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Discussion Starter #1
hi all

I have an 89 lebaron coupe and I am getting a rubbing/creaking noise as I drive down the road. it seems to happen when I go over bumps straight or turning. I am at a loss here because everything seems tight.

The struts are brand new less then a year old.
the tire rods, lower control arms, ball joints seem fine. There is no play in the steering or any play when you try to move the wheel 12/6 or 9/3 so that rules out wheel bearings.

what else could this be?

The rear has new shocks which are torqued down properly
 

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When the struts were replaced, were the upper mounts (bearing plates) replaced? Often you won't feel slop there but they can sure be noisy.
 

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+1 on the sway bar bushings. Make sure the new ones fit snugly on the bar. If the bar is out of round and badly worn, the new bushings will creak and make noise. The inner bushings are a split design, IIRC and the outer ones are a one-piece "doughnut" design. If the bar needs to be replaced, the Daytona had a bigger bar that should improve your handling.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
the struts were replaced by midas and it does say that they replaced the upper hardware. when they did the alignment they forgot to torque down the lower strut bolts and that was fun believe me.

Is there a good way to change out the bushings on the sway bar with out having to remove the whole thing? For example can I just unbolt one side, change it out, and then rebolt it.. repeat for the other side or do I have to unbolt the whole thing?

As far as the daytona bar, will any year do or is there a specific year? I know in 1990 they changed the lebaron interior considerably..just wondering if they changed the mecanics..
 

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Daytonas and other EEKs had at least two different diameter bars, and you have to measure with calipers to be sure which one you've got. If you mismatch bars and bushings, you're asking for trouble.

I can't see any savings in unbolting half the bar and struggling while the other half is in place. There are no alignment issues with them.
 

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+2 on swaybar bushings. I went through this myself a few month ago. Bob L is correct--it's much easier to do by dropping the whole bar. You'll want to tighten the whole thing up as a unit, too: tightening one side while the other is loose my cause problems (it did on my Sundance).
 

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Discussion Starter #8
ok it looks like I will have to bite the bullet and drop the bar to change out all the bushings. I got raybestos bushings from the local autopart store for bar. Hopefully it will stop this noise. damn things are cheep.

I am also having to replace brake lines since they are old and developing cracks. This thing has the easiest brake system to work on considering it is 4 wheel disc.
 

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Thanks for this post. I'd written "swaybar bushings" on my to-do list, just based on all the work I've done already and similar noises, so it sounds like a correct diagnosis for me, too. Looking in the various repair manuals, looks like the only hard part might be bolts that don't want to come out.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
ok .. so I found the problem and yes it was the outer sway bar bushings.The driver side is actually broken causng the sway bar to "bang" against the control arm. it is physically touching. thanks to all that replied to me. now the question is how do I get at the nuts holding the sway bar to the control arm? I can get at one but the the other is sort of blocked by the CV axle.

How have others gotten that out?
 

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Should just be a bolt on the bottom. If you're looking at a nut, it may be welded to the control arm to give the bolt something to thread into. I've never taken the sway bar off any other way than removing the bolts from the bottom of the bushing brackets.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
b10alia. on my lower control arms there are two nuts that I have to hold in order to get the sway bar clamp loose. on the frame to bar there is only bolts on the bottom. They are 15 mm nuts. I bought a middle range socket just to see if I can get it to hold it while I spin off the bolts. I really really do not want to have to pull an axle
 

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Yes, it can be a bear on these older cars. I think I had to wedge an offset box wrench in over the nut on my 87 or perhaps it was a deep well socket with a wobble or u-joint adapter. All of that goes away in later years when they started using a nut with a flat piece of steel welded on it (so it doesn't turn when you loosen/tighten the bolt). Soak the nuts with PB blaster, Kroil, Nuts Off or equivalent penetrent.
 

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Well there's the reason, I have a '95. Seems like a bit of a stupid design to me in the first place though, to have a nut separate from the control arm instead of welded to it.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
yeah it is a stupid and fustrating design.. it is driving me nuts because none of my sockets fit with the stupid axle in the way. I do not want to pull the axle because that will just be a royal pain in the [I should have my mouth washed out with soap for using such terms]. but hey it happens. just got to try to solve it
 

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Discussion Starter #16
ok.. I managed to replace all 4 bushings .. and while it is alot quiter I still have a rub noise when I brake... the pads are good from what I can tell.. it still happens also when I turn too..I do not know what else to check

tire rods are good and stiff.. no play
wheel berings are good
shocks were replaced
struts were replaced

lower control arms look good

I am really at a loss
 

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When you say there's a rub noise, what does that mean? Is it a grinding noise, a buzzing noise, a squealing noise, or what? Have you looked at the tires to make sure there aren't any spots that look like they may have been contacting something (like the splash shields, for instance) in operation? Does the noise happen all the time while the wheels are turned or just while you're turning them (i.e. when you stop turning the wheel and hold it at an angle, does the noise stop)?
Has the noise over bumps stopped? You may have been dealing with a couple of problems and fixed one of them but not the other.
 

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If the struts are not installed correctly, or if the driver's side spring was swapped with the passenger side, the strut can cause a rubbing noise on turns.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
the noise over the bumps has stopped ...it is not a grind but the best way I can put it is it sounds like a bad drum.. this car has 4 wheel disc .. so that can not be it. I am going to get the struts checked by another mechanic.. I would do it myself but I dont have the right tools
 

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In my case, you could simply stick your hand in the wheelwell and feel the strut assembly touching the inner fenderwell. No tools required, no jacking.
 
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