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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
My 2014 SE 2.0 5-speed hatchback with 117K miles has developed two issues I think may be related:
1. The two-year-old Michelins have always been perfectly smooth up to 90mph. They do not appear to have lost any balance weights and have not hit curbs or potholes. Now I feel a light vibration over 70 mph that seems to be coming from the rear--and is not felt in the steering wheel.

2. There is a light 'rumbling' noise that seems to be coming from the rear that is road speed related--at highway speeds it is quite noticeable, but not so severe as to be able to pinpojnt its origin. (if I played the radio at volume, I'd probably not hear it...but I keep it off) Suspecting a hub bearing, I jacked up and spun each rear wheel. One made no sound at all, but the right side had a soft 'ticking' sound. Neither wheel had any play at all.

What do the great minds think?
 

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You could be right about the bearing. Really, my strategy is just to wait until it's bad enough that it's obvious. Changing the bearing on the wrong side sucks, ask me how I know.

Give all the bushings a good look over too, there's a bunch in the rear.

Sent from my SM-G970U1 using Tapatalk
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I thought about leaving it go to simplify diagnosing, but might have a 2000-mile trip coming up and don't want a failure on the road. I think my first step is to swap front & rear wheels to eliminate balance/tire noise as a problem. It's time to rotate them anyway. I replaced the front hub bearings on another car once for a bearing type noise with no improvement. Then I drove down a dirt road and noticed there was no noise! Close inspection of the not-worn-out tires revealed they had developed minor cupping that created the noise when on pavement. Thanx for your ideas.
 

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2014 Ford Focus SE Hatchback | FWD | 2.0 L Duratec Ti-VCT GDI I4 | DCT Transmission
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My 2014 SE 2.0 5-speed hatchback with 117K miles has developed two issues I think may be related:
1. The two-year-old Michelins have always been perfectly smooth up to 90mph. They do not appear to have lost any balance weights and have not hit curbs or potholes. Now I feel a light vibration over 70 mph that seems to be coming from the rear--and is not felt in the steering wheel.

2. There is a light 'rumbling' noise that seems to be coming from the rear that is road speed related--at highway speeds it is quite noticeable, but not so severe as to be able to pinpojnt its origin. (if I played the radio at volume, I'd probably not hear it...but I keep it off) Suspecting a hub bearing, I jacked up and spun each rear wheel. One made no sound at all, but the right side had a soft 'ticking' sound. Neither wheel had any play at all.

What do the great minds think?
Definitely a wheel bearing. 100%. My front left one is going out and I feel the same thing you feel. I'm getting mine fixed this coming Thursday
 

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My 2014 SE 2.0 5-speed hatchback with 117K miles has developed two issues I think may be related:
1. The two-year-old Michelins have always been perfectly smooth up to 90mph. They do not appear to have lost any balance weights and have not hit curbs or potholes. Now I feel a light vibration over 70 mph that seems to be coming from the rear--and is not felt in the steering wheel.

2. There is a light 'rumbling' noise that seems to be coming from the rear that is road speed related--at highway speeds it is quite noticeable, but not so severe as to be able to pinpojnt its origin. (if I played the radio at volume, I'd probably not hear it...but I keep it off) Suspecting a hub bearing, I jacked up and spun each rear wheel. One made no sound at all, but the right side had a soft 'ticking' sound. Neither wheel had any play at all.

What do the great minds think?
I Wonder could it be a caliper hanging up a bit? Well maybe not because you didn't say anything about it getting too warm back there...maybe shock/spring issue?
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I Wonder could it be a caliper hanging up a bit? Well maybe not because you didn't say anything about it getting too warm back there...maybe shock/spring issue?
Thanks for your thoughts. I often sit at traffic lights out of gear and if there is the slightest grade the car wants to roll, so I'm sure no caliper is dragging. Mystery noise is definitely speed related; haven't felt anything to suggest shocks or springs. Still think it's a rear hub bearing. Went to rotate the wheels and found those damn stainless caps over the lug nuts had gotten battered up by the tire shop's impact gun and I would have never gotten some of them off with the car's lug wrench if I'd had a flat. Needed a breaker bar after hammering a socket onto the nut. I'm waiting for a new set of solid steel nuts to arrive. Glad chasing this noise led me to discover that issue before I was on the side of the road!
 
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