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Old 28th April 2010, 10:31   #1 (permalink)
 
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Knocking clunking noise from front end at low speed

Hi,

I have noticed over the last couple of weeks a knocking noise has developed from the front end of my Civic when travelling over uneven road surface at low speed 10mph-30mph.

I have previously had both front suspension struts, bump stops and front sub-frame replaced under warranty a couple of years ago, but my Civic is now almost 3.5 years old.

The noise seems to mainly come from the passenger side although can be triggered when any wheel goes over a small bump, front or rear! I’m starting to think it could be something loose in the engine bay or maybe a link between the suspension. The bumps stops are still firmly in place.

It seems to happen when the body of the car shifts rather than when a sudden shock is received, since it does not make the noise at higher speeds. When going over a larger pot hole or grid for example the suspension seems to make the normal ‘thud’ noise.

I have considered taking out an extended warranty from my dealer, but am not sure if it would cover these kinds or repairs/works. I’m going to read the fine print on that one.

Would anyone have any ideas of anything I can check/inspect on the car? I want to avoid running up a bill for fault-finding work by a garage if possible.

Any help/tips on this much appreciated, thanks,


Allan
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Old 28th April 2010, 11:34   #2 (permalink)
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hi i had similar problem thought it was the bump stop but garage insisted it was top strut mount so could be in your case ,good luck
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Old 30th April 2010, 19:40   #3 (permalink)
 
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found something interesting on the web. maybe is the same foult on civics. someone experienced should take a look at this.


copy/paste;

The poping and clicking sounds you all hear are related to the upper strut bearings (right hand side - RHS). That and the bearing and strut mounts need replacing often on our cars. I suspect that when our cars were first designed that the engineers did not take into account the camber/toe-in issues that would eventually develop with their front suspension geometry. Interestingly enough some of us here have had to replace these every spring after lowering the car! I purchased my front kit and plan to do it in the spring after the pot holes are fixed because you have to have an alignment done after the top plates are replaced. Part of the problem is that the struts are loose at the top because the whole assemble gets loose over time. My personal belief is that that it's because the engine in the Maxima is not centered in the engine bay and is closer to the RHS (passenger side) of the car. My next car will be a perfectly balanced car...front & back/side to side. What you guys are hearing is the strut (shock absorber) rod/mount banging from side to side because all the nuts and bolts holding it in to place are a tiny bit loose from being worn out...and the clicking noise is the worn out top plate bearing that alows the spring and strut to turn at the same time.
Click the image to open in full size.
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Old 30th April 2010, 20:49   #4 (permalink)
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Or this could be the fix... I'm tempted to try is myself, but would rather have it done by the blessing of Honda.
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Old 10th May 2010, 13:17   #5 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bluefish1 View Post
Hi,

I have noticed over the last couple of weeks a knocking noise has developed from the front end of my Civic when travelling over uneven road surface at low speed 10mph-30mph.

I have previously had both front suspension struts, bump stops and front sub-frame replaced under warranty a couple of years ago, but my Civic is now almost 3.5 years old.

The noise seems to mainly come from the passenger side although can be triggered when any wheel goes over a small bump, front or rear! I’m starting to think it could be something loose in the engine bay or maybe a link between the suspension. The bumps stops are still firmly in place.

It seems to happen when the body of the car shifts rather than when a sudden shock is received, since it does not make the noise at higher speeds. When going over a larger pot hole or grid for example the suspension seems to make the normal ‘thud’ noise.

Any help/tips on this much appreciated, thanks,


Allan

OR... as I have just had this very problem...passenger side and all.

I was told that the antirollbar links needed replaced (hope I used the correct wording)
They were replaced, low speed noises solved!
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Old 20th May 2010, 20:44   #6 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dunnichen View Post
OR... as I have just had this very problem...passenger side and all.

I was told that the antirollbar links needed replaced (hope I used the correct wording)
They were replaced, low speed noises solved!
Woah!

My car was just MOT'd and there was an advisory that the antiroll bar ball joints and linkage was worn. I have now also developed a really annoying metallic twang/clunk on our wonderfully rutted roads up here.

Phoned my Dealer straight away (as I had it MOT'd locally) and he said it was just wear and tear and would not be covered by warranty, even though I protested that the car was only three years old (it has done 66k miles though) and it seemed strange for this part of the suspension to be failing.

