Nothing could be worse than driving home after a long day at work and hearing a strange knocking or pinging sound coming from under the hood of your vehicle. Well, it could be worse…you could be driving on a deserted highway around 10pm at night and hear the sound. Wherever you may find yourself, this is not music to your ears. Your next thought may be to erupt into a full-fledged panic because you are sure this is an eminent sign that your vehicle is just about to break down.
While this may be a bit melodramatic to take this approach, there are reasons to be concerned if your car is creaking and groaning. Your vehicle is not throwing a temper tantrum, but it is clearly trying to get your attention. Although you may maintenance your vehicle regularly and track its progress on an online e-log, there are things that can still go wrong between service visits.
It is good to be proactive about these early warning signals and address them as soon as possible rather than hoping that the sound does not return. By addressing these potential problems early, you can save yourself the hassle of bigger repair bills in the future.
While some noise from cars makes us happy and excited, such as the rumble of the engine or the hum from the shifting gears, there are other sounds that are not what we want to hear. It could be a rattle, scrape, squeak, groan, pinging, or a thumping sound. Some sounds speed up as the vehicle accelerates while others are steady or rhythmic.
Whatever the reason, it is a clear signal that there is a problem.
Any of the aforementioned sounds means that it is time to get your vehicle serviced so the noise can be diagnosed and fixed before the problem gets worse.
While noise may be one of the most obvious signs that something is wrong with your vehicle, there are other symptoms to keep in mind and look into if they appear. There are other sensory experiences that tell us something does not “feel” right about our vehicle.
You may sense a change in the way the car is handling or if it is pulling to one side. You may see strange stains under the car. And you may smell something that gives off an unpleasant odor. Here are some signals that you will need to follow-up on with a service visit if they happen:
While you may feel apprehensive about tracking any vehicle breakdowns and repairs, it is a good way to gauge performance and identify other deeper issues about the vehicle that should be addressed. Additionally, and prospective buyer might appreciate the detailed notes that you have kept on your maintenance log about what was right and what went wrong.
Many of the signs and symptoms mentioned in this article could be avoided if you stick to a regular maintenance plan or work with a company that provides you with reminders about service through your smart phone.
The sound of modern cars can be inspiring. What you don’t want to hear are the abnormal and annoying warning sounds that may let you know that things aren’t all good under the hood.
Many automotive issues can alter the noises your car makes. For example, poor alignment can cause squeaking when taking a turn. However, certain vehicle noises indicate the need for immediate maintenance. In this blog, we list some common warning sounds that tell you to take your vehicle to a reputable service centre as soon as possible.
Engine squeaking may almost sound like there’s a bird trapped under your hood, or it may sound squeakier. The squeaks will likely happen intermittently and may change frequency depending on the type of driving you’re doing.
The sound usually occurs when a timing or serpentine belt in the engine becomes loose or damaged. Some automotive belts can be adjusted, while others must be replaced. If left unaddressed, loose belts can cause permanent engine damage. Excessive belt wear could even cause a belt to break while you’re driving.
While many car noises come from the engine or undercarriage, they can happen inside your cabin as well. Your steering wheel can make a clacking or clicking noise when you turn.
The clicks may indicate low power steering fluid or damage to a component in the steering column. These issues tend to progress over time, making the vehicle harder to manoeuvre as the problem develops.
Some engine noises sound like they originate from the hood itself rather than what lies beneath it. You may hear clunking or banging that sounds like someone keeping time by tapping on your hood.
Tapping that happens in a rhythm can signal an issue with the pistons or connecting rods in your engine. It’s vital to find the source of the sound quickly to avoid costly repairs of damage to the engine caused by the affected pistons or rods.
Ideally, your brakes should be virtually silent when you come to a normal, complete stop. Any brake noise should be investigated by a professional.
If your brakes start to sound like they’re grinding to a halt, the components of the brakes are touching directly, which can damage the rotor. Once this level of damage occurs, your brake system may become unsafe and unpredictable.
Not all clicking when you turn comes directly from the steering wheel. Popping and clicking noises may also seem to come from one or both of the front wheels. Generally, this type of popping will stop when you start driving straight again.
The noise most likely indicates that you have a damaged constant velocity, or CV, joint in the front axle. Without replacement, the joint could become completely useless and dramatically impact your vehicle’s handling.
Many automotive noises are reminiscent of another sound. Rattling from your wheels often resembles the sound a small object would make while turning over in a clothes dryer.
The rattling noise means that something isn’t right with the way your wheels are attached to the car. For example, a lug nut may have come loose and started rattling as the wheel turned around. Have your tyres and wheels checked as soon as possible.
Roaring noises from under your car may be similar to the sound of going over a bridge on a windy day, except the noises don’t stop once you hit solid road again.
This noise almost always comes from an issue with the wheels. You may need to replace your tyres, have the bearings tightened or replaced, or have your tyres balanced to solve the issue.
Like the grinding brake sounds we discussed in section four, squealing or screeching brakes necessitate immediate maintenance. The screeching may happen whenever you tap your brakes initially, but it could occur anytime you use the brakes if you don’t have the noise checked out.
In many cases, screeching comes right before grinding sounds develop. You may not have enough brake pad thickness to keep the metal components from touching. If you catch this early, you may only need to replace the pads. However, unsolved brake problems can cause brake failure.
If you notice any of these sounds, don’t wait to find out what they mean for the future of your vehicle. Take your car for an inspection and routine maintenance. Prompt action on your part can keep your car’s engine purring contentedly for years to come no matter where the road ahead takes you.