Strange Sounds and vibrations

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Post by driveit on Tue Feb 25, 2014 3:21 pm

On the road I live on there is a steep hill that goes back up just as steep on the other side as soon as you hit the bottom of it. When I hit the bottom if I am going more than 35 or so I hear a thud and it feels like something hits my feet from underneath the car. It seems like the only thing there that it could be would be the exhaust. It isn't loose, but does drag in that spot if I go too fast. I am looking for shorty headers in an attempt to correct this.

Any ideas? Anyone running shorties on their car? Got pics?
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Post by dynchel on Tue Feb 25, 2014 7:14 pm

Make sure the control arm bolts are tight, look at the condition of the bushings, check every thing you had apart to do the springs, look at the body bushings, & the transmission mount. These would be where I would start.
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Post by driveit on Tue Feb 25, 2014 8:40 pm

Thanks.
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Post by ant7377 on Tue Feb 25, 2014 10:44 pm

Sway bar end links,make sure they are tight while the car has its weight on it.
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Post by driveit on Wed Feb 26, 2014 1:28 am

Ill try to check it in the morning before I head out.
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Post by Tom77 on Wed Feb 26, 2014 8:30 am

dynchel wrote:Make sure the control arm bolts are tight, look at the condition of the bushings, check every thing you had apart to do the springs, look at the body bushings, & the transmission mount.  These would be where I would  start.

Have shortys on mine. No pics though sorry. Only issue since I put them on is one of the bolts by the starter sucks to tighten. I agree its probably the trans mount. Down the hill you would not be under power at the bottom you are probably on the gas if the noise comes during acceleration I wouls look there first.
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Post by driveit on Wed Feb 26, 2014 11:58 am

The sound occurs when I hit the bottom of the hill even before throttle is applied. Also it seems to be either under my feet or in front of them, but it is hard to tell. I was running late this morning so I didn't get to check it.
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Post by Wallyuph on Wed Feb 26, 2014 12:20 pm

You may have worn ball joints
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Post by driveit on Wed Feb 26, 2014 12:48 pm

I bought new ones, but the old ones were tight. My uncle said they looked good, so we did not replace them. I don't know what to look for. I don't have a press.
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Post by driveit on Wed Feb 26, 2014 5:00 pm

Crawled under my car on my lunch and found that the bushing where the centerlink bolts up on the drivers side is squashed almost completely out. It almost looks like there is a gap in it as well. Could this cause the thump I am hearing?
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Post by dynchel on Wed Feb 26, 2014 5:06 pm

At the pitmen arm? That probably won't make noise.
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Post by chevellelaguna on Wed Feb 26, 2014 5:32 pm

You're going to have to jack the car up, check for play in the balljoint and play in the outer and inner tie rod ends. With the car jacked under the crossmember wheels off the ground put a long prybar under the front wheel...lift up and down, should be no slop, then grip the wheel at 9 and 3 o'clock and wiggle back and forth, that'll show wear in the tie rods idler arm, pitman arm and centerlink, you'll have to diagnose those ALL seperately. Without checking the suspension entirely....you won't know for sure....it could be anything!! Check these things then let us know.
A loose exhaust might be it too(as you mentioned) they can move almost an inch back and forth under extreme twist etc.
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Post by switchbiker on Wed Feb 26, 2014 5:37 pm

driveit wrote:Crawled under my car on my lunch and found that the bushing where the centerlink bolts up on the drivers side is squashed almost completely out.  It almost looks like there is a gap in it as well.  Could this cause the thump I am hearing?
That isn't a bushing, thats a rubber dust boot.
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Post by driveit on Wed Feb 26, 2014 6:48 pm

"That isn't a bushing, thats a rubber dust boot." That is what I though, but wasn't sure.

"You're going to have to jack the car up, check for play in the balljoint and play in the outer and inner tie rod ends. With the car jacked under the crossmember wheels off the ground put a long prybar under the front wheel...lift up and down, should be no slop, then grip the wheel at 9 and 3 o'clock and wiggle back and forth, that'll show wear in the tie rods idler arm, pitman arm and centerlink, you'll have to diagnose those ALL seperately. Without checking the suspension entirely....you won't know for sure....it could be anything!! Check these things then let us know.
A loose exhaust might be it too(as you mentioned) they can move almost an inch back and forth under extreme twist etc."

