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Help....Opinions Needed About Front End Noise


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My '08 has had what has been described as impact noise since new. This noise is very noticable at low speeds, under 40mph. As the front end loads and unloads quickly, like over breaks in pavement, I hear what sounds like a rubber malet hitting the upper strut towers. It happens when the suspension moves upward and also downward. It is most noticeable over tar lines and bumps in the roads. Sewer covers make it happen, too. It does not sound metalic, but much more like a "thunk". To me, it sounds like something is pretty loose in the front end, more than any car I have ever owned.

 

Both sides seem to make the same noise at vert similar levels. When I take it over speed bumps with one tire hitting the bump and one missing it, it clearly comes from the tower on the side of the bump. When I go back and forth from side to side, the sound moves to the side that hits the speed bump.

 

The dealers first attempt was to replace the strut mounts and both struts. This seemed to reduce the noise a bit, but certainly didn't eliminate it.

 

What I need are ideas and your opinions on if your front ends make what I call a fair amount of noise on impact? The dealer still wants to work with finding a solution, but I keep getting suggestion from some parties involved, that it might be "normal". That "they all do it". Also it has been suggested that the coupes are more solid and may not do it, but the convertibles do. So I need opinions from convertible owners.

 

I know this is subjective, but I find it super hard to believe that with all the GT500 owners out there would have a noisy front end and not complain. I think I have something unique going on, and I want to get it figured out, because it is driving me absolutely nuts.

 

In the middle of last year Ford released a TSB for a redesign of the strut mounts for the GT's and 6's, but not the GT500's. I have read forums that say this redesigned part is significatly more robust than what is in the GT500. I requested this part be put in my car, but Ford has denied it.

 

The dealer is being really cool about this, but they can't figure out what is going on either???

 

Any ideas are certainly appreciated!

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Boy, I can't think of anything - or too many things, I'm not sure which. I'd have to hear the noise, but apparently your mechanic has heard the noise if they've replaced the struts.

 

It doesn't sound like it's normal, but it might depend on how hard you hit speed bumps.

 

Since it's both sides:

 

It could be something in the sway bar, which is one component that is common to both sides. Likewise, if the tower brace was loose (unlikely), movement of the towers could cause that to clunk.

 

Engine mount, but you would hear that under other circumstances. Something in the steering?

 

After replacing all of that, you'll probably find a rubber ball rolling around in your vent or something.

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Boy, I can't think of anything - or too many things, I'm not sure which. I'd have to hear the noise, but apparently your mechanic has heard the noise if they've replaced the struts.

 

It doesn't sound like it's normal, but it might depend on how hard you hit speed bumps.

 

Since it's both sides:

 

It could be something in the sway bar, which is one component that is common to both sides. Likewise, if the tower brace was loose (unlikely), movement of the towers could cause that to clunk.

 

Engine mount, but you would hear that under other circumstances. Something in the steering?

 

After replacing all of that, you'll probably find a rubber ball rolling around in your vent or something.

 

The dealer certainly agrees that they can hear it. They just can't seem to get rid of it, and then the "it might be normal" line of thought creeps in. Or that "they all do it, and maybe someday Ford will fix it with a TSB, etc..."

 

It takes almost nothing to induce the sound. As I drive thru most parking lots, I hear it multiple times as the tires hit the breaks in the pavement. It is not just tire noise, because it does it as the suspension unloads, too. I can't make it happen by pushing up / down on the front end. The suspension just travels up and down nice and quiet. Just the quick direction changes induced by pavement breaks, speed bumps, etc...

 

To me, it really sounds like a loose shock / strut mount, etc... I find it really hard to believe that I have two replacements and that both do it also. That is the part that I can't figure out. The most obvious parts have been changed, and it did reduce the sound somewhat, but still not close to what I would describe as acceptable.

 

The strut brace has been checked and it is tight.

 

It sounds real high, but that may be the sound traveling up thru the strut tower tops. It still could be steering or even sway bar, as you suggest. Or, somehow, still bad strut mounts.

 

I just have to stick with it and hope that Ford / Dealer sticks with it until they figure it out...

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The other owner who got his before mine called me 2 weeks ago to meet him at the dealership that sold us the cars because they have had his up on the hoist 2x's looking for the very samething, a clunking sound when it hits a small crack or bump in the road (he has 1,000 miles on his), we test drove his & then mine (with 4,900+ miles) & his is way worse then mine is. I agree it's in the front strut area & sounds like metal to metal hitting the shock tower.

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The other owner who got his before mine called me 2 weeks ago to meet him at the dealership that sold us the cars because they have had his up on the hoist 2x's looking for the very samething, a clunking sound when it hits a small crack or bump in the road (he has 1,000 miles on his), we test drove his & then mine (with 4,900+ miles) & his is way worse then mine is. I agree it's in the front strut area & sounds like metal to metal hitting the shock tower.

