Car Makes Noises When Driving

Your car makes a lot of noises throughout the day. Between the hum of the engine and the sounds of the road around you, it can be hard to pinpoint if the sound you’re hearing comes from your car. If you do notice that a sound is coming from your car, then you should find out where it’s coming from and why it’s happening.

One of the parts of your car that could be making a loud sound is your steering wheel. While you might be confused about why this is happening, there are many things that are used when you turn the steering wheel. Here are some reasons why you might be hearing a sound when you turn the wheel.

Why is There a Noise When Turning Wheel

If you want to know for sure whats causing your steering wheel to turn, you should check for the check engine light. When there’s a problem in your vehicle, a signal is sent to a diagnostics unit and it’s stored as an error code. This can be diagnosed by a professional OBD2 scanner (View on Amazon). It can tell you want to error code means that this will help you know what you need to fix.

Important: If you want to save $100s in servicing, diagnosis, and repair costs, improve your car's performance significantly and increase its value by 1.2x with little effort, download our Beginners Auto Maintenence & Repair Manual now. 

Power Steering Fluid Low

The power steering system uses hydraulic fluid to transfer force from the power steering pump to the rack and steering box. Usually, you can just refill the fluid (View on Amazon) and things will be working normally again. Here’s how you refill the power steering fluid.

1. First make sure the car is level with the engine off. It should be lifted safely up using jack stands.

2. Locate the power steering reservoir and remove the cap. You’ll have to lift the hood of the car to locate it. You can usually just twist the cap off.

3. Remove the power steering system hose clamp, which is usually the smaller of the two hoses that you see after you open the power steering reservoir.

4. When the fluid line is disconnected and a plug is installed over the opening, attach the hose to the return line.

5. Refill the reservoir with your power steering fluid.

6. While using a hatch basin for your fluid, have a helper start the engine, keeping it idle. It shouldn’t turn completely on. This will pump out fluid while adding new power steering fluid into the reservoir.

7. Keep doing this until flush fluid is present in the system.

8. When this is complete, you can reattach the return line to the reservoir and refill the system.

9. Install fluid until the indicator tells you to. Some level indicators are located inside the reservoir underneath the cap.

10. Once the fluid is at the proper level, you can put the reservoir cap back on.

Once you have completed all of these steps, check for leaks. It’s normal for the system to make some noise by the air in the fluid going away and the sound is going to happen for up to a day after you replace the power steering fluid. This is something that you can definitely do on your own, but you can always take it to a mechanic or call someone more experienced to help you replace the power steering fluid.

Damaged Joint/ Suspension

There are a few things that you need to pay attention to if you have damaged ball joints. The first thing you need to know is ball joints last 70,000 miles or more but they don’t last forever. Their life span is dependent on your driving habits, road conditions, and exposure to road salt and splash. If the ball and socket wear out together, the normally close tolerance between them will increase and the ball joint will become loose.

Sound is usually the first indication of a worn or loose ball joint. You might hear a faint clicking noise that seems to be coming from your vehicle. The sound might be louder when you’re going over a bump or a dip. Another sound you might hear is from the steering. Worn ball joints can affect your vehicle steering and this makes the steering sloppy or stiff depending on how the ball joint has worn down. It can also be responsible for the noise that you hear when you turn your vehicle.

Lastly, it may be odd but an uneven tire wear might be a sign that your ball joint is wearing out. If the inner or outer edges of your front tires are wearing out faster than the rest of the tires on your car, then it’s a good chance that you have some worn ball joints.

You definitely want to get them replaced. A worn ball joint is not something you should put off fixing because a failure of any ball joint roll causes your front suspension to come apart and you lose control of your vehicle. If you suspect that you have worn ball joints, you should have your vehicle checked by a mechanic who can diagnose and fix any of your suspension issues. Because this is a serious fix,

you should not try to fix this on your own and the first thing you should do is go to a mechanic for help.

Bad Flex Coupling

Flex coupling is commonly referred to as a steering damper and this is a system component that’s found on many vehicles. It’s a rubber disc that lets it absorb and dampen any vibrations your vehicle feels. As your vehicle is driven, vibrations from the contact that has with the ground are transferred through the vehicle steering system up into the steering wheel. It’s the job of the flex coupling to absorb these vibrations because they can cause steering issues and driver fatigue. If this coupling fails, that can have a negative effect on the vehicle’s handling capability and it might make driving the vehicle very uncomfortable.

There are few other symptoms you might want to pay attention to if you have bad flex coupling. You might feel excessive vibration because it’s designed to absorb these vibrations and it’s not doing so. You might also feel an excessive play in the steering wheel. You might notice some excessive freeplay before the vehicle can actually maneuver when the steering wheel is turned. Also, the excess movement may be causing a clicking sound to come up from the steering column and that could be the sound that you’re hearing coming from your steering wheel.

