc however I don't know what to look for visually or audibly in a bad one. When I took the truck to a auto shop to get it checked out for this noise the guy said he didn't see anything with the tie rod ends. He said that the ball joints could possibly not be seated right (they weren't torn at the time), after that he said a strut spring might not be placed properly or the strut bearing or top hat was bad. We replaced the top hat on the passenger side, yet thats where I've been told the sound is the worst from. Anybody have any suggestions? I really want to know what the tires would be pointing in towards each other at the bottom like a V! I will post pictures to help!

warriorgirl
Posts: 8
Joined: Wed Aug 11, 2010 9:54 pm

Postby warriorgirl » Thu Aug 12, 2010 9:16 pm

here's the link to the pictures of my pathfinder. I apologize, its night time & I couldnt move the truck as my husband parked behind me.

http://s26.photobucket.com/albums/c111/ ... rXE168kmi/

Platinum_Racing
Posts: 9
Joined: Tue Aug 10, 2010 2:58 pm
Location: Rowley, MA

Postby Platinum_Racing » Fri Aug 13, 2010 5:48 pm

The angle of the tires you describe is known as "Camber". Camber is the angle of the wheels in reference to an imaginary line perpendicular to the ground.

Due to the suspension geometry of the Pathfinder, the camber will change a bit with ride height. That means, with the front wheels off the ground you will have positive camber, with the tops of the tires angled away from the car. With a lot of weight on the front wheels, you will have negative camber, with the tops of the tires angled in towards the car. At normal average ride height the camber should be zero, meaning the tires should be straight up and down. If the tires aren't straight up and down when the car is sitting on the ground on its own weight, then you have an alignment issue. The 1997-1999 didn't have adjustable front camber from the factory, so in order to get a front end alignment you would need to buy a "Camber Correction Kit". These kits includes two new eccentric strut bolts to replace the standard upper strut bolts that hold the strut to the knuckle. These bolts are very cheap, an they allow front end alignments to be more precise, increasing tire longevity, handling, and ride quality. The 2000-2004 may have these bolts installed from the factory, but I'm not sure. The way the bolts work is simple, it looks like a regular bolt only the head of the bolt isn't in the center of the threaded part of the bolt. When you turn this bolt, it changes the angle of the front tires. Alignment shops can use these bolts in conjunction with their laser alignment tools to fine tune your front camber until they get it 100% on the money.

Before you go spending money on an alignment, I would check for any other issues with the front suspension. If you have play in your wheel bearings, tie rods, ball joints, top hat, or strut bearings the alignment will be completely inaccurate and the shop might even refuse to do it. As far as your wheel wobbling issues, check the ball joints for play as well as the wheel bearings. The wheel bearings are usually a common source for play in any vehicle. Also, when looking for the source of the noises you're talking about, don't overlook parts like the sway bars or sway bar links. They can sometimes make more noise than you might think.

I know I've only had my Pathfinder since January, but I have had the front end torn apart to know the things I posted. I've also been working on cars my whole life, and the last time I took a car to a shop for repair was when it was under warranty 5 years ago. I do 100% of my own auto work, and everything I posted I have done on some car or another, some things many, many times over. If I can do it, you can too. The financial benefits of doing your own work can be substantial if you don't mind getting a little dirty. I recommend everyone tries it sometime. Most times when a shop gives you an estimate for $500+ worth of work, it only costs them $50 in parts... Just keep that in mind. (IE Timing Belt, Water Pump, Fuel Pump, Head Gasket, ect...) ;)

warriorgirl
Posts: 8
Joined: Wed Aug 11, 2010 9:54 pm

Postby warriorgirl » Wed Aug 25, 2010 8:14 am

Since an alignment where we live is only $49.95 I decided to go for it and it did fix the pull. They couldn't figure out where the noise was coming from either, the guy said to check all bushings but it sounded like the struts. Which were just replaced. Since then the tires look normal on the ground and there's no pull, however when the truck was on the lift he showed me that my 2 ball joints (replace in June) were shot already and that my passenger CV boot had a tear (which I knew was only a matter of time since it was so old). I'm getting frustrated trying to figure out what this clicking noise is. I don't want to sell it but I can't keep driving a vehicle making noises like this and no one knows whats wrong.

nheric
Posts: 18
Joined: Thu Jun 17, 2010 5:42 pm

Postby nheric » Fri Nov 26, 2010 6:19 am

did you ever find the issue? have a clunk myself, although not as easily heard as it sounds like yours is. I would start with what you know is bad, that half shaft and ball joints.


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