 

Do you know if they were able to solve the problem with the other car? Or what dealership and who the contact may be? I need whatever info I can get. I think we are going down the same path of comparing cars, etc... and I just want to get it resolved. If I can find some dealership that has solved this, I can get the info to mine and hopefully get this resolved....

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NO, they have not solved the mystery

 

Is the "noisy" car a coupe or convertible? And then is yours a coupe or convertible. It has been suggested that mine is noisy because it is a convertible.

 

If you hear that they figure it out, please let me know. I am starting to wonder if they will ever solve it. Mine already had all the parts replaced that I think would be the probable cause of it, and it still does it. It did seem to make it happen less, but still bad enough that I can't imagine it is "normal".

 

Maybe it is variance in the strut mounts or quality control...I don't know....

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Mine does the same thing and I notice it like you said when moving under 40. My road is the worst, on the highway you can hit bumps and no noise. to me it sounds like the tire hitting the wheel well. I know it isnt but that is what it sounds like. the car feels tight, no shimmy, no pulling, responds great. I have been waitnig to see if it gets worse because I really hate bringing to dealer if it isnt a real problem. Only noise, no other symptoms. Also no big impact vibration thru steering wheel when I hear it. Keith

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I have the same problem with mine...Dealership says it is normal. I say they are full of crap. I had the exact same noise problem with my 06 GT. After I replaced the springs and shocks/struts the noise was gone. I will be doing the same to my GT500 soon. Hopefully it fixes it.

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I have the same problem with mine...Dealership says it is normal. I say they are full of crap. I had the exact same noise problem with my 06 GT. After I replaced the springs and shocks/struts the noise was gone. I will be doing the same to my GT500 soon. Hopefully it fixes it.

 

Everybody who has this noise needs to make a complaint to the dealerships. I am 80% certain it is the upper strut mounts and so far they seem to have no fix. I don't think that they will come up with a fix, if we don't get enough people taking them in, because as of now, the dealer says that they have no other complaints in the "Ford System".

 

Ford completely redesigned the mounts for the '05-'07's (non GT500's and Verts) and even issued a TSB, for these exact symptoms. They WILL NOT however try these mounts on my car, since they haven't been tested on a GT500, so we get the old design. Plus I am sure the rubber part is softer than it should be for a GT500 in the redesigned part.

 

I fell like I am headed for them finding another that is noisy and then using that to justify to me that it is "normal". If this is "normal", then I won't buy another Ford, period. I am pretty simple about these things, and I wouldn't accept this noise in a $20K car. This is simply poor design if it is "normal".

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I haven't heard the sound in mine, but from what you guys say, it isn't normal. I've been driving old cars for my whole life, and instead of gauges and lights, they make noise. I'm pretty tuned in to funny sounds.

 

If it's a metallic sound like a click at low speeds, it's probably a tie rod end or bushing. At speed they load up and don't make noise. But you guys seem to be describing a thump from both sides. BTW, pushing and pulling on the suspension by hand is not an indicator - you don't weigh 4,000 pounds. It may take more than you got in order to make the noise.

 

The tower brace could very well be transmitting noise from one side to both sides. It might even change the sound, so it's lower pitched. I'm almost beginning to think there may be a missing or broken spot weld in one tower that's just letting two plates bump one another or something, or some misaligned bolt hole or reinforcing plate.

 

I have also seen where there is a bad part (say, a strut), and they replace it with another bad part, because it's a manufacturing problem with the part, not the car. Let's say 5% of the struts thump, then 10% of the cars have a thump. When they replace the struts, you still have a 10% chance of getting the thump back. The assumption is that it's not the strut because it didn't fix the problem, when in fact it IS the problem.

 

I'm wondering if anybody with the sound has ever done a suspension upgrade, and if that cured the problem.

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I haven't heard the sound in mine, but from what you guys say, it isn't normal. I've been driving old cars for my whole life, and instead of gauges and lights, they make noise. I'm pretty tuned in to funny sounds.

 

If it's a metallic sound like a click at low speeds, it's probably a tie rod end or bushing. At speed they load up and don't make noise. But you guys seem to be describing a thump from both sides. BTW, pushing and pulling on the suspension by hand is not an indicator - you don't weigh 4,000 pounds. It may take more than you got in order to make the noise.

 

The tower brace could very well be transmitting noise from one side to both sides. It might even change the sound, so it's lower pitched. I'm almost beginning to think there may be a missing or broken spot weld in one tower that's just letting two plates bump one another or something, or some misaligned bolt hole or reinforcing plate.