If that is the cause of the clunks then I'm gonna have serious words with them next time it goes in for a service.
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Old 20th May 2010, 21:09   #7 (permalink)
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dude I cant comment...I thought they would service warranties up to 60k after that youre on your own and its major compnonents only covered by warranty - someone here will know more details than I do -
But with 60k Im not suprised theyve got a warning...mine had done 29000 and they needed replaced.
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Old 25th June 2010, 18:33   #8 (permalink)
 
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Long time lurker fist time poster....
I had same issue with my O7 plate 2.2 Diesel with 40K on the clock.
Got pads and disks replaced 2 mths (or 2k miles) ago then this clunking developed on the front passenger side. Sounded like the space saver wheel was loose in the boot (which it isn't).
Local Honda Dealership - Front Roll Bar Linkage £112.
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Old 25th June 2010, 21:19   #9 (permalink)
 
 
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Hi Alan,

I have done a few of these now and everytime it has been something different.
If your around my area call in and I will pop it on my ramp and see if I can shed any light on it for you I won't charge you to look at it.

Stevie


www.grinspeed.co.uk
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Old 1st July 2010, 21:15   #10 (permalink)
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Replacement linkage £112!!!!!

I've never had to replace a component like this on any other car and they were all high mileage beasts as well. Hell my '78 Roadster has done 80k and it's still on it's original set up.

Guess Honda just don't make them like they used to. Damn Shame.

Looks like I'll be trading her in for a Citroen DS3 sooner than I thought.
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Old 21st January 2011, 19:43   #11 (permalink)
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Simon_SLO View Post
found something interesting on the web. maybe is the same foult on civics. someone experienced should take a look at this.


copy/paste;

The poping and clicking sounds you all hear are related to the upper strut bearings (right hand side - RHS). That and the bearing and strut mounts need replacing often on our cars. I suspect that when our cars were first designed that the engineers did not take into account the camber/toe-in issues that would eventually develop with their front suspension geometry. Interestingly enough some of us here have had to replace these every spring after lowering the car! I purchased my front kit and plan to do it in the spring after the pot holes are fixed because you have to have an alignment done after the top plates are replaced. Part of the problem is that the struts are loose at the top because the whole assemble gets loose over time. My personal belief is that that it's because the engine in the Maxima is not centered in the engine bay and is closer to the RHS (passenger side) of the car. My next car will be a perfectly balanced car...front & back/side to side. What you guys are hearing is the strut (shock absorber) rod/mount banging from side to side because all the nuts and bolts holding it in to place are a tiny bit loose from being worn out...and the clicking noise is the worn out top plate bearing that alows the spring and strut to turn at the same time.
Click the image to open in full size.
It might be the same problem that I came across. Once I complained about that clunk noise (always only left side) to the dealer and these upper strut bearings were replaced under warranty. But it came back again. When I had my springs replaced fro Eibach Pro Kit that noise was gone again for quite a long time. Perhaps blts and nuts were tightened properly when during that operation. But it is back again. I will soon have my brake pads replaced and I will ask the technician to dismount front left suspension and have a look.

Last edited by 4gotten; 22nd January 2011 at 15:05.
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Old 21st January 2011, 22:51   #12 (permalink)
 
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I have the same problem ...

I'm going tomorrow with the car to a friend who works at Honda to see if he can find out where the noise comes from.

In my old Civic (EK3) had the same problem and it was the anti-roll bar (end-links) that were loose.

Tomorrow I give news.
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Old 7th September 2011, 16:40   #13 (permalink)
 
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Exclamation wishbone bush

I have had the same low speed knocking at about 30000miles coming from the front n/s. Took it into a honda dealer who diagnosed it as the fns anti-roll bar broken causing the noise.

Got it fixed for a extortionate £200 only the find the knocking reoccuring 20000miles later!

After first/second/third opinions all contradicting each other I finally was motivated to look myself (with the help of a v knowledgable mate!). We concluded that the knocking this time was coming from the bush where the wishbone joins the chassis which had disintergrated, and was in especially bad condition compared to the fos bush, maybe due to the extra pressure placed on it from when the roll bar was broken and carried on driving it (that'll learn me)

It would appear that there is a weakness in the anti roll bar for it break with only 30000miles and from reading the posts above for some reason seems to be more common on the n/s?