Lastly, you might feel the steering wheel binder lock up. A worn coupler can cause the steering wheel to do this when the wheel is turned suddenly. This can make the vehicle difficult to stay here and very unsafe to drive. This is usually something that appears after the previous two symptoms mentioned have occurred and it usually happens after you let the couple of we’re out pretty badly.

Flex coupling is found on many vehicles and it’s important to get it inspected by a professional technician. Your car might need a flex coupler replacement and this isn’t something that you should attempt to do yourself. Your mechanic would be the safest option for you and your car.

No Maintainance!

One of the main reasons why your steering wheel makes a noise when turning is because of you failing to maintain your vehicle often. Failing to maintain your vehicle often can result in failures and in this situation it’s your steering wheel that has been affected. Maintaining and looking after your vehicle is something that you need to do regularly unless you’re going to experience a lot of symptoms in your car.

If you want to avoid steering problems or other issues and save $100s of dollars that you’ll spend at the auto repair shop, you’ll need to service your vehicle often – you can use our mechanic-rated Auto Maintenance and Repair Manual to do this. It’s basically what mechanics use to go through your vehicle to check if there are any problems that need fixing. As soon as they notice the most minor problem, they’ll ask you to fork out some money even though it’s a problem you can fix yourself in minutes – the manual will teach you how to maintain your vehicle every few thousand miles and it’ll teach you how to fix minor problems that mechanics will ask you to pay for; saving you money in the long run.

A lot of our readers have the Auto Maintenance and Repair Manual printed on their garage wall and 92% of them haven’t visited the auto repair shop in the last year because they know what to do to avoid problems. All it takes is giving your vehicle a little attention every few thousand miles and you’ll never spend money at the workshop again.

Damaged Wheel Bearings

Wheel bearing is a set of balls held together in a metal ring called a race. At the center of your wheels there’s a metal piece that’s hollow called the hub. The wheel bearings fit tightly inside of its hub and ride on a metal axle shaft. This helps reduce friction while the wheel spins.

There are different types of wheel bearings and they have to be tight enough to keep away water and road test. They are also important because they support the entire weight of the vehicle while driving. This is why they suffer a lot of abuse from rough roads, lateral forces, and potholes. The wheel bearing can eventually give way to wear and tear, which means it might need to be replaced.

The sound is the most notable symptom. If you hear a grinding or grating noise coming from your tire or a very loud sound as you’re turning the wheel, that usually means you have a bad wheel bearing. You may also experience a car that feels loose as you drive and it usually means that your steering is less responsive and less precise than usual. You might even notice some uneven wear on your tires or an odd feeling when you turn your car and it appears in a different direction.

A problem with the wheel bearings can compromise the smoothness of your vehicle and the longevity of your tires but it’s also a real safety concern. It’s very dangerous to drive with one of your bearings worn out you might cause a wheel to stop while you’re driving. It also puts a lot of stress on many other parts of your car. You have to take your car to a mechanic to get it fixed. The cost for replacing wheel bearing is not very expensive and it’s very standard but it depends on your vehicle year, make, and model. You might have an additional cost if you wait to replace your wheel bearing and this causes a lot of other issues with your car that Increase the cost.

Possible wheel bearing issues are something that you should get looked at immediately because the longer you wait, the more expensive it would be to replace.

Worn Shocks and Struts

Shocks and struts stabilize your vehicle’s movements. They give you more control when you turn, brake, accelerate or come into contact with uneven road surfaces. Today’s vehicles use shocks, struts or a combination. A difference between the two is that a shock is an independent component and the strut combines with the shocks and other features to form a structural unit. Both of them help stabilize the car and keep the tires in contact with the ground. Without shocks, your vehicle would bounce down the road uncontrollably.

There are many warning signs that determine whether your shocks and struts are okay. The first sign you should be looking out for his instability at highway speeds. If your vehicle doesn’t feel stable when you reach about 60 miles per hour, this is a sign that they need replacement. You also might have a rear end squat during acceleration. If the front end of your vehicle rises while you accelerate, then you might need a replacement shock or strut.

When you buy replacements, you want to make sure that their quality and brand name shocks and struts. You also might want to ask your mechanic about replacing all the worn parts connected to the struts so that you can make sure your car is working the best it can. This is definitely not something you should replace on your own, so go to a mechanic for help.

Now that you know what’s causing the noise when you’re turning your steering wheel, you can solve the issue. The majority of your car issues can be solved by taking it to a mechanic so that you can get an expert opinion and expert help.