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Mechanical Maintenance (Oil, Fluids, Break-In, Servicing) Everything related to the mechanical maintenance of the FR-S and BRZ


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Old 07-02-2018, 04:18 PM   #1
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Front Driver Side Clunking - Already checked the usual suspects

After a week of sitting in the garage, and being washed by one of the garage guys (good dude, he's done it many times before), my BRZ has an annoying loud clunk from the front driver side that happens only when i hit a large bump.

Checked all the usual suspects myself, and had AZP do a quick check too. Checked the bracing connecting the strut tower to the firewall, the end links, all the nuts and bolts on the coilover, etc etc.

No idea what the hell the issue is. Current theory is that my coilover is giving out. Its a Tein Monosport with about 2 years and 10k miles on it. We decided to increase the damping setting on it, thinking maybe the clunk was from the coilover hitting its bump stops.

The noise is a little better after increasing the damping, but still there. I plan on going back to the shop again after a week or two for more opinions and see if we can figure it out.

Anyone here have ideas?

Also, if I do have to send my coilover in for a rebuild, wtf do I do with my car in the mean time? Do you guys just leave your car on blocks until the rebuilt coilover comes? Anyone know if Tein offers some kind of temporary replacement or swap program?
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Old 07-02-2018, 05:26 PM   #2
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1. Remove sway bar endlinks completely. Do drive-over test. See if it repeats.
2. Move coilovers from one side to the other. See if the sound follows the coilover (this is for systems that have internal struts you can remove and place in new bodies, like STi struts. Else, replace with a secondary strut to see if the noise remains).

When sending coilovers in for rebuilds, I have secondary suspension I put on the car. Quick align it with a tape measure or string it up.

Else, yes, leave it on jackstands.
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Old 07-02-2018, 09:25 PM   #3
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1. Remove sway bar endlinks completely. Do drive-over test. See if it repeats.
2. Move coilovers from one side to the other. See if the sound follows the coilover (this is for systems that have internal struts you can remove and place in new bodies, like STi struts. Else, replace with a secondary strut to see if the noise remains).

When sending coilovers in for rebuilds, I have secondary suspension I put on the car. Quick align it with a tape measure or string it up.

Else, yes, leave it on jackstands.
Since I don't even have a driveway to work on my car in, I'll suggest that to the shop the next time I go in, thanks.

And ugh... leaving the car on stands while waiting sounds like the more financially responsible idea, but its my only car. Sigh.
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Old 07-02-2018, 09:33 PM   #4
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Swap in a known good strut and drive around the block. I had bought megans many years ago on another car and this is how i confirmed the noise.

Other than that infind balljoints might not appear loose when you jack the car up because of suspension droop but make noise when drive and under load of the vehicle. Use a large channel locks to check for play
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Old 07-02-2018, 10:45 PM   #5
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Swap in a known good strut and drive around the block. I had bought megans many years ago on another car and this is how i confirmed the noise.

Other than that infind balljoints might not appear loose when you jack the car up because of suspension droop but make noise when drive and under load of the vehicle. Use a large channel locks to check for play
Or just kick the tires old school.
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Old 07-03-2018, 12:06 AM   #6
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Or just kick the tires old school.
That doesn't work with radial tires, old man



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Old 07-03-2018, 08:54 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by ZionsWrath View Post
Swap in a known good strut and drive around the block. I had bought megans many years ago on another car and this is how i confirmed the noise.

Other than that infind balljoints might not appear loose when you jack the car up because of suspension droop but make noise when drive and under load of the vehicle. Use a large channel locks to check for play
I had AZP check it for me too, so I assume they checked the endlinks properly.

Its looking more and more like the strut is the issue here.

Current plan:
1. Going back to AZP on the 18th
2. If it really is the strut, I'm going to see if I can just order a single strut from Tein and how much it'd cost.
3. Either order the replacement and mount while old one gets rebuilt, or just leave my car on jack stands.

Tein Monosport Coilovers are $1,600-ish new, so hopefully a single one is just $400-500 with shipping :\
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Old 07-03-2018, 09:12 AM   #8
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Front Driver Side Clunking - Already checked the usual suspects

It could be the power steering unit under the dash. Does it sound like it's coming from behind the steering wheel on your side of the firewall?

The power steering unit has had known issues with rattling when large inputs FROM the wheels need to be soaked up (bumps, bad roads, vibrations from the brakes). Annoying thing is that it functions as intended, the noise is a byproduct of the PS box soaking up those inputs. It backdrives the PS gearbox and some % of the units have enough lash in the gears that they make noise. It also gets worse if you have significantly lighter than stock wheels, since they have less inertia to absorb bumps.

Mine does it, and you have 2 options: replace the PS unit on your own dime, or live with it.
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Old 07-03-2018, 10:11 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by Yoshoobaroo View Post
It could be the power steering unit under the dash. Does it sound like it's coming from behind the steering wheel on your side of the firewall?

The power steering unit has had known issues with rattling when large inputs FROM the wheels need to be soaked up (bumps, bad roads, vibrations from the brakes). Annoying thing is that it functions as intended, the noise is a byproduct of the PS box soaking up those inputs. It backdrives the PS gearbox and some % of the units have enough lash in the gears that they make noise. It also gets worse if you have significantly lighter than stock wheels, since they have less inertia to absorb bumps.

Mine does it, and you have 2 options: replace the PS unit on your own dime, or live with it.
Nah pretty sure it isnt that because I can feel the "clunk" through the dead pedal with my foot.
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Old 08-09-2018, 01:26 AM   #10
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@PandaSPUR did you ever figure this out?
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Old 08-22-2018, 03:41 PM   #11
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Bump on this problem! I can feel the thump/clunk from the pedals especially when slowing down. Already removed the end link to the driver side and problem isn't as noticeable but still there. Going to check all the bolts to make sure they are tight but what else can cause the clunking noise and also give the feel in the pedals?
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Old 08-22-2018, 03:48 PM   #12
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Ignoring reply as all troubleshooting I listed above would need to be done by @Bach415 as well.

Remove ALL front end links.

Swap the struts/suspension.

On older STis, this was always from the struts. I am not as familiar with the BRZs, and if this is common there.

Zerk fittings on the older inverted STi struts was a solution.
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Old 08-24-2018, 04:33 AM   #13
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Check the brakes, make sure they are greased and not sticking. For me, it was a brake pad clunking around.
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Old 08-24-2018, 12:01 PM   #14
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Forgot to update this once I had it fixed. The issue turned out to be the top nut on the front driver-side coilover. It was pretty loose, I didn't notice since my car wasnt lifted when I checked myself. Once it was on the lift, the nut could be hand loosened.
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