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Discussion Starter #1
Hi ! I've got an old Nissan Primera P11 [right hand drive] (320,000km) that is making a strange clunking noise.

Sometimes I'm driving along and there is no noise at all. Other times it makes a slight scraping type noise that appears to be coming from the left front of the car. Maybe near the wheel, but it could be closer to the center of the vehicle.

However sometimes the noise will get louder, more of a thud thud type noise that is speed dependent. Sometimes the thud will turn into a loud bang and I can feel the vibration through the steering wheel. Then it might go quiet again.

Under acceleration the noise seems to disappear, but when I lift my foot off the gas and coast, the noise becomes louder.

I replaced the CV joint on that side about 6 years ago (100,000km), and the wheel bearing about 4-5 years ago. I've also replaced some suspension components such as the lower control arm. I know the upper link is a bit worn, but I don't think that is causing this issue (however I could be wrong). The noise occurs on smooth road, not when going over bumps, and it changes according to speed.

Please let me know if you have any ideas as to what the noise could be. I'm hoping I can keep the vehicle going a while longer as I only use it for short local commutes. Thanks for any hints.
 

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Have you checked the transmission mount. It's hard to tell what sort of noise you're experiencing, but I had strange noises coming from the left side and thought drive or suspension, but it was the trans mount.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks for the suggestion, but I think it must be something to do with the drive shaft. The noise depends on wheel speed. I will double check it though when I'm inspecting the vehicle this weekend. The noise went away for a while, but it's now back. Can I link a video here ? I uploaded one on youtube.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Sounds like wheel bearing!!!
Thanks for the suggestion. Have you heard a bad wheel bearing make that noise ? I thought they made more of a whirring / growling type noise. Anyone it definitely is a good candidate for the cause. I think I will have to take it out and inspect it.
 

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If the noises changes when the road changes or you input steering, it is very likely the wheel bearing.
 

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Use a stethoscope. jack it up, put it in neutral and put the scope in different spots while turning it by hand. If it's a wheel bearing that dry , you could probably shimmy the wheel or see grease . Or if it's an inner axle cup grab the axle, watch both joints for moving , check in out play and spin play like when the trans is turning it. Sounds like a churn in a hollow dry metal cup. Stethoscope best $10 i ever spent.

When you did the LCA did the axle pull out of the inner cup real far? Might of pulled the grease out . Especially on carquest axles. They use the wrong grease on the inners. I use gsp they have been decent. Had a carquest it lasted 2 wee
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Thanks for the tips. Even though I changed the wheel bearing about 4 years ago, it was indeed a bad wheel bearing. The cage which the ball bearings sat in had completely disintegrated. It was in about a dozen pieces. Crazy !! I live in New Zealand and a lot of the parts places here sell some really bad quality bearings. This time I found a place that sold reputable brands.

The noise has gone now ! So one less problem to worry about.
 
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