Are you finding your suspension making squeaky noise while riding or hitting bumps? If yes, a question might be popping up in your mind, is a squeaky suspension dangerous? In general, a squeaky suspension isn’t something life-threatening. However, it indicates there is an underlying issue with your suspension.
Here comes the main confusion because squeaky noise can be sourced from different issues and all suspension systems don’t have the same design. In case, the noise is created due to a severe issue, you’ll gradually head to dangerous situations.
With this in mind, you should have a clear idea about the causes of a squeaky suspension and how to fix it. Don’t worry, we have all the information right here. Just stay with us till the end.
Is A Squeaky Suspension Dangerous?
First thing first, let’s explain our thoughts about whether a squeaky suspension is dangerous or not with more detailed information. So, what does squeaky suspension mean?
A squeaky suspension generally refers to a condition when the suspension creates a high-pitched squeak or chirp during travel. In this situation, certain metal or rubber parts that either remain attached or come into close contact suffer from a lack of lubrication and go through continuous friction.
As we mentioned in the beginning, a squeaky suspension isn’t a life-threatening fact, in other words, it doesn’t mean an immediate danger. But the fact is that the parts responsible for creating the squeaky noise are gradually wearing out.
If you leave the suspension in this condition, the issue will creep into other parts as when joints or linkages are worn or damaged, it will affect every single component linked together. To be safe on the safe side, we don’t recommend you continue driving when your suspension is making a squeaky noise.
Read also: Is Stiff Suspension Good For Off-Road?
Common Causes of Squeaky Suspension
If you search online about squeaky suspension, you may find people talking about different facts like squeaking noise while driving but not brakes applied, suspension creaking when braking, squeaking noise from either front or rear suspension, and so on.
These all are different scenarios, but the real concern is the squeaky noise. However, the moral is that squeaky noise can be heard from different portions and it can be either continuous or occasional.
But why does this happen? Because the sources or causes of the noise are different. To assess a squeaky suspension noise, you should know about what causes it. So, here we will discuss some common causes of squeaky noise in a suspension.
The several rubber bushings found in every individual joint are part of the suspension’s specially designed system to provide a smooth ride and minimize friction as well as noise.
You will discover these bushes on ball joints, anti-roll bars, and front shocks, amongst others, which play this role anywhere metal might be in contact with metal.
Suspension bushes are particularly prone to wear as they’re made out of rubber and regularly subjected to strain. Wear will cause the bushes to become thin and may cause increased friction.
This will lead to issues while riding, including a clunk and squealing if you’re going over bumps. As soon as you detect indications of deterioration, examine them. Damage to them can be detected visually.
Worn-out Ball Joints
Aside from rubber bushings, the ball joints in your suspension system will also wear out and this is one of the most common explanations behind the squeaking suspension noise. These joints are constructed of a rotating stud thread and socket that are included in greased recesses.
The ball joints on your vehicle act as pivotal points for the suspension and wheels, enabling you to move your vehicle freely. Even though they often last a lifetime, sooner or later, they are going to become in need of repairs.
They may break, like the damaged seals letting in dirt and particles, reducing the lubricating properties of those joints. In such instances, you’ll likely hear the squeaking sounds. If you notice rattling, a harsh ride, or just worn tires alongside these meows, you have to visit a shop as soon as possible to fix your ball joints.
Defective Internal Parts of the Suspension
Yes, we have previously talked about the reasons behind the squeaking noise both are related to damaged or worn-out parts of your suspension. However, the fact is that these two parts are mostly regarded as minor components and they’re both easy and affordable to replace.
Now we’re going to talk about some internal parts of your suspension that can also cause squeaking noise. These parts may need a significant amount of cash to fix. For instance, if you have damaged axles, you are dealing with a much more significant problem and may wind up with a massive repair bill.
Squeaking noise is frequently observed in travel over any sort of bump. This is not especially limited to axle problems and can be a possible symptom of bigger issues with your vehicle’s suspension.
The nature of the problem varies depending on the type of shock absorber you have installed. If hydraulic, it could have to do with air leakage or even air pressure.
Yet another possible reason is an oil leak. Additionally, worn springs could result in squeaking noises. In diagnosing the problem of a vehicle, it is necessary to isolate the shock absorber. If there is no issue, isolating the shock absorber narrows out the likely causes for the issue.
As the name implies, these are mountings points made of rubber similar to suspension bushings. Rubber mounts are used for minimal motion and have capacities similar to those of engine or transmission mounts. These sorts of mounts are usually placed at the rear of the lower control links.
And because they’re made from rubber, which means the substance can be damaged over time. As a result, the mounted components come in close contact or friction, bringing about squeaking sounds when driving.