Hope this helps someone!
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Old 10th September 2011, 17:06   #14 (permalink)
 
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Hi All,

My first post so hope I can provide a solution for this problem. My girlfriends car had this problem on both sides within a couple of months of each other. Her mechanic uncle managed to diagnose this soley based on my description of the noise (A knocking noise only noticeable at low speeds). He replaced the Anti roll bar drop link and this solved the problem. The great thing is they are very cheap.

Link to part on Lancaster Honda (Cox Motor Parts) site: Genuine Honda Civic Front Anti Roll Bar Drop Link [51320SMGE01] - £35.39 : Cox Motor Parts Direct - Genuine Honda Brakes Clutches & Accessories

Currently £42 each.

Hope this helps someone.

Edit: Just came accross this guide in the how to section How to: Change drop links the easy way

Richard

Last edited by weigy104; 10th September 2011 at 17:13.
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Old 27th October 2012, 15:02   #15 (permalink)
 
 
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Hi All,

Thought I'd drop a quick line here for those that have had or currently have a knocking noise coming from the front end, upper shock area. After almost tearing the car apart, going through the wheel well, from under the car & removing the battery/air cleaner I finally discovered the source. Each of the strut assys have the upper rubber mount with the three mounting bolts. Part of this assy is a large cupped washer that seats in the rubber mount and is held by a self locking nut to the top of the strut. Once I have actual pictures I'll post but the cupped portion broke leaving a flat washed under the nut thereby allowing the strut to knock against the frame. Unfortunately, the entire rubber mount has to be replaced which entails removing the strut/spring assy. Total cost is approximately €60 parts (I'm changing the bump stop as well) & I'll need a spring compressor. (See items 10 & 13 but cupped washer not visible as it's two parts pressed together) I have pics when I changed mine & if you go to my profile & look in the albums you'll see the pictures of the upper shock mount & what broke. I changed the bump stop & altogether cost me €60 & 2 hrs of my time.
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Last edited by speed59; 27th October 2012 at 15:17.
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Old 27th October 2012, 15:12   #16 (permalink)
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Any Civic that is 4 \ 5 years old, probably needs the " drop links" replaced

In addition, fit Eibach springs, which come with improved 'bump stops'
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Old 9th November 2012, 07:17   #17 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by J. Derek Riddell View Post
Any Civic that is 4 \ 5 years old, probably needs the " drop links" replaced

In addition, fit Eibach springs, which come with improved 'bump stops'
Have the exact same problem, and my CTR is 5 years old. Will order new drop links and have them replaced on both sides of the car. Also have already installed Eibach springs and bump stop.
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Old 9th November 2012, 14:11   #18 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stevo M81 View Post

Have the exact same problem, and my CTR is 5 years old. Will order new drop links and have them replaced on both sides of the car. Also have already installed Eibach springs and bump stop.
While you are at it, replace the rubber suspension bushes as well - good preventive maintenance, if nothing else
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Old 9th November 2012, 15:21   #19 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Simon_SLO View Post
found something interesting on the web. maybe is the same foult on civics. someone experienced should take a look at this.


copy/paste;

The poping and clicking sounds you all hear are related to the upper strut bearings (right hand side - RHS). That and the bearing and strut mounts need replacing often on our cars. I suspect that when our cars were first designed that the engineers did not take into account the camber/toe-in issues that would eventually develop with their front suspension geometry. Interestingly enough some of us here have had to replace these every spring after lowering the car! I purchased my front kit and plan to do it in the spring after the pot holes are fixed because you have to have an alignment done after the top plates are replaced. Part of the problem is that the struts are loose at the top because the whole assemble gets loose over time. My personal belief is that that it's because the engine in the Maxima is not centered in the engine bay and is closer to the RHS (passenger side) of the car. My next car will be a perfectly balanced car...front & back/side to side. What you guys are hearing is the strut (shock absorber) rod/mount banging from side to side because all the nuts and bolts holding it in to place are a tiny bit loose from being worn out...and the clicking noise is the worn out top plate bearing that alows the spring and strut to turn at the same time.
Click the image to open in full size.
Thanks for this post.

I've been trying to find the right word for this sound which is intermittent (it needs to be the right type of bump and the right speed) and mine does have a "popping" sound rather than a "knocking" sound.

Annoying. For year after year I had no suspension problems with a wide range of previous cars but my Golf got through two road springs and the Civic looks as if it might need some attention.

Poor roads or a design fault?
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Old 9th November 2012, 15:28   #20 (permalink)
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One more question.

How dangerous is this?

Would it normally get picked up at service and/or MOT?

Sorry, that's two!
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