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Hey guys, I have an interesting noise problem. When I start to accelerate, I hear kind of a grinding noise, it's hard to describe, almost like a vibration noise, but I do not feel any vibrations. The harder I accelerate the louder the sound gets, but when I am just cruising along it dissappears. Anybody have any ideas? I found a loose heat shield, but fixed that and no change.
 

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hey there soup flakes I just got the same problem, I am taking my car in today and I will let you know what they find. Mine is a little bit different in that it starts at about 5 mph and doesn't change much when I accelerate. I have tried putting on the brakes front and back, tried putting it in neutral and shutting it off and still there. I took the wheels of and tried spinning the axle by hand. What I found was the both whell have to be spinning at the same time to make the noise, which leads me to believe that it is in the transmission. I had a throwout bearing go out once in my truck and it sounding just like this. Like a tightly pressed metal on metal sound.
 

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completely normal unless its extremely loud. the gears in our trannsmissions fit together kinda loose so at low rpms and low speeds you can hear them chatter a little bit. i wouldnt worry about it unless it just started making the noise louder than normal then i would get it checked out.
 

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For 60k miles it hasn't been normal, now all of a sudden it is normal! I think I will be getting my normal situation taken care of before I need more than just a normal transmission overhaul. No disrespect but grinding is grinding and that creates metal shavings which are bad!
 

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dump the trans fluid and see if there is any metal shavings.
 

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well you can do what you want but ive owned 3 foci and put more than 170k miles on my 2000zx3 and its still on original stock tranny. 2 zx3 and 1 svt and ridden in several besides mine and every single one of them have made the same chattering noise. also i would think that if youve been hearing this for 60k miles and are just now starting to worry about it something else has changed to make you worry. if you are convinced there is something wrong with the tranny then do what ken6x6 says and dump the tranny fluid and check for shavings. you would probably find shavings anyway with a high mileage car that more than likely has only once, if ever, had the tranny fluid changed. just a little bit of shavings in there with 50k mile old tranny fluid is ok. lots and lots is bad. but without more information on what it sounds like EXACTLY or where EXACTLY the sound is coming from and if you can FEEL any difference in the way the car drives that is the best advice i can tell you without examining the car in person.
 

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soupflakes, I just got my car back, running great now with NO noise, the carrier bearing on the passenger side was bad, not sure what caused it but, my guess would be the prevous owner didn't seem to think that alignment was a big concern! I agree with focusmaniaczx3, if you drive like a normal person the tranny should last almost forever, but I feel your issue is beyond the tranny. If you are a do-it yourselfer get a stethoscope and listin to each component as someone turns the wheels by hand you will be able to tell if it is in the bearings or the tranny, or try a dowel rod if you don't have a stethoscope.

http://www.focusfanatics.com/forum/showthread.php?t=188934
 

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I just hit the 100k mark and started hearing a similar noise. It is a grinding noise that only happens in gear, any gear between 2k and 4k rpm. I am now starting to hear it while driving on the freeway as well. It does not happen in neutral only while moving. I drive 60miles one way and when I get to work it does not happen. Seems to only happen when cold during short trips.
I replaced the passenger side axle shaft thinking it was the same carrier or jack shaft bearing. No change, I also had clicking while turning, but all cv boots are fine.

I also need a new strut up front they are on order.

It is a 2003 zx3 with the 2.3 5 spd manual.

The transmission fluid that leaked out looked fine no metal.

Any more thoughts or suggestions on this one?
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Thanks guys, I got the tranny fluid changed, but no difference, the next thing will be the bearing. I will look at it closer, I've put over 15,000 miles on it since I bought it and it still hasn't changed, so it is probably not doing anything horrible, though I do autocross this car, so I'm going to try to get it fixed. Thanks for all the help. Any other ideas are welcome. i'll look at the bearing and see what happens.
 

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Before you spend too much $$$ check your motor mounts. I just did mine for a similar sound. The Passenger side mount was the offender. When you check them, be very particular. The mount that was bad on mine looked fine, but the viscus fluid leaked out somewhere along the line.
I will say that the focus motor mounts are about the easiest I've ever replaced... Took 45 mins for all 3.
 

