Why Is My Car Making This Noise?

I am going to take it to the mechanic, but I probably won’t be able to do that until Friday. It doesn’t seem to be acting any differently other than the noise, so it doesn’t seem to be an emergency.

It’s a 2002 Saturn. I’ve only had it for a few weeks, and it just started making this noise the other day. Right after I turn the key, it makes this noise like “pew”, but low-pitched, not high. Just the once, and only right after starting.

Anybody have any ideas?

No, I didn’t buy the extended warranty.

This probably belongs in IMHO, come to think of it. Sorry, mods.

It might be normal, just the anti-lock brake system doing a self test. My 4Runner used to make a noise similar to that and the dealer said not to worry about it.

That would be good. I hope that’s it.

Tough to say without you maybe elaborating more on the noise, but it could just be the fuel pump priming, which is normal when you turn the key right before starting the car.

ETA: Does the noise seem to be coming from underneath the back seat area? Maybe have someone sit back there with their ear to the seat. If the noise is coming from there, it’s definitely the fuel pump.

I’ll have my son listen when I start it up here in a few, but it seems like it’s coming from behind the instrument panel area. It may have been doing it from the beginning, but I just started noticing it, I’m not sure.

“Turn the key” is vague in this context. Do you hear the sound when the key is turned to “ON” but NOT yet to start (i.e. instrument panel warning lights on, engine not running)? Or only after the key is turned to “START” and the engine is running?

Just after starting, maybe even while starting. The sound is familiar, but I can’t put my finger on what it sounds like.

Fuel pump
Retractable antenna
Air duct opening or closing
Beeper or Buzzer not working right

There are a lot more possibilities. But it does remind of some car that would make a sound from the air duct. I can’t recall the car.

Sounds like the ABS kicking in. Maybe you are just getting used to the car’s sounds after owning it awhile.

Apparently it’s the starter going bad. And also I need new motor mounts. Sigh.

I just wanted you all to have closure. Thanks for the guesses.

Okay, scratch that. That’s just what some guy who’s a mechanic but not my mechanic told me after looking at the car the other day.

Today I did take it to my mechanic, who told me that the noise could be some gear? that the starter pushes, but that it’s not big deal, it could take another two years before it goes bad. No need to replace the starter right now. And the motor mounts are fine- the shaking from the rear end was the muffler hanging low. He welded it up, and the whole thing cost me $40 instead of the $700+ that I was anticipating. :D:D:D

I just found this mechanic recently, and am very impressed that he was honest with me, even though I had it in my mind that these things were wrong with it, and I would’ve paid for it without question. I love an honest mechanic!