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Peter Bagley
Peter Bagley, Toyota mastertech
Category: Nissan
Satisfied Customers: 652
Experience:  master tech at Toyota dealer
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Front left clicking sound when moving at slow speeds only

Customer Question

Front left clicking sound when moving at slow speeds only after cold start. Disappears after 5 minute warm up. clicking is proportional with speed. slow speed = slow click. faster speed = faster click. I can feel it on the floor board when driving and can hear it when outside of the vehicle.
JA: Where exactly do you think the noise is coming from? And how long has this been going on?
Customer: Front left wheel area. Been going on for about 1 month.
JA: What is the model/year of your Nissan?
Customer: 2005 Murano. About 131,000 miles.
JA: Are you fixing your Murano yourself? What have you tried so far?
Customer: Yes.Replaced both front wheel bearings and drivers side axle shaft.
JA: Anything else you want the mechanic to know before I connect you?
Customer: No.
Submitted: 8 months ago.
Category: Nissan
Expert:  david craig replied 8 months ago.

Hi Im David. thanks for visiting the site. is the reason for replacing those parts because of the clicking or it started after replacing those parts?

Customer: replied 8 months ago.
It started after replacing the front wheel bearings. I replaced them as I could hear a whining or humming sound at certain speeds and while turning at higher speeds such as turning onto an highway exit ramp. I've returned the drivers bearing once for a warranty replacement and the clicking returned.
Customer: replied 8 months ago.
I replaced the drivers side wheel bearing for the 2nd time about a month ago. I also replaced the drivers axle shaft about 2 weeks ago. The clicking is never noticeable after a 5 minute warm up.
Expert:  david craig replied 8 months ago.

ok. double check the caliper bracket bolts. make sure the anti rattle clips for the brake pads arent dislodged and hitting anything and make sure any cotter pins that you replaced arent sticking out. also check the backing plates on the hubs and make sure they didnt get bent out or in.

Customer: replied 8 months ago.
I've replaced the cotter pin with a new one and no change so I'll rule that out.
I'll check the anti-rattle clips and the hub back plate.
What I don't understand is I can start the vehicle and let it sit running for 5 minutes and the clicking can barely be felt once I start driving. If I start it and drive it the clicking is only noticeable at about 10mph or less and is not noticeable after driving a mile or so.
Customer: replied 8 months ago.
My info says torque the axle nut to 92ft-lbs. Is that correct?
Expert:  david craig replied 8 months ago.

yes.

Expert:  david craig replied 8 months ago.

did you use a washer behind the axle nut or was there not one there for the old one?

Customer: replied 8 months ago.
There was no washer. I've re-used the OEM axle nut.
Expert:  david craig replied 8 months ago.

ok. how about the tone ring hitting on the wheel speed sensor?

Customer: replied 8 months ago.
Not sure I understand "tone ring". I was very careful removing and re-aligning and installing the wheel speed sensor though.
I suppose I could remove the wheel speed sensor and temporarily secure it to see if clicking goes away but would the computer throw a fault code?
Expert:  david craig replied 8 months ago.

the tone ring is what the sensor picks up it signal frome as the axle turns. its a metal round piece with teeth on it. if you loosen the abs sensor the abs light will come on, but when you put it back on and start driving it will go out.

Customer: replied 8 months ago.
Ok easy enough to try but I don't see how this could be once the vehicle is warmed up (after 5 minutes) the clicking simply disappears and is not noticeable at all. Seems I should notice this while on jack stands and manually rotating the wheel hub. The other thing I'm considering is to re-install the OEM wheel bearing that I still have to see if the problem goes away.
Expert:  david craig replied 8 months ago.

true. did you replace it with an aftermarket?

Customer: replied 8 months ago.
Mid range price. I believe the brand was Moog.
Expert:  david craig replied 8 months ago.

moog is top notch. id be surprised if it was causing the issue, but worth a shot i suppose

Expert:  david craig replied 8 months ago.

i can opt out aand let another tech give an opinion

Customer: replied 8 months ago.
Ok good to know since I've already replaced the new bearing hub assembly with another of the same and the problem didn't go away. Thanks and I'd sure be interested in another opinion please.
Expert:  Peter Bagley replied 8 months ago.

hello and welcome to just answer. I see you would like another opinion? I value your input on any questions I may ask to better help you.Does that cotter pin fit tight in the hole or loose?Does the clicking get louder or softer when you turn your wheel ? have you checked that tire for any stones or metal in the tread area?. The last thing Next time you are driving and hear it lightly touch the brakes to see if that makes it go away or increase it.Do you have any rust build up on the rotors?Give me input on all these questions then we can start illuminating items.

