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Grinding/squeak noise. Possible wheel bearing?

02-28-2008, 05:51 PM
whenever i go over a bump or turn too hard to the left i hear a grinding noise from the front passenger strut area. also when i turn right the wheel squeaks but not to the left. fluid levels all check out. the suspension seems ok. the breaks are new and so are the rotors. i'm thinking it's the wheel bearing. also when anyone sits in my back seat it seems to ride a bit rough and sounds like something is dragging but nothing is lose or dragging on the ground. the sound seems like it's coming from the rear suspension area but i can't be sure. any ideas?

02-28-2008, 09:35 PM
Welcome to the forum!

Per the forum guidelines, please use a title that is descriptive of your question. No point in causing people to read your post if they have no input for this topic, or possibly skipping over it because of the non-descript title when they may have a very concise answer to your problem. I've modified the thread title this time, but please keep the guidelines in mind for future posts.

What year and body Taurus do you have? Is the "grinding noise" definitely a grinding noise, or could it be described as a rumble? Is the noise speed related, or is it only while you're turning the steering wheel?

As for the squek when turning right, is that squeak from the suspension/steering area, or from the steering wheel area? If from the suspension/steering area, I'd suspect that you have a dry ball joint or outer tie rod end. This is pretty common on some model years of Fords. Depending on the "grinding noise" the same part could be the source of both noises.

There have been posts on this forum before on ways to track down dry ball joints and outer tie rod ends. I'll let you become familiar with the "Search this forum" tool from the Taurus forum main page to find those suggestions rather than re-type them again.


02-29-2008, 02:32 AM
You might want to have someone drive for you while you listen to the noises in different parts of your car to be sure of the source(s) of your sounds. Your symptoms make one think a wheel bearing is involved but a sneaky one will actually be a rear one when you think it's up front. Or you have two problems going on. Like Rod said, a creaking, squeaking sound is very common at the lower ball joints and outer tie rod end. A clunking up front frequently is the sway bar link. Grinding, thumping, whirring, moaning, scraping sounds are consistent with a bad bearing. Raise your vehicle and grab your tire on the outer perimeter and try to wiggle it in and out, left to right and top to bottom with alternating pulling and pushing. Any feeling of looseness indicates something is worn. The feeling of looseness is subtle until you get a feel for it. It will feel a gentle click or tap if it's there. Typically looseness felt left left to right involves the tie rods. Top to bottom indicates the lower ball joint. Having someone do this while you look and feel for movement is best to eliminate them as worn so you can test for wheel bearing play. Unfortunately, some have found no play in a noisy bearing that needed replacement. I have found that when you rock the tire side to side and top to bottom and even diagonally, you may find play that is only from a wheel bearing when the play seems to go away temporarily when spinning the tire and then checking it for play again. That wouldn't happen with the tie rods and bjoints. Spinning the tire by hand may not reveal anything noticeably wrong, but some have tried running the tire in drive, secured safely from moving, and used a listening device on the steering knuckle. They may have removed the tire. Whatever you are comfortable doing.

03-03-2008, 04:04 PM
I apologize, Rod, for the thread name. It slipped my mind with the car stuff going on.

It's a 2000 Ford Taurus SES. The noise is most definitely a grinding noise. It's not speed related. It only happens when going over speed bumps or any dips in the road, and it doesn't happen every time. Once it starts though everytime I stop at a stoplight it just grinds and grinds until I come to a stop. I've found shifting into neutral when braking helps but not sure why. I try not to do that too much while driving, only when it just won't stop. When turning, the grinding noise only happens when hitting a bump or pothole or something when turning left, making me almost positive it's the front passenger wheel. The rear ones I've had my father sit in the back on both sides and it came out more when he was on the passenger side than the driver side, but both are definitely acting up. The squeaking when turning right is in the steering wheel though it might just be vibrating from something further down. I'm thinking you're right and it might be a dry ball joint.

The car is currently in my friend's shop for some exhaust work so I might have him and his crew check everything out for me. Thanks for the advice so far. I'll pass it onto my friend and see what we find. I'll repost the results once everything is fixed or if anything else pops up.

03-03-2008, 08:22 PM
You can try injecting grease through the dust boot of the suspension components one at a time to see if any one item helps with the noise. I use a small pick and a spray can of white lithium grease. Once I find the culprit, I replace it because I know the grease is just a short-term diagnostic aid and won't remedy the noise for more than a week or so.


03-08-2008, 12:19 AM
Ok I've got a real brainteaser here. I just got my Taurus back and while it was in the shop for the exhaust I figured they could replace some other parts as well. I had them replace the starter, the waterpump, the ignition switch, and the tensioner since it had cracked while I'd tried to get the other parts out. Here's the kicker. They didn't touch the suspension and yet the grinding noise is gone. The squeaking is still there so I probably still have to grease up that ball joint. I've gone over every bump, and not really slow either and nothing. I'm thinking the grinding might have been the tensioner flexing at the point it broke or one of the other parts that was replaced had something wrong like I figured and it was just being amplified through the wheel well since everything was next to that side where I heard the grinding noise. That could explain why it would help when shifting to neutral because the rpms wouldn't be as high. I'll be listening to see if the grinding sound returns, but from the way I've run it since I got it without even a creak I think it was something along the serpentine belt that was replaced.

07-08-2008, 05:18 PM
strut bearing

07-08-2008, 10:45 PM
could be a bearing.the other on strut bearing is on top of strut called a upper bearing plate..or stableliser links and bushing as the other guy brung up..

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