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Old 06-27-2012, 11:57 AM   #601
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Given that the noise (temporarily) disappears for some after getting suspension parts replaced, makes me believe that whatever the cause, it is definitely isolated to the suspension.

Since the Volvo C30 and Mazda3 are basically kissing cousins to our Foci, platform-wise, I've spent some time searching around the respective forums for those cars. While they use the same exact strut bearing and mount, I have noticed that there is no rubber spring isolator in the spring bucket for those cars. While I don't think it's directly to blame, I do believe it contributes to the issue, since it does give the spring room to vibrate. Perhaps this isolator isn't damping the spring vibrations properly, and the vibration is traveling through the spring to the strut mounts and bearings... causing the clunking we are hearing. This lack of vibration damping could be causing premature bearing failure in some cars, which is why the noise disappears when the bearings, springs, and struts are collectively replaced.

Lipshurt, you said that your noise occurs on sudden drops, such as a recessed manhole cover, or perhaps cracks in the pavement. I have the same exact characteristic. However, mine actually gets better with colder weather. It gets worse the higher the ambient temperature is. This would correlate with the spring isolator not doing it's job properly, as rubber stiffens up considerably in colder temperatures.

Again, this is merely a hypothesis. But it's definitely something worth considering.

If I had the time, and if the front suspension wasn't such a female dog to work on, I'd test this hypothesis out myself by removing the spring isolator and recording my results.
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Old 06-27-2012, 12:02 PM   #602
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sonic_HedgeHog View Post
From everything I've read and from where the noise is emanating, my vote is for the bearing/top hat assembly. And if all they're doing is replacing a faulty part with the same non-redesigned part I don't see this "fixing" anything unless it's an indexing/alignment issue at install and maybe the machine was just off in the factory.
That's why I'm curious as to whether ricomtl's clunk comes back. If it does, I would imagine that there will be a change to the parts list in the near future...
The reason I bring up misalignment, though a longer shot than weak parts, is that it could be causing premature failure to the bearing/race assembly. Or maybe the bearings are not the size that they should be...or a torque issue...
Many, many variables

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lipshurt View Post
1) the sound is a rattle, or sometimes when it's a clunk, it's really just the first part of a rattle or a very very short rattle. That means that two things are touching each other that should NOT be touching. Not something that needs to be tightened.
I admire your thought process and attempts to rule out components, but I can assure you that my clunk (and I'm sure others on here as well) is indeed suspension related. I can (and unfortunately do) replicate it every single day by pulling into my driveway. I have stood next to the car while my gf drives it and can tell without a doubt that it is on the right hand side near my wheel. This can also incorporate steering components, but that system falls under suspension as well. Coupled with the condition that my strut top cap assembly came apart when changing my springs, it leads me to believe that (at the most) the problem in my car resides between the strut bump-stop and the upper strut mount on my car.

If you are hearing a rattle, you may not be having the same issue as those of us on this thread, idk
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Old 06-27-2012, 12:06 PM   #603
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Old 06-27-2012, 12:33 PM   #604
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Zillon View Post
Given that the noise (temporarily) disappears for some after getting suspension parts replaced, makes me believe that whatever the cause, it is definitely isolated to the suspension.

Since the Volvo C30 and Mazda3 are basically kissing cousins to our Foci, platform-wise, I've spent some time searching around the respective forums for those cars. While they use the same exact strut bearing and mount, I have noticed that there is no rubber spring isolator in the spring bucket for those cars. While I don't think it's directly to blame, I do believe it contributes to the issue, since it does give the spring room to vibrate. Perhaps this isolator isn't damping the spring vibrations properly, and the vibration is traveling through the spring to the strut mounts and bearings... causing the clunking we are hearing. This lack of vibration damping could be causing premature bearing failure in some cars, which is why the noise disappears when the bearings, springs, and struts are collectively replaced.

Lipshurt, you said that your noise occurs on sudden drops, such as a recessed manhole cover, or perhaps cracks in the pavement. I have the same exact characteristic. However, mine actually gets better with colder weather. It gets worse the higher the ambient temperature is. This would correlate with the spring isolator not doing it's job properly, as rubber stiffens up considerably in colder temperatures.

Again, this is merely a hypothesis. But it's definitely something worth considering.

If I had the time, and if the front suspension wasn't such a female dog to work on, I'd test this hypothesis out myself by removing the spring isolator and recording my results.
Your symptoms mirror my symptoms to the "T" including the temperature having an affect.
Most rubber components have excellent thermal properties so I dont know if the isolator is the cause. I am convinced that it is suspension related as the problems seem to be corrected albeit temporarily for some that have had the parts replaced.
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Old 06-27-2012, 03:19 PM   #605
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3 weeks now and still no noise has returned after my fix. I'm hoping and praying it doesn't!
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Old 06-27-2012, 03:40 PM   #606
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Hello everyone -

I'm in the process of compiling information for all who are still experiencing issues after having the 12B37 Customer Satisfaction Program completed. The program I mentioned specifically deals with transmission and hill-start quality.

After viewing this thread, I'll also include information concerning the clunking/rattling of the suspension in the 2012 Focus. If you're still experiencing these issues after visiting your dealer, please send me a short PM with your VIN and a brief description.

