Help with suspension clunking noise.

5835 Views 10 Replies 5 Participants Last post by  RyanV
A problem appeared with my '92 NA. After installing new coilovers, a clunking sound either appeared of became much more noticeable. It comes from the right rear control arm area.

The clunk happens when I hit potholes or washboard areas on the road, or when going over relatively small steps (about 1" or so) such as from the street to a driveway, or a large expansion joint.

  1. I've checked all the bolts that secure the suspension,
  2. removed the sway bar links,
  3. stripped my trunk
  4. checked diff mounts
  5. secured battery
  6. checked camber adj. bolts
  7. made sure the thin gaskets are in there
  8. spaced the rear brace to keep it from hitting the exhaust
Put the car on the lift 3 + times yesterday looking at everything (myself and several other guys), but could not replicate the clunk by physically trying to move the suspension or shake the car.

I did get in the trunk last night and jumped up and down a little bit and was able to hear/feel a clunk, but it's much louder when I'm driving...

This morning I backed it up on ramps and tried bouncing the car but that was a non-starter (car is much to heavy for me to lift). I did raise it with a hydraulic jack and lowered it as fast as it would go down, but that did not show anything.

I tried making the clunking appear again by jumping up and down inside the trunk, and it definitely can be felt and heard in the right side. I can also make it happen but less loudly by repeatedly tapping the brakes sharply when rolling to a stop.

I will try recording the noise and possibly mounting a small video cam to see what happens when I drive and get the clunk.

Any help would be very welcome!

Thanks in advance
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Switched coilovers from side to side in the rear... The clunk switched sides as well. I guess I have a defective shock absorber :p.... I expect I'll get a new one pretty soon. :mrgreen:

I did notice some looseness in the bushing of the right upright. It might be a good idea to change all those suspension bushings too...
Are you tightening the coilovers down with weight on the suspension? If you just bolt it down with it in the air with the suspension sagging it will feel tight but there is still space to be threaded. The clunk would be the tophat slamming into the car because it is loose.
Thanks for the tip. I did check every bolt and nut in the shock mounting as well as a lot of the suspension fasteners. Everything was fine. Last night I finally switched the shocks from left to right and vise-versa and the clunk moved with the shocks....
Well, at least I found the problem, I have a defective coilover :x. On the positive side, FA is sending me a new cartridge to replace the bad one. As soon as it gets here, I'll have it replaced and that should take care of it :mrgreen:.
I didn't want to say they for sure are, just something ive heard tossed around in conversations. There is always a bad one in the bunch, I've seen a bad KW out of the box, and the quality of those surpasses anything I've seen come from any jdm/usdm product.
Yeah, there is always the chance to get a defective unit. I got my new replacement cartridge on Tuesday and installed in the car. Problem solved! And BTW, these coilovers are really nice :mrgreen:. The ride is outstanding so far. I can't wait to take it for a drive to the mountains and see how the handling feels..
How new are the coils? because I keep getting a gut feeling the shock might be blown..or there might be to much stress on the spring when compressed.
The coils are brand new. I found that one of the rear cartridges was defective. After replacing it, everything is fine. These are actually extremely good coilovers so far. The ride is excellent and the handling is very good :mrgreen:
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