Customer: replied 8 months ago.
Hello, Yes the cotter pin fits snug. No change in sound or feel when turning. I've checked the tire. I can still hear and feel if lightly braking. No rust on the rotors. The clicking sound is in the drivers side front and I can feel it on the floor board is only in the first five minutes and then disappears. If I do a cold start and let the car sit running for 5 minutes and then drive it doesn't seem to click. Or if I start and drive away it clicks for about the 1st mile or so but it's only noticeable at speeds less than 10mph. Once the vehicle is warmed up I it's not noticeable at all.
Expert:  Peter Bagley replied 8 months ago.

Just one more question to clarify something, you said it has to be moving to hear it ? it won't do it sitting while it warms up?

Customer: replied 8 months ago.
That's correct. Only noticeable when moving at slow speeds of about 10mph or less. I can feel it on the floor board and if I were to walk outside of the vehicle I could hear it too.
Expert:  Peter Bagley replied 8 months ago.

Ok this is hard not being there to actually see and listen to it with you so I'm going to ask you a strange thing. Seeing that you hear it at a very low speed we might get away with this.have you got an area that you can get up to that speed with no cars around like a parking lot ?What I would like you to do is remove the brake pads on that side completely and pinch the brake flex line with a pair of vise grips so you won't activate the caliper piston this will eliminate any brake issues totally and at that speed you don't need to apply the brakes that hard to stop it.

Customer: replied 8 months ago.
I understand. That is a weird request. I forgot to mention that this morning I did some low speed driving tests. While lightly applying the brakes the clicking didn't stop other than to slow proportionally with the vehicle slowing. It doesn't click in reverse or neutral. The brakes and rotors aren't that old as I did them myself with quality ceramic pads and drill slotted rotors. I don't believe the brakes are the cause unless I'm missing something.
Expert:  Peter Bagley replied 8 months ago.

very well Certainly sounds like you bin meticulous and diligent in your work.Next question, does the vehicle have to be down on it's wheels to hear it or can you duplicate it if the front wheels were off the ground, also just for the hell of it have you tried rotating that wheel to the back and see if the ticking follows it?

Customer: replied 8 months ago.
A few weeks ago I did have both front wheels off the ground and rotated the wheel but don't recall if I noticed anything.
Not sure about rotating the tire since there is no clicking sound in reverse or coasting while in neutral. Again this all disappears in about 5 minutes after the vehicle is warmed up.
Expert:  Peter Bagley replied 8 months ago.

Yes I realize what you stated previously, you stated you turned the wheel by hand? correct? I was hoping to turn it via engine slowly as you would be applying pressure on the drive train. also I understand about no noise backing up etc but at this point we have to eliminate all concerned and not assume anything, I have seen where tires were cracked in the rim area where you couldn't see it causing noises also the rim itself. so won't hurt to rotate just those two on that side.

Expert:  Peter Bagley replied 8 months ago.

You also stated you walked beside it when it was moving to hear the clicking, can you position yourself more in the middle to actually see if the nois is infact from the wheel are or perhaps more to the middle

Customer: replied 8 months ago.
I'm gonna say it's from the middle outward. I can feel it with both feet on the floor board but can't determine if it's more pronounce from the middle or outer area.I'l have to try in the next day or two to raise the vehicle and start it and place it in drive to see if I can find anything.
Expert:  Peter Bagley replied 8 months ago.

That would be the way to go, then you can use a stethascope or screwdriver to your ear to walk it along to pipiont the location.If you need I'll be here for further help let me know what you findI hope it's not something silly like a stone caught in the wheel some where.

Customer: replied 8 months ago.
I hope it actually is something silly as my gut is telling me something transmission and/or transfer case related.
Expert:  Peter Bagley replied 8 months ago.

This is why I wanted you to get under it while running to walk a stethoscope along the suspected area to pinpoint it because drive line noises are notorious for traveling and making you go on a wild goose chase.