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2004 gmc envoy_slt
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
When the car has been sitting for a while and I back it out of the garage, when I turn the wheel slightly, I get a loud clunk from the front. This only happens after the car has been sitting overnight or for several hours. Any idea what is causing this?
 

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'05 Chevy TB EXT
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4,394 Posts
Several things come to mind ... and I'll assume that you use the brakes to stop when going backward after having been stopped when you headed into the garage ... OK?
  1. Brake pads are shifting --- harmless really, but should be examined if so. .. could be a cheap fix hardware problem
  2. The upper balljoint is marginally designed for the loads it has to endure --- it could be worn out (you have 2 upper and 2 lower ball joints - a pair on each side) and they can make oddball noises like this.
  3. The caliper mounting bolts are loose --- this is IMPORTANT and needs to be checked out NOW!
  4. I doubt that the lug nuts are loose --- they don't really act this way when they are loose ... still a good idea to check it out.
  5. Interestingly --- you could have a bad control arm bushing (or two)-- they DO sound like that!
I do no believe your anti swaybar links, bushings, attachments, etc., are a problem here.
I do not believe your rack and pinion assy is a problem, nor would your tierod ends.
I do NOT suspect a broken frame member, foreign object (small rock, pedestrian, dog/cat) is caught somewhere in the suspension and is rattling ... trying to get your attention.

Did I read the YEAR-MAKE-MODEL-ENGINE-MODIFICATIONS in your first post --- if not ---- please post them next.

If they were there --- Im old.




.
 

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2004 gmc envoy_slt
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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thank you for your comments. It is a 2004 GMC Envoy with no modifications. I had been thinking is was worn out U joints causing the drive shaft to make this noise, but then again why only when it has been sitting for a while or overnight?
 

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Premium Member
'05 Chevy TB EXT
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Uhmmmmmmmmmmmm ... if you're actually IN A4WD - and you didn't say that you wuz/is ..... you should NEVER use A4WD at all!

Nope!
Never!
Stop!
Car Killer!
 

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2004 gmc envoy_slt
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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
This weekend I checked the Calipers and they were not loose and pads were properly set. The upper ball joints were in great shape. The front driveshaft seemed slightly loose and clunk sound is happening more frequently. No obvious issues under the car. Any ideas?
 

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'05 Chevy TB EXT
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This weekend I checked the Calipers and they were not loose and pads were properly set. The upper ball joints were in great shape. The front driveshaft seemed slightly loose and clunk sound is happening more frequently. No obvious issues under the car. Any ideas?
HOW did you test the balljoints?

It matters ---- a lot.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Thanks for your response. When I last disconnected the control arms, I noted that the pin attached to the ball moved firmly with no play. There was no deterioration and they had been replaced quite a while ago (i.e not original to the car).
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Some additional clues. It only happens after the car is cold, i.e. sitting overnight or for several hours. It never happens while driving around doing errands. It only happens when I back up and turn the steering wheel, as in pulling out of the garage.
 

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2003 gmc envoy_sle
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Just WAG but, you said the/some ball joints were not as-built. If there a grease fittings, I would test this theory.

Not enough grease,. Possibly not surrounding the ball until it warms up and flows to the contact areas.

Like I said, a WAG. That's my specialty, if it CAN happen, it has happened to me. Most of the time only me in my experience. Race cars help that phenomenon.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Just WAG but, you said the/some ball joints were not as-built. If there a grease fittings, I would test this theory.

Not enough grease,. Possibly not surrounding the ball until it warms up and flows to the contact areas.

Like I said, a WAG. That's my specialty, if it CAN happen, it has happened to me. Most of the time only me in my experience. Race cars help that phenomenon.
Thanks for your suggestion. When I removed the wheels to check the brakes, I greased all four grease fittings on each side.
 

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2003 chevy trailblazer_ls
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Thank you for your comments. It is a 2004 GMC Envoy with no modifications. I had been thinking is was worn out U joints causing the drive shaft to make this noise, but then again why only when it has been sitting for a while or overnight?
Is this a Front Wheel Drive vehichle?
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Dude, you've heard all the bullshot, if you back out hard right or left and hear "Click, click, click" CV JOINTS. fix the two, not just one.! I promise.
It's 4WD, but I keep it in 2WD. That's exactly what I do...I back out and turn left or right and hear the single clunk. Are you referring to the axles or the U joints?
 

