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Front end noise

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Aug 22, 2017, 11:03 AM

Post #1 of 2 (702 views)
Front end noise Sign In

Hi, I just purchased a 2006 Pontiac grand prix (base) when i purchased the car it needed a wheel bearing. The noise was extreme so I couldn't hear anything else on in the test drive. Now that I fixed the bearing (YouTube) I can hear something else. Now I know the car needs a alignment as there's extreme inner tire wear. The only thing that's bothering me now is this slight tap/knock that I can feel in the steering wheel. I feel and hear it when I quickly move the steering wheel left and right and also when accelerating, braking, and sometimes while turning. I've had the car jacked up so there's no pressure on the front end and everything seems tight as for tie rods, sway bar and links, cv boots look good, no play in ball joints, and when I did a suspension check by bouncing the front end there's no noise. Any advice on what else to check or look for would be great. Would like to fix this issue so I don't do further damage if it's a severe issue.

Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
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Aug 22, 2017, 12:40 PM

Post #2 of 2 (691 views)
Re: Front end noise Sign In


Bulletin No.: 01-02-32-001P

Date: November 25, 2009

Subject: Clunk Felt/Noise Heard From Steering Column, Steering Gear and/or Front Of Vehicle During Turning Maneuver and/or Steering Wheel Rotation (Replace Intermediate Shaft As Directed)

2001-2004 Buick Regal
2005-2008 Buick Allure (Canada Only), LaCrosse
2000-2008 Chevrolet Impala
2000-2007 Chevrolet Monte Carlo
1998-2002 Oldsmobile Intrigue
2004-2007 Pontiac Grand Prix

This bulletin is being revised to add the 2008 Buick LaCrosse/Allure. Please discard Corporate Bulletin Number 01-02-32-001O (Section 02 - Steering).


Some customers may comment on a clunk type noise coming from the front of the vehicle while driving during a turning maneuver. This condition may also be felt through the steering wheel when the vehicle is stationary and the wheel is rotated from steering stop to steering stop. Some vehicles may only exhibit the noise once for every 360° of wheel rotation. On all other vehicles, this clunk noise will be noticed during low speed acceleration or deceleration, typically in light turns of the steering wheel or when applying/releasing the brakes.


This condition may be caused by a "slip stick" condition of the steering intermediate shaft resulting in the clunk noise or feel through the steering wheel.

Diagnostic Tip

This condition is commonly misdiagnosed as originating in the steering gear and has resulted in the replacement of numerous steering gears without correcting the concern.

Attempt to duplicate the customer's concern and isolate the I-shaft by following the procedure below:

1. Locate a large area (parking lot) where the vehicle can be turned in a tight circle.
2. Turn the steering wheel to the right and/or left all the way to the steering lock, then off the steering lock a 1/4 turn.
3. Drive the vehicle approximately 5 km/h (3 mph) in a circle, preferably over rough pavement or seams on the road surface.
4. Drive the vehicle straight ahead at idle speed while applying and releasing the brake pedal. Listen/feel the steering wheel for the clunk/noise condition.
5. If a clunk is felt in the steering wheel, the MOST likely cause is the I-shaft - not the steering gear. Continue with the correction.


Replace the existing intermediate shaft using the service procedure found in Service Information.

Since we volunteer our time and knowledge, we ask for you to please follow up when a problem is resolved.

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