We are quite certain there isn’t any driver out there who hasn’t experienced at a certain point in time, that their car making weird noises.
Regardless of whether it is a knock, rattle, screech, whistle, or a hissing sound, it’s enough to send the drivers to a state of worry, questioning whether their car will be OK. If the noise does not result in a catastrophic failure, most people choose to ignore it, particularly if the noise is intermittent; with the noise not present for days before again resurfacing, much to the annoyance of the owner. It is worth remembering that strange and weird noises from your car are a sign of trouble ahead. Strange noise is one of the ways in which a car communicates a flaw or defect to its owner.
There are different types of noises. Some among them signal serious issues while others, comparatively minor ones. Here, we will try to highlight the noises that commonly occur during the life of a vehicle. Let’s have a look at some of most common noises made by cars and try to pinpoint the root cause of the defect or issue.
Screeching or Squealing when Brakes are Applied
This is a sign of worn-out brake hardware. There are also a few vehicle manufacturers who build a brake wear indication system. This wear indicator provides a visual signal on the dashboard of the vehicle indicating that the brake pads need be replaced. Installation of new brake pads and replacing or resurfacing the brake rotors will help to minimize the noise during braking and of course, provide efficient and safe braking for your vehicle in emergencies.
Grinding while Braking
If you hear grinding sounds while applying pressure to the brake pedal, it indicates that the pads are worn and the metal backing of the pads is making direct contact with the brake rotors. In hearing this grinding noise it is highly likely that the brake pads have worn way beyond their wear limit. It may also indicate a more serious issue with the brake calipers grinding against the rotors. When a grinding noise first starts it is only a short time before the rotors will need replacing due to the scoring of the rotor faces. If you wait and ignore the grinding sound, you are inviting trouble for yourself and additional expense.
Rhythmic Ticking Sound when the Engine is Idle
Shut off the engine; wait for around ten minutes or so to allow the engine to cool down. Check whether you have an adequate level of engine oil. In the event that you don’t have adequate oil in your engine, you can ask your mechanic to check the exhaust and intake valve clearances and make adjustments to reduce the noise.
Whistling Sound Coming From Under the Bonnet
In cases where there is a whistling or hissing sound coming from the vehicle, it is likely the vehicle has a leak. Check out the cooling system hoses and the cylinder head gasket for signs of leakage. It may be worth performing a cylinder compression test to make sure your engine is holding its compression to OEM recommended values.
Offbeat Rhythm when the Engine Idles
You can turn off the engine and try the following in such a case.
- Check spark plug cables for shorts or breaks in the wiring
- Check out whether the spark plugs are clean and gapped properly. Replace the ones that are burned.
- Check the air filter is not blocked and causing over fuelling of the engine
If attending to the spark plugs does not address a lumpy engine then you may need to check the ignition system to ensure the spark plugs are being fed with high voltage power when required.
Squealing or Chirping Sound under the Bonnet
The drive belt of the car is a single belt transferring power produced by the engine’s crank to accessories like power steering, alternator, and the air conditioning. The belt may wear out with the passage of time, causing a squealing sound. It may make more noise when you start the car or rev it up. Turning on the air conditioning may also make the chirping or squealing noise more intense. Change the drive belt. This is an easy but inexpensive repair. Avoiding drive belt repair can lead to bigger issues. If ignored, the belt may break. The potential loss of engine cooling is one of the most significant reasons for needing to replace the drive belt at the earliest opportunity.
Now let’s have a look at some concerning sounds.
- Noise while turning a corner
- Clunking while braking
- Sizzling or hissing under the hood
- Loud bang
- Knocking from the engine compartment
- Popping from the engine compartment
- Low pitch humming under the car
- Rattles beneath the vehicle
- Chirping or squealing on acceleration
- Roaring that increases with acceleration
- Grinding while brakes are applied
- Clicking or tapping from the engine compartment
Depending upon the car you drive, the noises referenced here may indicate different flaws. Also, the way to address the faults will vary from one vehicle model to another. You may also fail to detect the reason for the noise if you are not appropriately trained. It’s preferable to take the car to a mechanic in cases where it isn’t obvious what is causing the noise and this approach should ensure a satisfactory outcome in diagnosing the flaw or defect with your vehicle.
**This information is shared by Premier Plates UK
Tim is a car enthusiast, he is a die heart fan of motorsport and also loves to write articles on automotive, cars, and bikes.
Currently, he is writing articles on Personalised Number Plates