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Rattling noise in front end when driving over small bumps?

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Old 04-13-14, 01:51 PM   #1
PDXLex
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Default Rattling noise in front end when driving over small bumps?

I have a '00 ES 300 with 160k that is making a rattling noise in the front end near each wheel when driving over small bumps or rough pavement. It almost sounds like a bunch of loose bolts. Oddly enough it seems much worse and more noticeable on colder days. This morning I drove it about 10 miles and I could hear it mostly the entire time. Yet when I drove it home a bit later and the outside temperature reached about 70 degrees, it was barely noticeable and the ride was quite smooth and quiet. The original struts are a lil rougher than my last ES, but I'm not entirely sure this rattling noise is related to that. The car still seems pretty smooth and handles relatively large bumps and pot holes fairly well. Any ideas what this sound could be and why it seems to be more prominent during colder temperatures?
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Last edited by PDXLex; 04-13-14 at 01:55 PM..
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Old 04-13-14, 02:32 PM   #2
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strut mounts... it's inevitable and inescapable in any 3ES...

My non-oem mounts started doing this 3 months after I had them done.

Turn up the radio and carry on.
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Old 04-13-14, 03:51 PM   #3
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strut mounts... it's inevitable and inescapable in any 3ES...

My non-oem mounts started doing this 3 months after I had them done.

Turn up the radio and carry on.
Lol, I've definitely been turning up the radio as a quick fix. Funny you say it's inevitable in all 3 ES, because my last '97 that I owned never made a peep of a noise for the 5 years I owned it up to 230k. Guess I got lucky. Is it worth just replacing the strut mounts and nothing else or would that be just plain stupid to not do the struts as well while you have everything torn apart?
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Old 04-13-14, 04:23 PM   #4
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It would be stupid not to do the struts at the same time. Don't cheap out on the hardware, as mentioned previously. Your choice of struts will play a huge role in your ride as well.

For the front, you will need two strut mounts, two struts, and two strut bearings.

The rear will only need struts and strut mounts.

I can help you with any strut related questions you may have. Let me know.

P.s.: I had a front end noise that I thought was coming from my struts, it turned out to be my hood latch.

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Old 04-13-14, 10:08 PM   #5
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Thanks Mr. Booby, I actually plan to use your write up, should I go the route of installing new struts myself. I'm actually disappointed to hear the results of the Tokiko blues you used, as well as the results of the KYB struts that 'Avory' used in the post you commented on. The local tire/suspension shop near my house claims the KYB's will be as close to OEM as I can get and they will 'soften up' overtime. Clearly, from what I've read on here, that sounds like some BS. On the flipside, I was quoted $950 for all 4 KYB struts and hardware installed plus an alignment. I'm also open to saving some cash and doing it myself. I'm definitely looking to do this on as much of a budget as possible. Any input is welcome. Thanks!
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Old 04-14-14, 01:38 AM   #6
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Are your sway bar links original? They are pretty easy to check - just grab them with your hand and see if they are loose and noisy. They are cheap and easy to replace. Deeza (my favorite) gets consistently high quality marks here, other Toyota/Lexus forums and BITOG. "Rattling" points to sway bar links whereas "clunking" points to strut mounts.
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Old 04-14-14, 09:50 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PDXLex View Post
Thanks Mr. Booby, I actually plan to use your write up, should I go the route of installing new struts myself. I'm actually disappointed to hear the results of the Tokiko blues you used, as well as the results of the KYB struts that 'Avory' used in the post you commented on. The local tire/suspension shop near my house claims the KYB's will be as close to OEM as I can get and they will 'soften up' overtime. Clearly, from what I've read on here, that sounds like some BS. On the flipside, I was quoted $950 for all 4 KYB struts and hardware installed plus an alignment. I'm also open to saving some cash and doing it myself. I'm definitely looking to do this on as much of a budget as possible. Any input is welcome. Thanks!
The DIY route is cheaper but very time consuming and challenging, especially if you reuse your stock springs and other components.

I'm in the process of getting Lexus struts and I just repainted my original springs that will go back as well. I can do a write up on that as well.

The Tokico struts and Tanabe springs will be available for sale. They have softened up after a year of driving, but they're still too harsh for my style of driving (long highway cruising).

Lastly, make sure your problem is in the strut mounts before you spend all that money. No shop will reimburse you for their mistake.
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Old 04-14-14, 12:29 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by artbuc View Post
Are your sway bar links original? They are pretty easy to check - just grab them with your hand and see if they are loose and noisy. They are cheap and easy to replace. Deeza (my favorite) gets consistently high quality marks here, other Toyota/Lexus forums and BITOG. "Rattling" points to sway bar links whereas "clunking" points to strut mounts.
Thanks, I need to investigate the sway bar links a little further. The mechanic I talked to also suggested this as well (without looking at the car). It's definitley way more of a 'rattle' than a 'clunk'.
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Old 04-14-14, 08:13 PM   #9
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I'm assuming this is the sway bar link (see pic below)? If so, I jiggled it around and it feels nice and sturdy. It does seem to swivel side to side, but feels normal. Nothing feels loose and nothing makes any noise. I guess I should rule out sway bar links and bet on it being the strut mounts.
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Old 04-15-14, 01:21 AM   #10
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Yes, that is the link. Check all four.
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Old 04-16-14, 07:14 AM   #11
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Next time you hear the rattle lightly apply your brakes and listen if the noise disappears. I had a rattle that was caused by loose disc pads. I replaced the pad clips and the noise was gone.
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Old 04-24-14, 07:39 PM   #12
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Check the motor mounts also. There is a small "strut bar" (idk the name) on the pasenger side, attached to the motor and goes to where the strut bolts to the side firewall. Kinda resembles a small dumbell. the rubber inside it on mine was gone, so the bar rattled a lot. Let me know if u cant find it, ill send a picture
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Old 04-25-14, 01:42 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lexusdod View Post
Check the motor mounts also. There is a small "strut bar" (idk the name) on the pasenger side, attached to the motor and goes to where the strut bolts to the side firewall. Kinda resembles a small dumbell. the rubber inside it on mine was gone, so the bar rattled a lot. Let me know if u cant find it, ill send a picture
Common term is dog bone.
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Old 04-27-14, 01:03 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by lexusdod View Post
Check the motor mounts also. There is a small "strut bar" (idk the name) on the pasenger side, attached to the motor and goes to where the strut bolts to the side firewall. Kinda resembles a small dumbell. the rubber inside it on mine was gone, so the bar rattled a lot. Let me know if u cant find it, ill send a picture
Is this the dogbone in the pic below? If so, I notice a crack in the rubber. You think that could be the culprit?
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Old 04-28-14, 01:57 AM   #15
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Originally Posted by PDXLex View Post
Is this the dogbone in the pic below? If so, I notice a crack in the rubber. You think that could be the culprit?
Yes, that is it. Can you tell if it is a surface crack or does it go all the way through?
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Old 04-28-14, 01:57 AM
 
 
 
 
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300, bumps, car, end, front, hit, hood, inside, lexus, makes, noise, rattles, rattling, small, solve, toyota

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