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Discussion Starter #1
So I need some expert opinions. I've noticed that when driving very slowly, say 5mph or less especially in a parking garage over the joints i hear a rattle coming from the front suspension, sounds like on both sides. I've pulled both wheels and there is no play side to side or up and down (suspension loaded and unloaded). I also have a problem with a POP sound when backing out of my driveway with the wheels turned, or making any turn through a drainage gutter onto lower or higher elevation. Again, pop has been heard on each side but not necessarily both at the same time.

Car has 23k miles on it. Upon closer inspection I notice that there is no boot on either ball joint. They look like they have been torn off somehow and the joint is pretty dry. I know they will need to be replaced and are probably the cause of the popping sound, but can bad ball joints cause this low speed rattle? Could they also cause a shimmy on the highway? Again, there is no play side to side or up and down so I don't think its the Tierods.....

Also i notice that when braking at about 30mph the steering wheel will wiggle back and forth. On the highway its smooth right down to 30, then it smooths out again. I was thinking rotors but usually you can feel them on the highway. Let me know what you guys think, thanks!

P.S. Looking for good guide on balljoints, from what I can find they look like a real bear to do. I tried the WIKI, but can't find anything...
 

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When checking for the rattle, did you check the sway bar endlinks? Lif the vehicle in the air and grab the sway bar close to the endlink and jerk it up adn down. If any play is felt, replace the link. As for the ball joints, if the boots are torn replace them. It's a good chance that is your popping noise.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
QUOTE (the_intimidator_02 @ Apr 17 2009, 11:22 PM) index.php?act=findpost&pid=718501
When checking for the rattle, did you check the sway bar endlinks? Lif the vehicle in the air and grab the sway bar close to the endlink and jerk it up adn down. If any play is felt, replace the link. As for the ball joints, if the boots are torn replace them. It's a good chance that is your popping noise.[/b]
oops, forgot to mention that. I even wacked the links with a rubber mallet, there was no play whatso ever. subframe mounts look good, as does the lower control arm bushing. Realistically, how hard are the ball joints to do? I'm assuming the knuckle has to come off the car for it to be done? What sort of time are we talking about, i'm pretty mechanically inclined, but mostly with GM (whose balljoints are cake) and never on a ford.
 

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Check for broken coil springs. Very common.

My daughter drives my 2001 Taurus and it rattled. I checked and found 3 broken springs out of 4!.
 

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QUOTE (ZZman @ Apr 18 2009, 10:00 AM) index.php?act=findpost&pid=718561
Check for broken coil springs. Very common.

My daughter drives my 2001 Taurus and it rattled. I checked and found 3 broken springs out of 4!.[/b]
the two times my springs have broke it decided to take the tire with it. :huh:
i guess i'm not lucky enough just to have the spring break and not do anymore damage.
 

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QUOTE (risoworker @ Apr 18 2009, 11:29 AM) index.php?act=findpost&pid=718568
QUOTE (ZZman @ Apr 18 2009, 10:00 AM) index.php?act=findpost&pid=718561
Check for broken coil springs. Very common.

My daughter drives my 2001 Taurus and it rattled. I checked and found 3 broken springs out of 4!.[/b]
the two times my springs have broke it decided to take the tire with it. :huh:
i guess i'm not lucky enough just to have the spring break and not do anymore damage.
[/b][/quote]

I've been driving on broken rear springs for over 2 years! :p

My broken springs have not caused a rattle, but when going over certain bumps, the broken coil will occasionally make a clunk and a pop sound (although, like everyone else, I'm fairly certain your pop noise is coming from those ball joints).
 

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Discussion Starter #8
would I see the crack in the springs? I know I tried to wiggle the strut by grabbing the spring and didn't notice any movement or noise. I'll jack it up again and have a look, I thought the springs were only an issue in the rust belt area where salt is used? This car came from Texas and with such low miles (23k) there isn't any rust anywhere on the suspension components.

Anyways, if I read the Wiki correctly, I don't have to remove my steering knuckle to remove the ball joints correct? just disconnect the tie-rod and seperate the balljoint from the control arm, swing it forward and then use the press to pop it out? Is this true for all Gen IV tauri? Just wondering if something changed in the pre-2000 models that required removal of the knuckle.
 

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If the springs are broken, you'll see a complete separation of a coil from the rest of the spring. Although, some springs will have a rubber cover and they'll break inside that cover, but you'll probably notice the break even with the cover on, it won't just be a simple crack. If there was a crack in the springs, they'd probably snap over the first bump you hit.
 

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The 2 back ones broke and no noise. The front one broke a piece off and that piece rattled against the rest of the spring.
 
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