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Discussion Starter #1
Hoping to get some help/advice here as to how to work out what this is...please excuse the length of it---just hoping to give u guys as much info as possible...

I've been noticing what I can best describe as a clunk/snap which seems to me to be coming from near the back of the car. The sound is heard without fail while backing out when I stop transiently (it seems to occur most when the brakes are applied and there is a shift in forward/backward motion) and randomly at other times when the brakes are applied.

There is also a similar sound (I'm still unsure if its a different noise) heard if I carry enough speed and lean into a right turn---the sound appears to arise from the left rear (almost as if a spring is slipping).

There is no difference that I can notice so far in steering/handling/braking and no noise over bumps. I did think that the steering may be wandering a bit at freeway speeds (making me suspect tierods----but this may be paranoia).

Of note---I recently had the parking brake cable tightened--I'e been noticing the issue more after this--but again may be paranoia.
No accidents on the car which is stock except for EAP wheels. Rotors/Pads were changed at 31K miles---car now has 43K


I've taken the car now to 2 mechanics:
1)Ford dealer and supposedly the most reputable in the area---says brakes are great (they were the ones who tightened the cable) but the left front strut is slipping from its mounting and will need both struts replaced ($700 estimate) [nutkick]. They suggest not doing anything if not a problem---To me they seemed to be guessing--and suggesting a broad fix which they hope may solve the issue--so took it to..

2)Independant shop---supposedly the best in the PDX area--and told them this history (and what the ford dealer said)--their result--- Suspension and steering tight(no issues) Report rt front brake pad is loose--and causing the sound---suggest changing both front pads (and calipers if needed )if there are a lot of miles on the brakes else leave alone.

Now I'm completely confused by this[???:)] as the 2 have opposing diagnoses---and I would bet they are both partly/mostly guessing---what do u guys suggest? leave alone till something breaks? I would have loved to follow some of the threads on here and try and diagnose it myself---but I have neither the space nor the tools[:(]
 

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Discussion Starter #2
I'm beginning to get pretty sure this is actually from the rt front brake pad/caliper. Any opinions if this by itself merits a change--pads have lotsa life left.
The sound from the back I'm less certain about.. sway bar?
 

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sounds like sway bar bushings or links to me
 

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I've taken the car now to 2 mechanics:
1)Ford dealer and supposedly the most reputable in the area---says brakes are great (they were the ones who tightened the cable) but the left front strut is slipping from its mounting and will need both struts replaced ($700 estimate)...
Hi jinxster,

Well, that must be confusing to get opposing opinions! The Ford-trained technicians know your vehicle inside and out, but since you aren't quite confident in their diagnosis, you may want to consider getting another opinion at a different Ford dealer. You might also want to speak to the Service Manager for assistance. Please let me know if I can be of any help!

~Natasha
 

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Discussion Starter #5
YA thanks Natasha--I might do that--the issue is--at most places---they charge even to diagnose---and ST parts esp suspension are special order at most dealers---I'm fine replacing parts and paying the requisite--if that is definitely the problem.
I wish I had somewhere I could just put the car up on a lift myself--and look thru what I feel might be the issue---
 

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Discussion Starter #6
sounds like sway bar bushings or links to me
From what I can gather the best way to look for an end link issue is to jack up the wheel and check the play...what's the best way to check for sway bar bushings?
 

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From what I can gather the best way to look for an end link issue is to jack up the wheel and check the play...what's the best way to check for sway bar bushings?
To check the sway bar end link. You need to remove it. This way there is no tension on It. This way you can see how loose the ends are. The brake pads being loose, isn't there a pad holder. ? Also there was a recent post. A guy actually had the wrong rotors. They were loose even with the lugs tight. See if everything will get tight with out the wheel on. Just tighten the lugs on the rotors. Not to tight just snug.
 

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I'm getting a similar noise and I have since put a used junk yard strut on the right side, inner tierod r side, sway bar end link r side, rotor r side, did not yet check sway bar bushings but I think I need a NEW store bought strut instead of salvage yard part and I hope this fixes it! If not the only other thing is to put a whole cv shaft and basically have replaced the whole right front suspension.
 

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If you don't have standard hand tools- ratchet, socket, screwdrivers, etc. We can't really advise you how to diagnose it. We're just guessing, and we can't even drive the car or look at it, so our guesses would be even more wild.

As far as Roofers problem: struts aren't something I'd get from a junkyard. If you want to replace everything, you should look online for loaded struts. These are super simple to replace, and a deal because you get all the parts you might be missing like the protective boot and strut mount. You don't even have to get a spring compressor because a new spring is mounted on there. I looked for loaded Foci struts online once, and IIRC, the price was $120ish.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
If you don't have standard hand tools- ratchet, socket, screwdrivers, etc. We can't really advise you how to diagnose it. We're just guessing, and we can't even drive the car or look at it, so our guesses would be even more wild.
Fair point--was just looking for some guesses---Anyway--am personally pretty convinced that it is the brakes and likely the rt front brake pad/caliper. Do they need to be changed if just loose--braking has not been affected.
 
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