 

I have also seen where there is a bad part (say, a strut), and they replace it with another bad part, because it's a manufacturing problem with the part, not the car. Let's say 5% of the struts thump, then 10% of the cars have a thump. When they replace the struts, you still have a 10% chance of getting the thump back. The assumption is that it's not the strut because it didn't fix the problem, when in fact it IS the problem.

 

I'm wondering if anybody with the sound has ever done a suspension upgrade, and if that cured the problem.

 

Thanks for the ideas. It is more of a thumping noise, and I am certain that it is not the tire impacting the surface, but something actually making the noise in the suspension.

 

It can happen at very slight loads and unloads of the suspension. As a tire goes up the speed bump I get a thump, and then as is starts going down the speed bump, another thump.

 

I agree about the bad part replacing another bad part. I think the strut mount is a real poorly designed / manufactured part. The dealer said that the mounts that they pulled out of my car had alot more play in them than the new mounts. And I would say, at least at first when they were put in, it seemed to have been reduced. I think it has gotten worse in a few hundred miles again, so I am guessing the mounts are wearing again, maybe?

 

I know Ford redesigned the mounts for the non-GT500's, but the GT500's carry on with the old design with simply a harder rubber in the mount. Still the same poor design as the non-Gt500's prior to the TSB for those cars.

 

The most annoying part is that at super low speeds driving in a fast food lot, or bank, etc... it sounds like something that should be so easy to find, as it is pretty darn loud. It sounds like the strut mount is simply sloppy.

 

Maybe I am wrong and it will end up being an end-link of the suspension, or even steering rack or the bushings, etc...

 

It just seems that everytime the tire hits a straight on loading from the front, something move slightly ang goes "thunk" and then sometimes "thunk" again as it rebounds.....

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Thanks for the ideas. It is more of a thumping noise, and I am certain that it is not the tire impacting the surface, but something actually making the noise in the suspension.

 

It can happen at very slight loads and unloads of the suspension. As a tire goes up the speed bump I get a thump, and then as is starts going down the speed bump, another thump.

 

I agree about the bad part replacing another bad part. I think the strut mount is a real poorly designed / manufactured part. The dealer said that the mounts that they pulled out of my car had alot more play in them than the new mounts. And I would say, at least at first when they were put in, it seemed to have been reduced. I think it has gotten worse in a few hundred miles again, so I am guessing the mounts are wearing again, maybe?

 

I know Ford redesigned the mounts for the non-GT500's, but the GT500's carry on with the old design with simply a harder rubber in the mount. Still the same poor design as the non-Gt500's prior to the TSB for those cars.

 

The most annoying part is that at super low speeds driving in a fast food lot, or bank, etc... it sounds like something that should be so easy to find, as it is pretty darn loud. It sounds like the strut mount is simply sloppy.

 

Maybe I am wrong and it will end up being an end-link of the suspension, or even steering rack or the bushings, etc...

 

It just seems that everytime the tire hits a straight on loading from the front, something move slightly ang goes "thunk" and then sometimes "thunk" again as it rebounds.....

 

I had what I think was the same noise. It turned out to be the link rod connection to the sway bar. It was the upper connection on the passenger side. It's kind of a bitch to tighten, you have to put 9mm wrench on the bolt shaft and then tighten the 15mm nut. It's best to remove the tire.

 

Hope this helps

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  • 2 weeks later...

This sounds a lot like strut mounts to me. I have had the same problem in my 05 Mustang GT and had the strut mounts replaced last October. It solved the problem for a short while, but I am having them replaced in my GT again next week. Does anyone know when the GT strut mounts were redesigned? I wonder if the ones I got last October were old design or new design?

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have you taken this back to the dealer & found out what was causing the problem? The other GT500 owner just called me to see if you got yours fixed that I told him about?

 

Mine has not been fixed. Struts and strut mounts have been changed, but problem still exists. I think it is different, so it could still be the strut mounts, in my mind.

 

It seems like most cars don't do this, or I would think alot more poeple would jump in on these threads. I can't believe others are experiencing this and consider it normal, since I have never had a car that makes this much damn front end noise.

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This sounds a lot like strut mounts to me. I have had the same problem in my 05 Mustang GT and had the strut mounts replaced last October. It solved the problem for a short while, but I am having them replaced in my GT again next week. Does anyone know when the GT strut mounts were redesigned? I wonder if the ones I got last October were old design or new design?

 

I agree, I think it might be strut mounts. The GT / V6 strut mounts were redesigned about a year ago, and everybody that has had it done on GT / V6's says it is the miracle cure.

 

The problem is that, I believe the GT500 mount is still the crappy old mount with harder rubber. Point is that it is still the crappy mount.

 

That said, why isn't everybody having this problem? It seems like only a few of us seem to think out front ends are noisy, yet mine is so damn noisy, I swear the front clip is moving....

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