Rear axle noise from lowered suspension?

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  1. #1
    CelicaSupra.com Member Don L.'s Avatar
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    Rear axle noise from lowered suspension?

    Well, I haven't posed a off the wall question in a bit of time. Been getting some clunking noises from the rear, low speed, often when turning. Feels a bit like drivetrain getting locked up or twisting? So I started searching for info on the wonderful internet, and found that some trucks make a somewhat similar sound from the slip yoke not being able to slide in and out of the tranny smoothly. Then I wondered about my rear half shafts, maybe at the lowered stance of my car, the CV joints are complaining? I figured others have lower cars than mine, those rear axles are angled a bit upward (from diff to wheel hub), thought maybe they need to be rebuilt. My rear axles have never been serviced, about 188k miles now.

    Oh yeah, single aluminum driveshaft, r154 tranny, trutrac LSD presently.

    Anyway, the noises bother me, and I always (now) worry about stuff breaking when I get on the power (1jz).

    Any thoughts, much appreciated!

    Don L.

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  3. #2
    CelicaSupra.com Member
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    Can't say if it is, or isn't, the issue but at 188K miles, and your level of power, my guess is the rear axles should be changed. Although I would expect there to be a relatively similar clunk from rear axles when "leaving the line".
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  4. #3
    CelicaSupra.com Member gamble's Avatar
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    I'm with him, back that thing up on some ramps and give everything a yank. Maybe the input of your diff is funky? Big power guys upgrade those, word on the street is the mk2 size is not quite big enough? I could be way off base as i'm going off my forum whoring, regardless solid yanking on everything while on ramps should find if you have anything loose.

  5. #4
    CelicaSupra.com Member Don L.'s Avatar
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    Thanks guys, I really need to do some diagnosing. Thing is, when the car is up on ramps, yanking on parts usually shows things are tight, but perhaps because they have some tension. I can only eliminate the LSD and housing because the noises seem consistent despite swapping diffs.

    Mostly low speed, take off, moving around parking lots. It actually feels to me like a locker rear end and the two rear wheels are fighting each other. Have a truetrac in there now, and it should be the smoothest unit available in my garage. No locker action at parking lot speeds.

    Right now thinking driveshaft spline into tranny, rear half shafts, the 2 subframe mounts above the diff.

    I really need the car to be smoother. The car is powerful, suspension is stiff, but the knocking and rattle noises bother my focus and enjoyment of the car.

    I see those clearance prices of 2014 Focus ST models for $20k and sometimes it's tempting!

    Don

  6. #5
    Boosting Mod SilverMk2's Avatar
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    You might take the axle bolts off and inspect the cages. Those that have broken axles its usually that part that fails. If its when turning I would put my money on axles or rear diff.

    It could also be your rear driveshaft u-joint the small Mk2 joints aren't that strong. But you'll usually get that when only when speeding up and slowing down.

    BTW The seating position is terrible in the Focus. It feels like you're sitting in a minivan. It has nice seats though.

  7. #6
    CelicaSupra.com Member Don L.'s Avatar
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    The aluminum driveshaft has upgraded u-joints, and pinion flange is upgraded to a Toyota truck size (or Mk3, not sure now). The axles, well, they are kinda old and been beaten to death. I guess there are rebuild kits for the CV boots ?

  8. #7
    Boosting Mod SilverMk2's Avatar
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    You can buy rebuild kits or Cardone axles already done for about $75.

  9. #8
    CelicaSupra.com Member ddd228's Avatar
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    When you lowered the car,the axel shafts angles changed.The CV joints may be popping in and out of their usual wear area . The joints "wore in" at the former angle and now the joints are at a slightly different angle. The CV balls may be rolling into and out of the old wear area. I didn't price-out a pair of rebuilt axel shafts for you.
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  10. #9
    CelicaSupra.com Member ddd228's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SilverMk2 View Post
    You can buy rebuild kits or Cardone axles already done for about $75.
    I didn't see your post until after I jabbered about axel shafts.$75 a side is a bargain!
    I want the ones with the shiny BLUEBoots!Mine are probably worn out by now.I should have replaced them when I had my pumpkin out.
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  11. #10
    CelicaSupra.com Member Black_83's Avatar
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    My car makes these noises in parking lots and such, but I have a welded diff, haha. I wouldn't think it would be the tranny yoke cuz with IRS the diff and driveshaft assembly never move. On trucks, they have straight axles so when the rear end changes height, the whole driveshaft moves with it. So, I'd say definitely diff, axles or blown out subframe bushings.

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