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Discussion Starter #1
Hey guys, so before I got this car, the previous owner noted that it needed new outer tie rods. When I test drove it I didn't notice any clicking or popping sounds when steering. This popping sound it makes is only at idle or very low speeds, such as making a 3 point turn. I replaced the outer tie rods but noticed the inners were also bad as well as one of the CV joints. My apartment complex started doing a retrofitting for earthquakes and so I can't really work under my car anymore since I have to park on the street. So I took it to a shop and they replaced both inners, both CV joints, both lower control arms w/ball joints, both wheel bearings (they were also bad) and tightened everything they could and it still makes the sound. The guy couldn't figure out what it was. I've read that it could be bad strut bearings or a bad rack and pinion.

Also, when I had the front on jacks, when I was replacing the outers, I went lock to lock and it never made a sound, so it's only when the springs are under load.
This is the suspension setup from the previous owner if that helps also:
Koni Yellow Shocks at 55%
1.5in drop Lowering Springs

I haven't found an exact answer so here's a video of me steering lock to lock at idle a few times. I'm hoping someone has experienced this exact noise and symptom and has a solution.

 

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How are the bushings on the control arms?
 

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Have someone look at the steering rack when you do that to see if there is movement. Do you even feel it in the cabin when it happens?

Another thing to look at might be the sway bar and its bushings.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Well, I went out to my car and looked under it and here are both of the sway bar endlinks. I'm not sure how I didn't notice when I changed the tie rods or the guy who changed everything else. Could this be the noise or is this just another problem? Also, how can I tell if the sway bar bushings are bad?
20190910_172811.jpg
20190910_173030.jpg
 

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I want to say yes, pending wheels and ride height as the bushings are not that far from the outside.
 

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My Spec does a similar pop when backing up on certain occasions. All my suspension is newish, so I'm afraid it might be the steering rack. I have given it a lot of abuse over the years.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
I'm hoping mine will stop after putting in the new end links and possibly new bushings. I can feel the car sway a bit when driving straight so the end links should fix that too. I've also heard of the noise coming from a cracked subframe which I really hope is not the case.
 

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A quick test would be to just disconnect the links and do it again. If it's gone, you know what's the problem, if not then you eliminated a possibility. It's possible that your bushing to the rack is done too.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Well since the links are already bad I bought some new ones that I'll hopefully be able to get in this weekend since I might have a spot to work on my car and jack it up. I'll be able to look at the subframe bushings while I'm under there too. And okay I'll check the rack bushing too.
 

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If you're talking about the kmember/subframe where the control arms bolt on to, they have no bushings to the body. It's straight up a stud out of the body and a nut. Not even a locating nut to center it.

Go look under there too and see if the springs are sitting on the insulator at the bottom of the spring perch. If removed or worn, that thing will make all kinds of noise.
 

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That seems loud. I would think the first thing to check is the steering shaft knuckle, the shaft that runs from the firewall to the rack. Its easy to see if u have someone move the wheel for u.
 

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To me it sounds like the pop happens about middle steer, right when the wheels change from slightly left to slightly right or slightly right to slightly left.
I don't think it would be the steering knuckle as it goes around a couple of times from lock to lock so you would be hearing more than one pop each time.

I had a steering knuckle freeze up on me once and I noticed it sticking multiple times through the lock to lock rotations.
 
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