Loosen Steering Wheel Linkage
Your steering wheel is hooked up to your suspension setup, so if a problem is detected it may be the one you undamaged rather than the one you have inadvertently damaged.
If you are taking a particularly rough hit, your steering wheel handle may have been dislodged. In that case, tightening the steering wheel will fix the issue. On the plus side, this may be more simple to deal with than you may think.
Lack of Lubrication
Based on the nature of how your suspension functions, it has to be entirely lubricated so it can run properly. There are several parts such as ball joints, bushings, etc. that will slide as well as roll, and that need to be lubricated well enough in order for it to achieve this without squeaking.
Using oil or grease can be useful when dealing with such sounds. You can consult your regional auto mechanic to learn more about how to lubricate your vehicle.
How do I stop my suspension from squeaking?
You can eliminate squeaking suspension noise by replacing all the elements of your suspension system. Is it ever going to pay for itself? Probably not, given that changing many elements of your suspension system will require a large amount of money. On this consideration, we have simplified a way to repair a squeaking suspension.
Find the Source of Noise
The first and foremost duty to repair a squeaky suspension is to find the source of the noise. The most troublesome part of repairing a squeaky suspension might be discovering the source of the squeak. Yeah, it is possible to crawl under the car and pay attention to it while someone else plays with the body of the vehicle.
However, this maneuver could be dangerous as well as ineffective because noises often can be inconsistent, depending on how your vehicle moves around. It may seem like you’re hearing the sound of spring creaking within the bones, but you’re not; it is the ball joints 12 inches away.
A conventional stethoscope might work here, but it may be difficult to use, and you could injure your fingers. As an alternative, your best bet would be a simple hearing probe. This can be made easily just with a plastic hose, and a 12-inch long metal rod.
Simply squeeze one end of the tube through the end of the rod, and plug the other end into your ear. Press the opposite end of the rod to the suspected point of a squeaking sound and tell your assistant to keep bouncing the car. Once you’ve identified the sound, it will come out clearly through the probe and into your ear.
Jack Up Your Vehicle
As you have determined where the squeaking or creaking noise is originating from, try to jack up your car. In the event that you don’t have a jack, it’s best to purchase one rather than tearing your hair out trying to fix the issue on your own.
However, you should select a jack that matches your car’s jacking points. Once you jack up your car, you can place it on jack stands to eliminate the risk of it collapsing on you. You might as well just avoid the whole thing and cut your losses and seek assistance from others if necessary.
Lubricate Your Suspension Parts
Around 90 percent of the squeaks in a suspension come about due to insufficient lubrication at the points of contact between rubber to rubber, metal to metal, or metal to rubber.
If your suspension system is made up of ball joints, sway bar end links, and steering links that utilize grease fittings, begin by adding lubricant to them. With a little luck, this will fix the problem.
The tops of the coil springs and the firming cubes connected to the springs may also be hookups to squeaking sounds. Sometimes, by just lowering the springs, you can eliminate the squeaking, and rubbing the surfaces on either side of the isolators with a bearing grease is usually enough.
Hopefully, as you work in the region, an available lubricant will work to slow down the friction in the assembly. Old springs gradually break. Yes, you summarily need new springs but remember to just apply some lubricant in the short term.
Replace Worn Bushings
If it’s confirmed that your suspension’s bushings are worn, lubricating might not be enough. As you know they’re made of rubber, so they’ll eventually break and lead to metal wearing gradually. As soon as you detect a bad rubber bushing, replace it immediately.
How Much Does It Cost To Fix?
You may be inclined to postpone fixing the squeaky suspension due to the concern that it’ll cost you a lot of money. How much do you think it will take to repair your tire squeaking in the end?
It will largely depend on the severity of the squeaking, the make and model of your vehicle, the extent of damage to your vehicle’s suspension, and the make of replacement parts you buy, whether it’s a DIY repair or it will be done by a professional.
In general, the cost to repair a squeaky suspension may range from $80 to $400. Lubricating different parts won’t cost you more than $80, while large suspension system problems could incur a lot more expenses.
With regard to the price of replacing suspension shocks, the approximate repair cost can be about $150 to $250 if you perform the repair work yourself. However, if you hire specialists to replace the suspension shocks for you, repairs are scheduled to pay between $200 and $1500.
It’s imperative to realize that you shouldn’t ever suppose the squeak of a defective suspension system is something you can conveniently put up with. For starters, you might not be conscious of the reason for an issue causing the squeak in the first place, even when you call in a specialist for a repair job.
You can’t be sure about the issue getting progressively worse until it is dealt with. If you’re experiencing squealing noises, especially if they take place after driving over rough terrain, you should not go on until you can repair or replace your suspension system.