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2005 saab 9_7x
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Balljoints. Upper balljoints. That's my theory. It's the most likely reason for this clunk. They can wear out quickly, and they are designed to take wear. Try this craziness to prove it's balljoints: with the hood up, try pushing down hard (repeatedly) on the upper frame behind the headlight on each side of the vehicle. Do you hear a clunk anytime you do that hard enough? Now, get a bud to do that same thing on the side you heard it, while you put a finger on the top of the upper ball joint mount. If you hear the clunk, do you feel it now, too? There you go. Another way: jack the front end. Grab the tire (with one hand at the bottom and the other at the top) and try to violently shake/twist the tire/wheel. If it moves at all, your balljoints are in dire need of replacement. If not, try this additional madness: while still jacked up, with an open palm: punch, kick, or judy-chop the top of the tire sidewall, directly above the wheel. Don't hurt yourself, but give it some effort. You should only hear your hand (foot) contacting the tire. If you hear anything else, like a ringing bell or a metallic sound, either your lugnuts are not torqued or your balljoints are in need of replacement. If you replace balljoints, recommend you replace top and bottom balljoints at the same time: a weak lower seems to be able to kill a new upper. Bushings can make clunks and allow wheel/tire movement, too, but I've found those clunks to be much more regular and repetitive. Speed humps will highlight bad bushings. It seems to me that ball joints wear before bushings with this vehicle. With an '04 Envoy now in '22, almost any rubber part is most likely in need of replacement.
 

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'05 Chevy TB EXT
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Hmmmmmm ---> "judy-chop the top of the tire sidewall, directly above the wheel. " ....

I knew a Judy who could chop your head off and spit down your neck.

Ahhh! Memories --- but I never dated her.



Testing balljoints doesn't really require a Judy --- just jack the vehicle up with a floor jack as close to the tire/rim as possible, directly under the lower control arm.

That way, you will unload the joints from the weight of the vehicle and if there's gonna be any looseness --- you'll find it without Judy helping you.
 

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Premium Member
'05 Chevy TB EXT
Joined
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4,394 Posts
Balljoints. Upper balljoints. That's my theory. It's the most likely reason for this clunk. They can wear out quickly, and they are designed to take wear. Try this craziness to prove it's balljoints: with the hood up, try pushing down hard (repeatedly) on the upper frame behind the headlight on each side of the vehicle. Do you hear a clunk anytime you do that hard enough? Now, get a bud to do that same thing on the side you heard it, while you put a finger on the top of the upper ball joint mount. If you hear the clunk, do you feel it now, too? There you go. Another way: jack the front end. Grab the tire (with one hand at the bottom and the other at the top) and try to violently shake/twist the tire/wheel. If it moves at all, your balljoints are in dire need of replacement. If not, try this additional madness: while still jacked up, with an open palm: punch, kick, or judy-chop the top of the tire sidewall, directly above the wheel. Don't hurt yourself, but give it some effort. You should only hear your hand (foot) contacting the tire. If you hear anything else, like a ringing bell or a metallic sound, either your lugnuts are not torqued or your balljoints are in need of replacement. If you replace balljoints, recommend you replace top and bottom balljoints at the same time: a weak lower seems to be able to kill a new upper. Bushings can make clunks and allow wheel/tire movement, too, but I've found those clunks to be much more regular and repetitive. Speed humps will highlight bad bushings. It seems to me that ball joints wear before bushings with this vehicle. With an '04 Envoy now in '22, almost any rubber part is most likely in need of replacement.
SINGLE SENTENCES FELLOW!

PUT IT INTO SENTENCES!
 

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'05 Chevy TB EXT
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4,394 Posts
Imma gonna go to bed ......


ZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,
 

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2003 gmc envoy_sle
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186 Posts
JACKSTANDS . . . !!!!
Don't do any of these violent actions without them . . .

There, now my conscious will be clear when I hear that you dropped a car on some important part of your body.
 
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