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Discussion Starter #1
Hi,

I just recently got a 2002 Ford Focus SVT with 137k miles on it. The guy I got it from told me that it just needed the passenger side motor mount because it was vibrating pretty bad and would pull left or right when shifting and hitting bumps/dips etc.... So he actually got the passenger side motor mount for me and I replaced it. It made a world of difference with the vibration as the old mount rubber was completely broken. But I noticed that it is still making a clunking noise when I shift gears and it is also pulling when I go around turns or hit bumps/dips. Does anybody have any suggestion as to what I should start checking? Could it simply be out of alignment, if so what would cause the clunking noise when shifting. I also wonder if it could be the CV joints or if possibly the previous owner drove it too long with a bad motor mount that it messed up the other motor mounts. I don't have any money right now to take it to a shop and I'm hoping that it is something simple to fix. Any help or suggestions will be much appreciated.

Thanks,
Jeremy
 

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Here i would start with the suspension, cuz to me it looks like you might have control arm bushings gone, probably all of them.... Which I think that the control arm is moving back and forth that could be the clunking noise.
Does it make noise when the car is parked and you turn the steering wheel? Or only when you drive it?

Is there a lot of clunking consecutive noise? Or just once?

About the motor mounts you can see them easily from the top, only the transmission torgue mount you will have to go underneath the car, but through my experience if one motor mount is bad and wasn't replaced in time all 3 will go bad in very short of time.
 

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ive been battling this clunking popping noise issue for awhile now.just took mine yesterday to a mechanic and said its my shock/struts and tower mounting bearings are bad.mine only made it driving and if it was on jacks i could not duplicate the sound.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
I have only noticed it when I'm driving. The motor mount I put in did take away most of the vibration when sitting still. It seems to make the clunking as soon as I push in the clutch and seems to be just in the lower gears. It also pulls to the left when I push in the clutch or let off of the gas. Or if I take it out of gear and just hit the brakes while in neutral. How would I check the control arm bushing? Just grab the control arm and see if it has any play in it?

Thanks for the help!
 

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The control arm is not that hard to check, lift the car on the jack and take a flashlight and just see if they are broken usually it is pretty easy to see. If still don't see nothing grab the wheel and shake it left an right up and down this way you will be able to see what is not sitting still, at the same time you will be able to the tie rod connections, one of them should come up.
 

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Yeah I will have to put it up and the jack stands sometime soon and just check everything out. I have been told that a good way to check motor mount is to take a pry bar and lift on the engine and see if it gives anywhere. It is driving me crazy so I hope I can get it fixed soon.

Thanks again for the help!
 

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Engine mounts will give you clunk noises over bumps in these cars. The body sorta "kicks" the engine off the perch and when it comes back down to rest it clunks. Only the guy hearing the noise and looking at the car is going to be able to say for certain what the noise is but I dealt with something similar on my car and a RH mount fixed it. As said on here before, it's almost critical to replace all three mounts at the same time. If one fails bad enough it will allow the others to fail as the engine moves. Considering the ease and price and lack of need for a lift - I'd say put the trans mount and bogbone in.
 

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I honestly don't have the money to buy both the transmission mount and the dog bone mount at the same time. Which of the two is more critical or are they equally critical? I will probably buy one soon and the other when I get paid next time.

Thanks again for all the help guys!

Also, I have noticed that I am not getting email notifications when someone replies to this thread. I have it set at the bottom to get instant emails. Is there something else I need to do?
 

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Suspension needs a THOROUGH check over, if it pulls noticeably when getting on & off the gas ball joints, control arm bushings, tie rod ends ALL need to be checked...

I'd worry about that first, since keeping the front end together & having the car go where you want it to is a LOT more important than engine vibrations.... (grin)

Luck!
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Suspension needs a THOROUGH check over, if it pulls noticeably when getting on & off the gas ball joints, control arm bushings, tie rod ends ALL need to be checked...

I'd worry about that first, since keeping the front end together & having the car go where you want it to is a LOT more important than engine vibrations.... (grin)

Luck!
So are you saying that the pulling couldn't be caused by bad engine/transmission mounts? I was thinking that maybe the play in the engine/transmission could be causing the pulling but I could be wrong. I have done quite a bit of work on cars but I have never messes with steering/suspension before so I don't know a lot about it. How would I go about checking ball joints, control arm bushings, and tie rod ends? Would I basically just make sure there is not play in any of them?

Thanks for the help!
 

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I also wanted to mention that I noticed yesterday that with my wife in the passenger seat the car didn't pull much at all. It still made the clunking noise when I was shifting but very little pulling. Does that mean anything to anybody or help narrow down what the problem could be?

Thanks!
 

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Clunking when shifting is likely to be the lower motor mount, also known as the dogbone mount. For an SVT, the polyurethane replacement is recommended. Before replacing it, you should inspect the mount and the bracket that the mount fits on. If the bracket is too old or cracked, then you'll have to get the Motorcraft part because it comes with the bracket as well as the mount.

Since you're pulling when going over bumps, there are some important things to check. You should inspect the tie rod ends as mentioned above. Crank the wheel to one side, then go to the opposite side and grab the tie rod end. See if you can move it easily side to side. If it feels loose, then it's bad. You might also notice a clunk from it if an assistant cranks the wheel back the other way.

Of course, if your alignment is out, then your car will turn very easily with dips, so an alignment is crucial. I suggest calling around and finding a place that will do lifetime alignments. That saves a lot of money when you swap suspension parts DIY. Even when installing new struts, you should have an alignment done.
 

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Alright, I checked the tie rods tonight and they were very solid I couldn't move them. I did happen to check the CV joints while I was at it and they both had some play in them. Is that normal? Also, I noticed something tied to the lower strut mount like thick gauge wire...Not sure what that would be used for unless someone used it to take up space in the mount if it was loose....I also noticed that my passenger side front tire seems to be worn more than the other 3 and it seems to be worn on the inside more than the outside.

I will have to take it to my father-in-laws garage and get it up on jack stands to get under it.

I do have a couple questions if anybody is up for answering.

1. Could a bad motor mount alone make the car pull when turning sharp, shifting, or hitting bumps or dips?

2. Would my wife being in the passenger seat help the pulling if it were the motor mounts or something else? (when my wife rode with me it didn't pull....only made the clunking noise when shifting in the lower gears...)

3. Can a car out of alignment go straight (not pull) under normal driving conditions and only pull with speed changes, shifting, sharp curves, or bumps/dips?
 

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I do have a couple questions if anybody is up for answering.

1. Could a bad motor mount alone make the car pull when turning sharp, shifting, or hitting bumps or dips?

2. Would my wife being in the passenger seat help the pulling if it were the motor mounts or something else? (when my wife rode with me it didn't pull....only made the clunking noise when shifting in the lower gears...)

3. Can a car out of alignment go straight (not pull) under normal driving conditions and only pull with speed changes, shifting, sharp curves, or bumps/dips?

Just wanted to check back and see if anybody knows the answers to my questions above.

Thanks!
 
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