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Thread: Weird popping noise while turning left?

  1. #1
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    Weird popping noise while turning left?

    Hey all,

    Like the title says, I have a weird "popping" noise when I turn left while driving or if I hit a bump in the road. All started today after doing some liiiiight wheeling in 4 Peaks last night (no 4 wheel drive used even, was very nice to the Jeep - still breaking in the new engine) It didn't do it for me while parked in the garage, but as soon as I backed out the driveway and went down the bump, POP. Sounds like its coming from somewhere in the front of the vehicle on the drivers side. As I said before, only happens when turning left. Went around the block making rights for 10 minutes and nothing... the second I turn left, POP. Any little bump in the road brings it up too. Any ideas?

    Thanks!

  2. #2
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    Re: Weird popping noise while turning left?

    A lot of times when you do an engine change on a leaf spring vehicle (like a YJ)... Well oil, fluids, radiator fluids get on and between the leaf springs.

    If it's oil, well it usually makes things quieter but alot of oil will turn the spring eye bushings and shackle bushings to mush, wearing them out much sooner (Can you say metal to metal bolt to spring?)...

    If it's water, the leaf springs will sometimes rust and often causes a "popping" sound as the rusty leaf springs flex and move as a function of "suspension"...

    Just something to think about.... And check...

    Good luck and HTH...

  3. #3
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    Re: Weird popping noise while turning left?

    Billy,

    The leaf spring on the drivers side front is pretty wet and has been for a while now. I have a small leak in the power steering reservoir and it drips a little bit onto the leaf spring. Leaks enough to keep it moist. Its another problem I have yet to take care of.

    Any suggestions on fixing the pop if that is indeed what is happening?

    Also, since you're a huge wealth of knowledge... that power steering reservoir is leaking from the cap on the top. I'm assuming I just replace the cap and viola?

    Thanks for the help already and the numerous times you've helped in the past. Rep points given.

  4. #4
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    Re: Weird popping noise while turning left?

    Quote Originally Posted by romanella View Post
    Billy,

    The leaf spring on the drivers side front is pretty wet and has been for a while now. I have a small leak in the power steering reservoir and it drips a little bit onto the leaf spring. Leaks enough to keep it moist. Its another problem I have yet to take care of.

    Any suggestions on fixing the pop if that is indeed what is happening?

    Also, since you're a huge wealth of knowledge... that power steering reservoir is leaking from the cap on the top. I'm assuming I just replace the cap and viola?

    Thanks for the help already and the numerous times you've helped in the past. Rep points given.
    First off, go over all the spring hardware, check the spring eye bolts, u-bolts, shackle bolts, everything. Don't just look them over, put a wrench on everything and make sure it's tight. Also since you have a YJ and if it has the original track bars still installed, go over them and take a look at the bushings in the track bar eyes (they maybe gone ).

    To see if this is indeed the problem (spring noise wise). I would try spraying down the springs with either Simple Green or something strong Engine Degreaser and give it a good washing with a garden hose... After that, air drying with compressed air should help get the rest of the gunk out, you might have to repeat this to get it all clean... If the noise goes away or subsides in the least you have found your culprit...

    It is possible to feel the spring pop by placing your hand on the spring and have someone SLOWLY drive over a bump (backing out of the driveway over the curb perhaps?). Since you would be walking with the vehicle, well you could be ran over, so you would want to really trust the driver (don't get your 15 year old neighbor who just got their learner's permit). When the pop occurs, it usually vibrates the spring pretty good.

    Now off to the power steering.

    Most power steering caps have a gasket underneath that seals the cap to the reservoir housing, my question is why is the fluid level so high? Most caps have a built in dipstick which usually put's the fluid level well below this gasket to prevent leakages and has a hot / cold level. If the level is okay per the dipstick, what maybe happening is a issue with the PS box or the PS pump. If the control valve in the PS box is sticking it may limit the PS fluid circulation which foams the PS fluid in the reservoir (limiting the fluid flow makes the fluid bypass inside the PS pump reservoir). This foamed fluid (fluid with air mixed in) expands in the reservoir and before you know it, instant overflow and a "leak"... If this is happening, just replacing the cap won't fix the problem as most PS caps have some type of vent hole...

    To test this theory, check the fluid level in the reservoir when it's cold and then again after it's ran awhile (20 minute trip should be enough). If the fluid level is very high and foamy looking when it's hot, there is an issue with either the PS box or PS pump... Some foam is normal, a lot of foam isn't...


    Another tell tail sign of this air in the fluid condition is a noisy PS pump...

    A great place to call about power steering problems is Benchwork's Steering (I believe they are in Scottsdale) you can look them up in the yellow pages, wouldn't take a power steering box to anyone else.

    HTH...and I didn't ramble too much, insomnia (must be race season )...

  5. #5
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    Re: Weird popping noise while turning left?

