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Given: 1991 164S aftermarket wheels sporting 245 45 17 tires. Otherwise a stock suspension and drivetrain. Klunking sound when turn is initiated from a stop or at slow speeds. Very prevalent (embarassing) in parking lots.

Action: replaced lower control arms complete with bushings and ball joints, sway bar and bushings and lollipop links.
Results: Klunking persists.

Action: replaced lower strut bearing (yellow) as well as bump stops and dust boots.
Results: noticable improvement in handling stability. Klunking sound persists.

Querry: Could the steeering rack be making this noise? The CV joints are another possibility, but I ruled them out since it is not a continuous crunching. That's why I characterized the sound as knuckles cracking. Lastly, could it be the bearing at the top of the strut? They seem fine to the human touch, but I realize that's nothing like the loads they carry.

What does the collective experience of this brain trust have to say? Anybody dare to beat Alfisto Steve to the punch?
 

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1991 164L
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Anybody? Chime in now. Sick dog has me up way to early or late depending on how you define it. I was sleeping soundly unitl 12:15. a.m.

Jason will tell you it is over torqued upper nut against upper bearing in top mount so maybe that is it, but you had noise before all this work right?
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Steve,

Sorry about your dog.

Yes the noise was there before. About those top strut nuts... what a bugger without a special tool or pnuematic tools. The torque spec is 60 psi, I think, but I just kind of let er have it. Pretty risky with a $1,000 strut!
 

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1991 164L
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So can you pin it down to either side or the other?

Electric struts still?
 

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clac clac clac clac.... If that more or less is the cracking sound, my money is on CV joints.
 

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Discussion Starter #6 (Edited)
Predominately the right side. Yes stock electric adjustable struts. Run 90% of the time in "Sport" mode. Side Bar- you know, the Auto/Sport nomentclature should really be changed to With Wife/Without Wife.

No,no,no If your knuckles pop with a clack, please see a Dr. :)
 

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lol!! OK, so it's a popping. OK, that sounds a bit too odd...
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Its a really uncomfortable sound. But at parking lot speeds, what's the worst that can happen? Now if I could hear the same sound as I'm pinching the apex on my favorite freeway ramp at twice the posted speed, I might wet myself! So is ignorance really bliss. or just stupidity?
 

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1991 164L
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I wonder if it is a CV joint? Are inner and outer CV rubber boots good?
 

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What about jacking up the front end and turning the steering lock to lock whilse spinning the wheel? Bad CV joint should make a noise on full lock even if the suspension is not under load.
 

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The single clunk sound you get when backing out of a spot in a parking spot and having to crank the steering wheel from one side to the other, etc? I have just learned to live with it. No amount of parts replacement has ever cured my car. Loosening the strut nut has proven to not fix it on my car as well. I don't get embarrassed about it because I don't think anybody outside the car would hear it or even notice it. Mine does it all the time and has never been a safety issue in my opinion. I just ignore it because I know all the parts under there have been inspected and are good and others on this forum have the same issue even after replacing everything. :rolleyes:
Charles
 

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Given: 1991 164S aftermarket wheels sporting 245 45 17 tires. Otherwise a stock suspension and drivetrain. Klunking sound when turn is initiated from a stop or at slow speeds. Very prevalent (embarassing) in parking lots.

Action: replaced lower control arms complete with bushings and ball joints, sway bar and bushings and lollipop links.
Results: Klunking persists.

Action: replaced lower strut bearing (yellow) as well as bump stops and dust boots.
Results: noticable improvement in handling stability. Klunking sound persists.

Querry: Could the steeering rack be making this noise? The CV joints are another possibility, but I ruled them out since it is not a continuous crunching. That's why I characterized the sound as knuckles cracking. Lastly, could it be the bearing at the top of the strut? They seem fine to the human touch, but I realize that's nothing like the loads they carry.
?
Are you really running 245's?? That is a MUCH wider tire than stock, and is going to generate significantly more friction for the steering system to cope with at low speeds/stopped.

What's the offset of your wheels (changed scrub angle??)? I'm shocked you could run 245's without serious rubbing or modification. My guess is you meant 225, but that's still a much larger tire than stock.

You may want to jack up front end completely and then support A-arms to compress suspension, then turn full lock left then right and see if you recreate sound.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Yeah they are 225s. I must have been dreaming thinking 245!
 

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The single clunk sound you get when backing out of a spot in a parking spot and having to crank the steering wheel from one side to the other, etc? I have just learned to live with it. No amount of parts replacement has ever cured my car. Loosening the strut nut has proven to not fix it on my car as well. I don't get embarrassed about it because I don't think anybody outside the car would hear it or even notice it. Mine does it all the time and has never been a safety issue in my opinion. I just ignore it because I know all the parts under there have been inspected and are good and others on this forum have the same issue even after replacing everything. :rolleyes:
Charles
I have the same issue. Is this a popping sound when turning slowly only? Or also just accelerating from a stop heading straight?
I have an idea what it is but there is really nothing that can be done. I think it is the steering rack inner rod ball joint. I think at some certain angles it tends to stick and pop. I have tried to pin point this problem for hundred years and nothing cures it. Nothing.
I have re-greased the inner tie rods and outer to see if that helped and it did not. I have felt the pop in the tie rod.

Just forget about it. :)
 

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Discussion Starter #15
If nothing cures it, not even replacing the rack, then I will learn to live with it. I mask it best I can by revving the engine to mask it. At least I can enjoy that sound more often
 

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Are the ends of the springs enclosed in new PVC tubing?
I've found that reduces clunks and creaks in slow-speed manoeuvring. It is, though, more suitable for a mild climate and I always de-rust/paint the springs and fit the tubing with grease.

The originally-fitted tubing will have worn through by now and leads to chronic rusting under the right (wrong) conditions.

-Alex
 

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I hate this problem. It's so horrid sounding. Does anyone else notice it seems to dissipate after driving through a car wash or foot of water? The freeway was flooded yesterday and I had to drive through...but the noise had subsided.
 

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I think Alex is right, it is the spring shifting in either the upper perch or the lower perch when turning at a standstill or very slow speeds that causes this noise. It almost can't be anything else, because parts have been swapped and nothing else fixes it. Perhaps spraying the springs at the perches with a lube will cure it temporarily? I have not tried that. I heard Click & Clack on NPR discussing this very thing (on another car) just this morning, and it made sense to me for the 164's issue.
Charles
 
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