Low speed "clunk" noise.... - EvolutionM - Mitsubishi Lancer and Lancer Evolution Community



Low speed "clunk" noise....

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Old Feb 3, 2018, 09:39 AM   #1
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Low speed "clunk" noise....

Hey guys, recently our 2012 OS has been making a mild "clunk" sound when going over bumps/speed bumps. Almost like something is loose and going back and fourth while traveling over them. Only in lower speeds too. I went under the car and checked the basics. Everything seems tight, nothing loose, hanging, etc...

The only possibility I could think is something is up with the front axles? Like they may be loose and slipping in and out, or a loose shock, but none of this really came apparent when I was doing some looking...The car just hit 85k so not sure what to really look for unfortunately. It kind of just came up one day and has not gone away since....thoughts?

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Old Feb 6, 2018, 10:47 AM   #2
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Originally Posted by Hamman View Post
Hey guys, recently our 2012 OS has been making a mild "clunk" sound when going over bumps/speed bumps. Almost like something is loose and going back and fourth while traveling over them. Only in lower speeds too. I went under the car and checked the basics. Everything seems tight, nothing loose, hanging, etc...

The only possibility I could think is something is up with the front axles? Like they may be loose and slipping in and out, or a loose shock, but none of this really came apparent when I was doing some looking...The car just hit 85k so not sure what to really look for unfortunately. It kind of just came up one day and has not gone away since....thoughts?

Thanks
I can only provide guesses (which I normally try to avoid).
Given that the noise only comes when you go trough speed bumps, it is a strong indication to me that the front strut assembly could be the culprit. You did not specify whether the sound comes from one side only or both. You might want to use a help, who can assist you in listening to determine this.
For full disclosure I do get noise often in winter time, when going through speed bumps and the source is the accumulated mud/dried dirt/salt crystals/tiny gravel grains (or the combination of those) stuck somewhere up in the front strut assembly and the rubbing of these particles to the moving elements of the suspension creates the noise (my best guess is the surface where the coil spring ends meet the strut (see the attached image). High-pressure wash (as often I can do it in frigid temperatures) eliminates this noise but I would not call it clunking. At one time I only could eliminate the noise by lifting up the car and pressure wash the wheel well with the extended suspension (try not to spray water directly to the exposed shock absorber).
I would think if you cannot "wash your noise away" then you may have a bushing problem somewhere. Try to replicate the noise by going somewhere with bad road surface and test whether small amplitude travel of your front suspension also creates the noise or you need to exceed a certain suspension travel to trigger it.
If I remember well you are doing moderate off-roading, so dirt flying up in your suspension is a strong possibility.
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Old Feb 7, 2018, 12:46 PM   #3
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Thanks AWCAWD, all very helpful information. I need to give the car a wash anyways so I'll give a thorough look at the struts and see if there is any extended movement and or debris. I was thinking about updating the struts soon anyways with new H&R springs as well. I'll be sure to post back any findings.
The noise does seem more prominent on the drivers side but then again hard to exactly pin point it out and the funny thing too is it is not always consistent which also makes me believe it is shock related!

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Old Feb 11, 2018, 07:59 AM   #4
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Some updates. Lifted the car and power washed all the suspension parts and no change. Checked over tie rods, sway bar links, etc.. all good. I had read on the EVO section roughly 1000 replies of this issue. The top of our struts have a bearing/bushing type strut mount assembly that can wear out or simply fail. I watched a video of a guys EVO making the exact same noise. These top strut bearings can be bought for around $50 a side. When we do our lift, I am planning or getting new struts anyways and replacing the bearing section if the assembly does not come with them.
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