    Not to hi-jack this thread, but I have a question. My leaf springs shifted a little (XJ) I can't get them to move back, this means I have to get it on a lift to take weight off of them in order to line them up again, right?
    A gold miner is just a liar standing next to a hole in the ground.
    RIP Digger B. Trouble, Rilee the Weed and Kodiak Kid

  6. #6
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    Re: Weird popping noise while turning left?

    Mine was making a similar noise, everything was tight in the steering and with the trackbar (I had a track bar issue in the apst that was a simialr sound). Then I went to check the ball joints and discovered it was the unit bearing. I had quite a bit of play and when I was attempting to remove it, it actually seperated and pretty much fell apart. I'm glad I caught it when I did.
    1998 XJ RE 3.5, 33s, locked rear, open front.
    2000 Tacoma 4x4 TRD 33s

  7. #7
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    Re: Weird popping noise while turning left?

    One of my front U-Joints would make a popping noise while turning very sharply, but it was a rapid pop-pop-pop-pop as the wheel was turned and I was driving forward, like when turning sharply into a parking space.
    Kenneth
    1998 TJ 4.0 MT

  8. #8
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    Re: Weird popping noise while turning left?

    Quote Originally Posted by KennethS View Post
    One of my front U-Joints would make a popping noise while turning very sharply, but it was a rapid pop-pop-pop-pop as the wheel was turned and I was driving forward, like when turning sharply into a parking space.
    Mine only pops in one spot on the steering wheel or if I go over a bump, regardless of size. Any more ideas?

  9. #9
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    Re: Weird popping noise while turning left?

    Did you by chance check the body mounts (wore, broken, loose, missing?), one in the front center under the radiator core support, others as you work backwards to the rear of the vehicle (right underneath the drivers and passengers feet)...

    HTH

  10. #10
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    Re: Weird popping noise while turning left?

    Check the clearance between the radiator and steering shaft where it enters the box.

  11. #11
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    Re: Weird popping noise while turning left?

    Quote Originally Posted by Digger View Post
    Not to hi-jack this thread, but I have a question. My leaf springs shifted a little (XJ) I can't get them to move back, this means I have to get it on a lift to take weight off of them in order to line them up again, right?

    No Hi Jacking here Digger, yes the best way to move the springs back would be to take the weight off, smack the spring back, and double check the tightness of the u-bolt nuts...

    My concern to you would be, are the shifted left to right or forward to back??? Left to right, no biggie (it happens), forward to back, broken spring or broken center pin bolt!!!

    HTH...

  12. #12
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    Re: Weird popping noise while turning left?

    Hey there,
    My name is Mark and I have the same problem with my 2002 KJ. Did you ever find out what the noise was? I am really stumped.
    My Rig:
    2002 KJ Limited with OME lift
    Moabs with BFG AT/KO 245/75/16
    JBA 4.5 UCA
    New CV directly in front of the transfer case
    ARB front bumper and custom rear

    I noticed the noise last week Friday. I was backing out of my in laws drive way and heard a knock. Didn't think too much of it. Then the next day was out in the desert caching and started to hear it more. Now it pops/knocks every time I turn to the left, or darn near every time and about 45-60% of the time when I hit a bump.

    Romanella, I am very interested if you ever tracked down this issue.
    Thanks,
    Mark

  13. #13
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    Re: Weird popping noise while turning left?

    Mark, this thread is 3 years old.

    anyway, I have a KJ. Have you checked the cv axles? If the boot is torn and grease is slinging out then that's your problem. If not it could be your lower ball joints. Look on youtube for a vid on how to check them. It's really easy. Also if none of them turn out to be the problem then check your motor mounts. Sometimes you can't tell they are bad unless you remove them. It's hard to get in there to see. If the motor mounts are bad then applying torque to the motor via gas pedal will tilt the motor towards the passenger side and pull on the drivers side cv axle excessively.
    Quote Originally Posted by mingoglia View Post
    For the record, I'm a douchebag.
    Quote Originally Posted by RyanMichael View Post
    The shaft is completely loose an sloppy coming out of the rear end.

  14. #14
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    Re: Weird popping noise while turning left?

    What can I say, I bring them back from the dead

    I have checked the CV's but wonder if I may be missing one somewhere. All the boots look good and I do not have any grease anywhere. I swapped out the UCAs not all that long ago and when we checked the lower ball joints they looked ok...but that was about 3-4 months ago roughly. Perhaps they went bad since then? I am leaning towards the mounts, I did check them too and they appeared ok, from what I could see. The knock does not happen when you just hit the gas though so that makes me wonder if it could be a bushing on the front diff maybe. I am grasping at straws to be honest. I am about 5 minutes away from taking it to a shop, and I hate doing that...I consider it defeat and that is hopefully never an option.

    I will keep checking though and let you know what I find out.
    Thanks Randy.

  15. #15

    Re: Weird popping noise while turning left?

    I am not sure what t-case you are running but if it is a 242 or any type with a Viscus cupler, What you are discriping is an what happens when it goes bad.

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