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High-pitched squeak over bumps and cracks in road


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Hey everyone,

I have a 94 STS with 120k miles on the clock. About a month ago I hit a coyote when it ran in front of me on a busy road and I had no choice but to hit the thing in the 1 second it all happened.

A while after I noticed that when I would go over any irregular parts of the road that I would hear a squeaking on the outside of the car coming from the front-end or even under the floor shifter or passenger foot well.

I noticed that it is not limited to motion of the vehicle because I can hear it at lights with the trans in Drive and the foot on the break. I also notice it when getting out of the car and closing the door that it will squeak.

If I close the passenger door whether lightly or hard I will always be able to duplicate the sound which sounds like it is coming from the pass wheel well.

The sound is really loud and echoes off houses, cars and even at highway speeds and can be consistent at times and sound like a dry bearing squeal/squeak. Look around and shook everything but cannot locate it or duplicate when parked it other than when closing doors (Heat shield is not the culprit from what I can tell).

Has anybody out there experienced this?

I also am noticing on an inconsistent basis that when accelerating the front end will shake almost to a violent level and then the next time the car will accelerate smooth and straight. Could this be ball-joints?

This car and I share a love/hate relationship. She's like that girlfriend that always cheats on you and yet in your stupidity you always take her back when she shows you her curves and her incredible performance that no other girl can match... :wipetears

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Hey everyone,

I have a 94 STS with 120k miles on the clock. About a month ago I hit a coyote when it ran in front of me on a busy road and I had no choice but to hit the thing in the 1 second it all happened.

A while after I noticed that when I would go over any irregular parts of the road that I would hear a squeaking on the outside of the car coming from the front-end or even under the floor shifter or passenger foot well.

I noticed that it is not limited to motion of the vehicle because I can hear it at lights with the trans in Drive and the foot on the break. I also notice it when getting out of the car and closing the door that it will squeak.

If I close the passenger door whether lightly or hard I will always be able to duplicate the sound which sounds like it is coming from the pass wheel well.

The sound is really loud and echoes off houses, cars and even at highway speeds and can be consistent at times and sound like a dry bearing squeal/squeak. Look around and shook everything but cannot locate it or duplicate when parked it other than when closing doors (Heat shield is not the culprit from what I can tell).

Has anybody out there experienced this?

I also am noticing on an inconsistent basis that when accelerating the front end will shake almost to a violent level and then the next time the car will accelerate smooth and straight. Could this be ball-joints?

This car and I share a love/hate relationship. She's like that girlfriend that always cheats on you and yet in your stupidity you always take her back when she shows you her curves and her incredible performance that no other girl can match... :wipetears

Yep... sounds like a Caddy to me... you hate them one moment.. but you'll forget all about it soon.

I would start by asking where did the coyote hit your STS?. Did the wheel hit him, or was it more towards the middle of the car (engine/tranny area)? Driver side? passenger side?

Is it louder when revving then at idle? If you hear it while parked, it does not necessarily means that it has to do with engine/tranny as the cabin and seats are so comfortable that you will rarely notice any 'shakings' on the engine bay. Oh, one more thing.. when you close the door to duplicate the issue, is it with the car idling or completely off? It could be 'something' that became loose and is rubbing against something (not very helpful I know, but you'll need to know where the hit happened) If the Coyote was hit on the side of the engine where you have your pulley, I would verify that first. I doubt it has something to do with suspension really.

About the shaky front, have you checked your lug nuts lately?

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I apologize, sent the prior post too soon, here is the steps if you want to test your ball joints...

1. Raise and support front of vehicle allowing suspension to hang free.

2. Grasp tire at the top and bottom, then move top of tire in an in-and-out motion.

3. Check for any horizontal movement of the knuckle relative to the control arm.

4. If any movement or looseness is detected in the joint or if the joint seal is cut, the ball joint is bad and must be replaced.

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The coyote had gone under the center of the car and rumbled its way past the fuel tank and out the back.

Snapped the air dam off its clips but that was an easy fix I'm sure we're all used to doing.

But yes with the engine completely off I can duplicate the sound. Lug nuts seem to be torqued properly although it wasn't myself who had done them last but the folks at Kal-tire. Maybe I'll break out the impact and take off both wheels to take a look underneath, test ball joints, and tighten on the wheels myself.

I have trouble believing it to be lower motor mounts as I would assume the impact of closing a door wouldn't exert enough energy to rattle the engine... But I guess with Caddy's anything is possible.

Thank you for the fast reply btw.

This is my second caddy, I picked her up last year and the body is mint with the original black cherry paint job that you never see around anymore. Motor is a replacement from a 95 and tranny is still in great shape.

I can't get mad at these cars for long after they break down considering the mileage they have on them but it is just depressing when such a beautiful looking automobile can sometimes run like that 89 tempo with 400,000 miles on it and somehow still be moving on its own will.

I find Caddy's to be temperamental, one day they can be giving you 29mpg and driving clean and smooth with tons of power... And then the next day they are hesitating and giving you crap mileage whilst rattling and shaking.

They have personality; I love em! :D

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If the noice came from the engine/tranny mounts, you could possibly re-create it by slightly pushing/pulling the engine which I too believe it hard to believe.

If the coyote was running, it probably first hit the car on one end (the passenger's side perhaps), then ended up in the middle of the car (depending on your speed and the 'yottes speed. Anyhow, there are some plastic parts in all vehicles that uses deadening material so that they don't 'clap' on bumps. If the movement instead of being from top to bottom, is sideways, this otherwise used deadening material can cause high pitch noices. Somethimes cork gaskets may be the culprit.

Bottom line, check for plastic pieces (perhaps around the air dam?) that could've been hit and that could be just a tiny bit loose which could be causing this.

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Well after playing around with the front fascia I found that it was squeaking from a loose white plastic retainer on the drivers side. All I did was readjust it and the fascia wouldn't play anymore.

Started it up and boom noise came back. Checked the retainer and it was still tight but this time the noise was remaining constant while the engine was on and in park. Looked under the hood again and I had to give myself a smack. Turns out the REALLY loud squeak was coming from the top engine mount bolt ever so slightly rubbing against the shroud that covers the water pump pulley. 2 seconds with a flat-head screwdriver and some light prying and the sound is gone. :yupi3ti: Its amazing something so benign can ruin your driving experience.

I also re tightened the lugs nuts and checked the ball joints and they seem good but still a little bit of a shimmy on acceleration but CV shafts front tires were replaced in November so I'm going to assume that since then the tires may need to be balanced and the wheel bearings should be checked.

Thanks again for the help!

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Well after playing around with the front fascia I found that it was squeaking from a loose white plastic retainer on the drivers side. All I did was readjust it and the fascia wouldn't play anymore.

Started it up and boom noise came back. Checked the retainer and it was still tight but this time the noise was remaining constant while the engine was on and in park. Looked under the hood again and I had to give myself a smack. Turns out the REALLY loud squeak was coming from the top engine mount bolt ever so slightly rubbing against the shroud that covers the water pump pulley. 2 seconds with a flat-head screwdriver and some light prying and the sound is gone. :yupi3ti: Its amazing something so benign can ruin your driving experience.

I also re tightened the lugs nuts and checked the ball joints and they seem good but still a little bit of a shimmy on acceleration but CV shafts front tires were replaced in November so I'm going to assume that since then the tires may need to be balanced and the wheel bearings should be checked.

Thanks again for the help!

Excellent!!! It is always good to have a pleasant ride on a more than pleasant car!!! Happy Driving!!!!

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