I will check all of this this weekend weather permitting, but all of those parts are new except the control arms bushings and ball joints. Wish one of you were close to give me a hand in person. Thanks for all of the tips.
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Post by driveit on Wed Mar 05, 2014 3:46 pm

I jacked up both sides of the front of my car on Saturday before the snow hit and checked things out. Didn't find anything out of the ordinary. Everything seemed nice and tight. I didn't jack it up under the control arm though. Someone said I should do that. I need some more sun so I can spend a little more time on this thing.
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Post by Wallyuph on Wed Mar 05, 2014 4:11 pm

Jack goes under frame or cross member not control arms so wheel is hanging on its own then put a big pry bar under tire and see it the ball joints move.
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Post by driveit on Wed Mar 05, 2014 6:05 pm

IC. So I did good. I just need a prybar.
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Post by thatfnthing on Wed Mar 05, 2014 6:21 pm

At the very least you can put one hand on the top of the tire and the other on the bottom, and alternately push/pull to see if you can make the wheel "wiggle" in/out. If it moves, one or both ball joints are bad.
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Post by driveit on Wed Mar 05, 2014 6:58 pm

I pushed in on the top of the tire inward toward the engine and it did give a bit. I almost thought that the lug nuts were loose, but after a checking the other side I just assumed that there was a little play in it by default. After that l think last post, maybe I need to get those ball joints put in.
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Post by chevellelaguna on Wed Mar 05, 2014 9:38 pm

The looseness you feel without the pry bar is play in the bearing ( which by the sounds of things is an acceptable amount) need a pry bar under the wheel it can be a pipe, a 2x4, anything rigid. Slip it under the wheel lift up and down, look at the balljoints separately, even put your other hand on the boot, that's where it'll be loose. (If it's the ball joints)
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Post by bigredlaguna on Thu Mar 06, 2014 1:28 am

I would suspect A-arm bushings. My Laguna would make a noise when going through dips, driveways, and such similar to what your original post stated. Especially if I crab through the dip or driveway so the suspension so the wheels are forced into extreme camber or rapid movement through most of its range of motion.

You might hear a ball joint, but the A-arm bushings are right next to the frame, and more likely to transmit a sound or vibration to the floorboard.

Good luck!
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Post by driveit on Thu Mar 06, 2014 12:16 pm

I have also noticed quite a bit of play in the steering wheel when driving straight you can move it about an inch before it actually turns. I drove it today and it did the same thing. It seemed like the sound came from farther back this time. I even wondered if it was the driveshaft, since I do have a bad vibration at about 55. I need a pro to come and drive my car and tell me whats wrong with it. Any takers?
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Post by driveit on Tue Mar 11, 2014 3:10 pm

I checked everything under the car. There is the slightest bit of play in the wheels. We tightened the wheel bearing nut about 1/16th or an inch and it removed the play in the wheels, but I could not put the pin back through the nut. I don't think this would fix the play in the steering anyway. As far as the sound I have been hearing I couldn't find anything wrong everything seemed nice and tight. I want to jack up on the cross member to see if is loose or if the trans mount is broken or something.

I do have 3 turns lock to lock on the steering and the wheel is tight. I still have about an inch or so of play in the steering wheel when driving. I am going to try to take some pics and vid of everything tonight.

Any more tips?
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Post by dynchel on Tue Mar 11, 2014 7:39 pm

You don't jack the cross member, you try to lift the trans off of it. They are easy to miss since a totally failed mount can look fine just sitting there.
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Post by chevellelaguna on Tue Mar 11, 2014 7:41 pm

If you are having that much play in the steering wheel ... And the suspension is rebuilt and tight, like you checked then, it really sounds like your steering box is worn out. Shouldn't be able to turn the wheel and not get an immediate response at the wheels.
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