After I have all of the details properly documented, I plan to forward both issues to our engineering rep.

Hope to hear from you all soon,

Thomas
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Old 06-27-2012, 04:07 PM   #607
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Hello everyone -

I'm in the process of compiling information for all who are still experiencing issues after having the 12B37 Customer Satisfaction Program completed. The program I mentioned specifically deals with transmission and hill-start quality.

After viewing this thread, I'll also include information concerning the clunking/rattling of the suspension in the 2012 Focus. If you're still experiencing these issues after visiting your dealer, please send me a short PM with your VIN and a brief description.

After I have all of the details properly documented, I plan to forward both issues to our engineering rep.

Hope to hear from you all soon,

Thomas
PM sent
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Old 06-27-2012, 04:31 PM   #608
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Zillion....
That rubber isolator is under a lot of tension already. It would be hard for it to move much. And it seems t would move more under more stress, and be less likely to move Nader low stress of small bumps and slow speed.

Several things have seemingly made my noise disappear for a while, like getting the tires rotated, getting a new wheel, having that fender replaced, all made the nose stop for a certain length of time.....or so it seemed.

I just had a Mazda tech come over and we talked about it for a whole.
His take was, it's not suspension, and most likely plastic moving against metal. He also said that the techs have zero to gain from working on it. He said he has spent whole days riding around in trunks, putting on microphones, etc, only to never find a rattle or clunk, and also make NO money doing it.

He also said that the strut bearing is the least likely thing to give a slow speed sound. Those things are tight. He described the conditions of strut bearing failure and it's nothing lke a slow speed sound that happens over small bumps.

He said the thing that is the biggest clue is that I can make the sons happen by stress the trans and/or suddenly de-stressing the trans. He said the thing to do is put it on a lift, and hold the brakes and rev it while someone is under the car and watching what moves. He said it might take two people in the car one to hold the brake, or maybe hold the brake down with a piece of wood or bar.

He put his money on heat shielding hat is moving into contact or is in contact with something it should not be contact with.

He also said that ford will eventually get it figured out, and that when the district service rep gets involved things should start to happen pretty fast. The dealer and the dealer techs simply have very little to gain money wise by working on something like that. It's just the way the money is set up. They gain by replacing parts and charging standard labor costs, and that is why hey will throw money at it by replacing expensive parts like struts before they get under there and ride around with one tech driving and the other with his ear pressed to the floor, and mounting mics and moving them bit by bit. That can cake 100 tries and actually take days, and sometimes you can't even mount a mic in the spot where it would show exactly where the sound is. Basically they hate finding sounds and you cant really blame them I guess. I have another friend with a shop and he might be into finding it, but I would have to pay him something.

I would rather let the engineers a ford get it figured out. That will jus take time. For now, I just turn the fan up one more notch and it drowns out the sound pretty good.
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Old 06-27-2012, 06:33 PM   #609
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lipshurt View Post
Zillion....
That rubber isolator is under a lot of tension already. It would be hard for it to move much. And it seems t would move more under more stress, and be less likely to move Nader low stress of small bumps and slow speed.

Several things have seemingly made my noise disappear for a while, like getting the tires rotated, getting a new wheel, having that fender replaced, all made the nose stop for a certain length of time.....or so it seemed.

I just had a Mazda tech come over and we talked about it for a whole.
His take was, it's not suspension, and most likely plastic moving against metal. He also said that the techs have zero to gain from working on it. He said he has spent whole days riding around in trunks, putting on microphones, etc, only to never find a rattle or clunk, and also make NO money doing it.

He also said that the strut bearing is the least likely thing to give a slow speed sound. Those things are tight. He described the conditions of strut bearing failure and it's nothing lke a slow speed sound that happens over small bumps.

He said the thing that is the biggest clue is that I can make the sons happen by stress the trans and/or suddenly de-stressing the trans. He said the thing to do is put it on a lift, and hold the brakes and rev it while someone is under the car and watching what moves. He said it might take two people in the car one to hold the brake, or maybe hold the brake down with a piece of wood or bar.

He put his money on heat shielding hat is moving into contact or is in contact with something it should not be contact with.

He also said that ford will eventually get it figured out, and that when the district service rep gets involved things should start to happen pretty fast. The dealer and the dealer techs simply have very little to gain money wise by working on something like that. It's just the way the money is set up. They gain by replacing parts and charging standard labor costs, and that is why hey will throw money at it by replacing expensive parts like struts before they get under there and ride around with one tech driving and the other with his ear pressed to the floor, and mounting mics and moving them bit by bit. That can cake 100 tries and actually take days, and sometimes you can't even mount a mic in the spot where it would show exactly where the sound is. Basically they hate finding sounds and you cant really blame them I guess. I have another friend with a shop and he might be into finding it, but I would have to pay him something.

I would rather let the engineers a ford get it figured out. That will jus take time. For now, I just turn the fan up one more notch and it drowns out the sound pretty good.
Your friend needs to find a new line of work. Everyone has their niche. He has yet to find his.
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Old 06-27-2012, 06:49 PM   #610
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Your friend needs to find a new line of work. Everyone has their niche. He has yet to find his.
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