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Discussion Starter #1
Since the day my Elise was new it has always had a bad rattling or buzzing noise at about 5,000-6,000 rpm on warm days coming from the area of the rear window. The hotter the day, the worse the noise, however on a cold day it was nonexistent. I always figured it was the interior trim around the back window rattling and vibrating because it was so flimsy and when hot it expands quite a bit making it come into contact with various things. I tried everything with the interior trim pieces, but nothing ever worked so I finally gave up. Well, this weekend it was hot outside and the the rattling-buzzing noise was worse than ever especially after the engine was good and hot. As I was opening the engine lid to check my oil, I noticed a strange creaking noise coming from the hinges on the lid. Figuring the hinges just needed some oil, I shot some penetrating oil on them, but the noise persisted. As I checked the creaking sound out further, I realized it was coming from the clam at the base of the rear window. I closed the engine lid and pressed on the rear clam with my hand in the area at the bottom of the window and realized the creaking sound was coming from the clam contacting the rear window glass. Just to see how tight the clam was to the window glass, I inserted a business card in the seam between the window and clam and tried to slide it along the seam. It only made it about 6 inches before getting stuck firmly between the clam and the window. After multiple tries with the card it was apparent the clam was touching the window at three different places along the center of the window-clam seam. After the car cooled down, the clam was no longer touching anywhere long the seam and the creaking noise was gone. Before driving the car again, I stuffed some thin rubber in the seam where the contact was occurring and took the car out for a good long drive in the hot afternoon sun. The buzzing-rattling noise I was hearing before while driving was gone! After all this time, it was the clam expanding and distorting from the engine heat enough to touch the window glass that was causing all the racket. The clam vibrates in relation to certain engine harmonics and the 5,000-6,000 rpm range was all it took to cause the rattling-buzzing sound. It seems Lotus did not trim my clam enough to allow for the expansion on a hot day with a hot engine bay. I would recommend trying the business card trick on your car to see if you have the same problem, and if you do, just stuff something in the seam to insulate it where the fit is too tight. The resulting silence is music to my ears! :clap:
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Hey guys, I don't know how long the little pieces of rubber tape will stay in place in the seam, so I don't know how long this quick fix will last. The only way to fix it permanently would be to remove the clam and trim the edge back, but until I absolutely need to pull the clam for a major repair that won't be happening. Also, it is not easy stuffing insulating material into that seam because it is so tight. I used a small flexible metal tool makers scale (ruler) to push mine in, but I would think a small metal spatula would work well too.
 
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