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  #1  
Old 12-15-2008, 08:59 AM
arseNal arseNal is offline
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creaking sound from front end of car when braking or coming from stop

Hi folks, I have an 02 subaru impreza wrx and my problem is basically what's described in the subject. When I brake, it makes a creaking noise that also often occurs when I start the car moving from a stop. The noise is coming from somewhere in the front end.

Is this a suspension problem? I've never replaced the struts or anything and the car already has almost 120K miles (tho 90% highway).

Thanks

Last edited by arseNal; 12-15-2008 at 08:59 AM..
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  #2  
Old 12-15-2008, 09:43 AM
Santo Rugger Santo Rugger is offline
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When was the last time you had your brake pads replaced?
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Old 12-15-2008, 12:04 PM
Gary T Gary T is offline
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Some noises can be really hard to track down even when they're consistent and one has the actual car to work with. As you can imagine, to work with only a verbal description makes it even harder. The more complete and detailed the description, the better chance we'll come up with helpful insight. In this case, we'd like to know the duration of the sound. Does it occur once briefly (say, a half second) during a stop or take-off? Does it occur continuously throughout the act of stopping? Does it recur several times during one stop? Does it come on the instant the brake pedal is depressed?

That said, I'm going to guess it's one-time brief noise that is more likely to occur in vigorous stopping or taking off, which makes the front end of the car pitch down or up, respectively. This would be typical of a suspension component that normally moves but is dried out, or that doesn't normally move and has worn a bit loose. The most likely suspects are control arm bushings, ball joints, and stabilizer bar bushings or links. Struts are also a possibility, though less likely. With the noise sometimes occurring on take-off, brake components are extremely unlikely.
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Old 12-15-2008, 12:25 PM
Turble Turble is offline
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Anecdote: Years ago I bought a used AMC Matador that developed a creaking sound like you describe. It eventually turned in what can be described as a MAJOR squeak that would attract attention from half a block away. Turned out to be a grease fitting hidden up inside the front suspension that apparently no had ever noticed was dried out.
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  #5  
Old 12-15-2008, 12:44 PM
Tom Tildrum Tom Tildrum is offline
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My Volvo C70 would occasionally make noises like this and would need to have to its struts greased (or something like that).

Alternatively, you may have a family of opossums living under the hood.
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  #6  
Old 12-15-2008, 01:05 PM
diggleblop diggleblop is offline
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It's more than likely your break pads. Very inexpensive problem to fix, so don't let someone charge you more than 80 bucks to do it.
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  #7  
Old 12-15-2008, 01:08 PM
Sparky812 Sparky812 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by diggleblop View Post
It's more than likely your break pads. Very inexpensive problem to fix, so don't let someone charge you more than 80 bucks to do it.
I guess you don't own a subaru, LOL
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Old 12-15-2008, 02:20 PM
arseNal arseNal is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Santo Rugger View Post
When was the last time you had your brake pads replaced?
Well, it has been a while, and I will check them out, thanks. Tho I've had lots of brake issues in the past with other cars and the sound doesn't really match anything I've ever heard from a brake or caliper or whatever.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gary T View Post
Does it occur once briefly (say, a half second) during a stop or take-off? Does it occur continuously throughout the act of stopping? Does it recur several times during one stop? Does it come on the instant the brake pedal is depressed?

That said, I'm going to guess it's one-time brief noise that is more likely to occur in vigorous stopping or taking off, which makes the front end of the car pitch down or up, respectively. This would be typical of a suspension component that normally moves but is dried out, or that doesn't normally move and has worn a bit loose. The most likely suspects are control arm bushings, ball joints, and stabilizer bar bushings or links. Struts are also a possibility, though less likely. With the noise sometimes occurring on take-off, brake components are extremely unlikely.
Yep, your guess is pretty close. It does seem to occur when the nose of the car pitches -- it doesn't seem to match up with me actually stepping on the brake pedal. It's not a long drawn out groan, it's a very quick creak or series of creaks that some people might even describe as almost pops or thunks (but creak is the closest description IMO).

Ok, so if it's bushings/joints, it's less of an expense than a strut job right? Hopefully that's what it is, then.

Thanks for all the replies. A family of possums would be pretty sweet.
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