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i have a 2004 zx3 with just over 100k i had the same grinding noise and i replaced the cv joints on both sides ($210 on ebay for both sides) and it cleared the grinding right up the teeth and the knuckle on the cv joints were worn out... gave the car a new drive feel like i just bought it new off the lot everyhting tightend up... shifts acceleration responce... it really fixed alot
 

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Dudes, HELP!
My ZTW makes a horrible grinding noise only when turning right and only in the morning, it goes away completely (or so i hear) after 10-15 minutes of driving (not idling) and it seems to be noisier when accelerating in a right turn than when coasting in a right turn.
When i make left turns it's like new.
(maybe unrelated) I have replaced the tires about 6 months ago and (it seems) that they were unable to balance them (they actually showed me that it passes the roadforce balancer test so it was fine from their point of view) but when going over 95km/h my seats shake and my steering wheel moves left and right slightly but it seems more up and down also. Soon after that i remember making a quick 3 point turn and i heard a knock, not immediately but few days after i got the "right turn grind" problem.

help-p-puh
 

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could be a CV joint going out. need a better description of the sound in question and specifically where its coming from and need to know any and all situations that make it happen. can you do it at a stop when turning the wheel from lock to lock, can you get the front tires off the ground and spin the wheels while someone turns the wheel and make it happen?
 

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The passenger side motor mount is a possibility. If the fliud leaks out, the mount will still hold the engine securely, but it seems to pass thru every engine and drive line vibration- and there are many. You think you're driving a completely clapped-out NYC taxi.

It's easy to check- let the engine idle and listen carefully. Then grab the motor at the passenger side top and pull or push on the motor front, back, and down. If you hear any change in the sound (and listen carefully, it might be subtle), probably that mount is bad.
 

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1) definitely right sided noise (passenger)
2) very noticeable when car was not used for a while (overnight)
3) noisy even in slight acceleration in RIGHT turns
4) NEW info: sounds like grinding but not constant, i could define it like a slipping gear (rrr...rrrrrr..r...rrrrrrr..rr..rrrr) noise [confused]
5) imagine a road that winds up and down slightly, when the suspension goes to the lower point, i hear the same noise even when NOT making a right turn or even when i'm NOT accelerating.
6) when accelerating on a perfect straight road, it still sounds like a grinding slipping gear noise (only "in the morning") that seems to catch randomly.
7)there is some tie rod noise present at low speed on uneven roads..
8)noise SEEMS NOT to be present in reverse with the wheels pointed to the right (did not try the other way yet [:I] )
9) at highway speed i have up and down vibration of the car (annoying) and steering wheel shake (similar to wheel imbalance) -- this started to be much more visible after getting new tires (NEXEN CP641 http://www.nexentireusa.com/tires-6/CP641 )
10) i feel like this problem has a stupidly simple solution but i'm broke now so i'm avoiding the huge suspension troubleshooting costs. help.
 

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Did you check the passenger motor mount as I suggested? Everything you've listed above is consistant with that except the steering wheel shake. Since that got worse with new tires it may in fact be due to the new tires.

It takes 30 seconds to check it and costs nothing- there's a good chance that's all it is.
 

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Hey Guys I solved it

I had this exact problem with the right side grinding.... We changed the CV joint with no luck and then it dawned on us that we could have atleast checked the motor mount!!!

When we did we found this..... Change your motor mount and the noise will go away.
 

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1) so what exactly shoud i do to confirm that it's the motor mount?
2) is this a DIY project ?
3) what are the benefits/counterbenefits of after-market mounts
4) is it a good idea to replace all motor mounts at the same time? (easier, cheaper labor?)
5) an @$$#013 keyed my car tonight in a parkade (all-around with 2 keys!) i am furious, my deductible is upwards of $500 i think, it seems to be a trend around here (in march this year in a cinema parking lot they did 300 cars in 2 hours), kids nowadays need a hobby and some role-models
 

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@ OP: I've got the same sound. It only happens when accelerating between 1500 and 3500 RPM's and I'm pretty sure it's just heat shield rattle. I'm sure that's probably your problem as well.

I asked about it a while back and that was the general consensus. It's never caused any mechanical problems so screw it.
 
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