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Old 11-18-2012, 07:33 PM   #1
04ZTSJelf
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Front right popping/crunching.

Hey fellow focus enthusiasts! I wanted to know if anyone has experieced this problem or knows what it could be. Any help would be appreciated. I bought my car back in june, and when I did, it made a popping-like noise in the front right side when I turned all the way in either direction (which was only sometimes to park, and not often). I took it to a trusted shop for a general tune-up and brakes shortly after, and when they got it on the lift, they noticed that one of the sway bars was completely off, and another was off on one end, so I had to get those replaced too. Luckily they didn't charge me anything for labor on those because they aid it was a quick fix. I asked about the popping and they said everything looked good, so they didn't know what it was. But recently, the popping is more frequent and it now makes a noise like somethings loose when I go over a bump or dip with the right front at low speeds (25mph through my neighborhood is when it happens mostly) and I think it has thrown my alignment outta wack because over the past week it has begun to pull right slightly. Its easily drivable, but just wanted to know if this is something simple, as I would love to start giving my car more performance but this seems more important.
Thanks for any help!
Also, if its important, I drive an 04 sedan with the 2.3.


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Old 11-18-2012, 08:50 PM   #2
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I'm assuming is was missing sway bar links not the actual sway bar. Your best bet is to jack up the front right tire and kinda grab onto stuff and see if anything moves. Not sure what the popping sound is but if your trying to track down a loose part just grab it and shake it around a little and see if it moves.
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Old 11-18-2012, 11:02 PM   #3
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The most common problem creating a popping noise when in a turn or turning the wheel hard is worn ball Joints.
Worn ball joints is serious, because they can break off without warning and that will leave your front wheel sidways.. Even if you are moving at 60mph
So it matters to ask if that is the issue.
the car needs to be put up on a lift and the motion checked. It may take some hard pushing to 'knock' the worn ball over. Or it may be easy. All depends HOW it is worn. Someone who understand the ball joint should look at them
Usually the noise is a sudden loud 'clunk' especially at parking manuver speeds.
If you have that.. Then i say get it checked out.
In other posts I have said ignore stuff because it can wait.
A really worn ball joint should NOT wait. It is unsafe to drive. It does NOT need to be towed, but realize the wheel falling off is not good.
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Old 12-06-2012, 03:14 PM   #4
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Didn't want to start another thread on this while this one was already here.

Well.... my car just got an oil change and I asked them to check out the noise in the front. I wasn't there to talk to the guy who checked it out but he said (on the phone) he looked at everything and it was good, but he heard the noise and it could be a 'strut tire'. Thats what I heard over the phone, but I assumed he meant 'strut tower'. He said to know for sure they would have to take it apart and look and the part, and if thats what it is, it is somewhere between $30-$40 + labor.

So umm.... anyone have an opinion on that? I wasn't taught anything about cars growing up so I'm trying to learn... sorry if it seems like i'm an idiot.
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Old 12-06-2012, 09:02 PM   #5
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^your car is almost 9 years old; how many miles on those struts?

If they're original, then there's not much use throwing good money at them now, just to replace them in a year or two. Consider asking the mechanic to replace them with a new strut + spring assembly (Monroe QuickStrut is $150/ea or less). His labor charge will actually be less to replace the strut with a new one than to repair the old one, and you'll save money in the long run.
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Old 12-06-2012, 10:42 PM   #6
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I already have FR Dynamic struts just sitting here... I was just waiting to get shocks and lowering springs to do it all at once, but that could be a while.
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Old 12-06-2012, 11:17 PM   #7
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im thinking it would be the strut mounts/bearings.
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Old 12-07-2012, 12:53 PM   #8
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Try and tighten the top strut mount nut. It's possible the bushing is so compressed it's allowing a little play or it's backed off an RCH over time.

You'll need to put a wrench on the big nut and then a little on top to keep it from spinning the top, see if you can tighten it a half or a full turn.
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