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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi everyone,

I think I posted about this a long time ago and I finally just got around to starting my diagnosis. Basically, I heard some noises a while back and instead of guessing and fixing something that wasn't broken, I figured I'd wait until it broke so I was certain. I think something is now on the verge of breaking and I need help with the diagnosis. It's an automatic 1987 C4 coupe with 95,000 miles.

It started with a squeak in the back left wheel. The squeak seemed to get faster as the wheel moved faster. The squeak sounded like a metal friction squeak. As time went on, the squeak got louder and louder. The other day, I'm driving and I hear almost a bang under the car and then a loud grinding noise that seemed to come and go. Fortunately I was only a mile from home and slowly got it back. The grinding at some points almost sounded like something was hanging off the car and dragging on the ground. I got home and looked and nothing was hanging off the car. The noise happened when I was driving straight but got really loud around my last slow uphill right turn into the driveway from a stop.

Today, I got the jack under the rear differential and got the wheels off the ground. I released the parking brake and shifted to neutral. I slowly turned the wheel by hand and I hear the squeak in one particular spot. Also, as I hear the squeak, I hear a rather loud click sound that I don't hear on the other wheel. The sound seems to be coming from the wheel side of the half shaft.

I'm thinking universal on the half shaft or a wheel bearing. Based on my description, does anyone have any ideas or things I can try to narrow in on the possible problem?

Thanks!
Mike
 

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This sounds fairly simple. I would jack the car up and visually inspect all rotational components that are located near the drivers side rear wheel. My first thought, given the "scraping" noise you described, is a wheel bearing. However u-joints are a common (for lack of a better word) failure point with these cars.

Let us know what you find.
 

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Brake pads, or lack there of. If so, sounds like you've destroyed your rotor at this point too...
Maybe, but he said nothing about the noise occuring when the brakes were applied, only that it gets louder as the wheel spins faster. When a brake pad starts to go, the wear indicator makes noise when you apply the brakes, not when you are just driving....

Anyway, it is easy to check the pads, rotors, wheel bearings and u joints, so the OP needs to either do that or have it done by a shop.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thanks for the replies. Nope, definitely not the pads, I can guarantee that. Rotors are fine too.

Now, the last post brought something to my memory. Lately my parking brake feels like it's not doing anything. I had the intention of adjusting it, but haven't done it yet. About 2 months ago, just to test the parking brake, I pulled it at 5 mph. It make a heck of a noise. I haven't really played with it since. I don't like using the automatic as a kick stand with no parking brake, but I figured it could wait.

That said, I'm not sure it's related to this issue, although it certainly could be. Doesn't the parking brake squeeze the passenger side rear wheel and not the driver's? I'm having issue with the driver's side.
 

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I believe the 87 has a internal drum type parking brake. Using the inside of the rotor as a drum I think. So exchange the words "Pads & Rotor" to "Shoes & Drum...../rotor".....

At any rate, I think the rotor needs to come off before you'll know what you're dealing with...
 

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Thanks for the replies. Nope, definitely not the pads, I can guarantee that. Rotors are fine too.

Now, the last post brought something to my memory. Lately my parking brake feels like it's not doing anything. I had the intention of adjusting it, but haven't done it yet. About 2 months ago, just to test the parking brake, I pulled it at 5 mph. It make a heck of a noise. I haven't really played with it since. I don't like using the automatic as a kick stand with no parking brake, but I figured it could wait.

That said, I'm not sure it's related to this issue, although it certainly could be. Doesn't the parking brake squeeze the passenger side rear wheel and not the driver's? I'm having issue with the driver's side.
There are parking brake shoes on each side in the rear.
 

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Does anyone know where the hell to find the spring that helps keep tension on the inside of the "drum" or rotor? Mine snapped and when I park on hills I kinda miss the e-brake.
 

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Awesome.

I was hoping to find just the spring so I didn't have to buy the whole kit, but it looks like that won't happen. I'll have to make the investment, maybe this winter.
 

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I'm with ya on that. I can't see myself paying that kind of cash just to replace a spring.

Honestly, the first thing that came to mind was the front brakes on a 98 suzuki 4 wheeler I have. You might could try a local atv shop if you have one you could match it up with.

I hesitate to mention any off track idea on this forum because of (as you well know) the ridiculing idiots who have killed this place.....
 

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No I understand. I was changing the brakes on my Tundra and thought, "Boy these springs look awfully similar." They both have the same sized rotor I believe, so it might be worth a shot. It can't do worse than the invisible spring I have in there now.
 

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I hesitate to mention any off track idea on this forum because of (as you well know) the ridiculing idiots who have killed this place.....
Really? I had not noticed <<ooooooooozing sarcasm>>! I'm with you Mat, every time I log on I hesitate to click on any topic where a certain few seem to be pi$$ing up ropes. Wait for it....flame throwing on the prowl.....:catfight:

Back to topic now....I had a brake pad/shoe do something very similar, it made a racket non-stop and got worse when the brake was applied....IF I had kept my radio volume at a decent dB, I may of actually noticed it before the grind showed up! Consequently, my repair was far more expensive than it should been! LOL!
 

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I'm with ya on that. I can't see myself paying that kind of cash just to replace a spring.

Honestly, the first thing that came to mind was the front brakes on a 98 suzuki 4 wheeler I have. You might could try a local atv shop if you have one you could match it up with.

I hesitate to mention any off track idea on this forum because of (as you well know) the ridiculing idiots who have killed this place.....
I wouldn t worry about it Mat, those guys are usually beating their wives at this time of day..lol
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Hello! Got the car jacked up, pulled the half shaft, and the problem is absolutely the outter u-joint. Thing is, I banged the crap out of it and it's stuck in there pretty good. I'm going to rent a ball joint or u joint press from Autozone or Advance Auto and see if that helps. If not, I'll take it to a machine shop and see if they can pull the old ones and press in the new ones. Thanks for the help everyone!

Mike
 

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Suggest letting a machine shop do it. It will not cost much. Call them up and ask them the price. I have a big bench vice and I do u jounts with that and large sockets. No need to bang on anything, not the right technique and you can damage the yokes and new u joints.
 
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