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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I've been spending countless hours finding and eradicating various squeaks, groans, rattles, moans, buzzes, clanks, chattering, vibrations, and other assorted noises. :crazyeyes (I must confess: I enjoy taking apart the car and witnessing the fantastic engineering). It's a shame the craftsmanship isn't on par with the engineering... :(

I will be posting specific problem descriptions and solutions, please add yours here. Photos and step-by-step instructions are ideal.

Later today I will add my "shear panel" experience (this was dealt with in another thread, but I have a different take on it.) Other topics will include: doors and window mechanism, door lock linkage, door strikers, rear engine cover, seats, hard top, rear clam upper brace, and more! It's fun to eliminate noises: you get to hear new ones that you never noticed before! :)

You know how it is: :tadts: so please pitch in!

Thanks,

Thomas
 

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Discussion Starter #2 (Edited)
Shear Panel (also mistakenly called "sheer" panel)

Component: shear panel
Location: under body (must remove belly pan to access)
Problem: bolts may loosen, shear panel may warp, shear panel may be deformed by improper jacking
Symptoms: metallic buzz at certain RPM, emanating from under / rear of car

This thread has good information:
http://www.elisetalk.com/forums/showthread.php?t=20054&highlight=shear+panel

First, remove the belly pan and set aside. Use your fist to gently rap on the shear panel, and what you hear may surprise you.

Next, unbolt the "U"-bracket that secures the shift linkage to the shear panel.

Here is a photo of the shear panel as seen from under the car:


And a photo of the car without the shear panel in place (never operate the car w/o the shear panel in place and properly torqued.)


The shear panel can be completely removed by carefully sliding it in between the emergency-brake cables toward one side of the car. Make sure your wheels are chocked, then release the emergency-brake to slacken the cables. It is still a tight fit, take your time and you will be able to wiggle it out. Be careful not to cut the emergency-brake cables with the sharp edge of the shear panel.

Once removed, check the panel for flatness. Any bulges or bends will increase the noise it produces: the gas tank straps are only a few millimeters away from the shear panel: they can contact and clatter.

Here is a photo of the shear panel removed from the car:


In addition to removing, reinstalling and re-torquing, I took the opportunity to apply some Dynamat sound deadening material. http://www.dynamat.com/products_automotive_dynamat_xtreme.html

**I'll edit this later to add details of removal, re-torquing, etc.**

Before you re-install the belly pan, go around the shear panel and rap on it gently with your fist. Pay attention to the shift linkage cables: mine were making a loud snap. I was able to use a small (1" x 1") piece of Dynamat (just in front of the "U" bracket) to isolate them from slapping into the shear panel.
 

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Excellent thread idea.
 

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Discussion Starter #5 (Edited)
Hardtop Roof Rattles

Component: hard top panel
Location: like, duh. :)
Problem: bumper pad worn or missing
Symptoms: loud rap or bang when car hits bumps

There are many places that the hard top can make noise. One that isn't immediately obvious is the rubber bumper pad located at the rear latch block. (See photo). If yours are worn or missing, the hard top will tap against the latch block and cause wear and noise. Lotus has a replacement kit.

 

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Move your drivers seat back and forth when you first get in to help reduce the noise of the wires under the seat rubbing on the metal underneath.

Pull out seatbelt all the way and let it go back in, often helps reduce the sound of the restraint ball inside bouncing around.

Get heavy duty Velcro and secure the door panels a little better. They tend to rattle when the original Velcro weakens.

Check for quarters under the seats that have dropped out of your pocket - they make alot of noise.

There are screws on the inside of the doors that, when slightly adjusted, help reduce side window clatter: D


Many rattles go away over time....
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Component: driver's-side seat rails
Location: under the driver's-side seat
Problem: seat rails have been installed improperly
Symptoms: driver's seat has slight forward / rearward "play", clunk under braking or acceleration

((Photos to follow))

If your driver's-side seat has been removed and reinstalled improperly, it can cause a slight forward / rearward "play" under braking or acceleration.

There are four bolts that hold the seat rails to the chassis of the car: two at the front of the rails, and two at the rear.

Since there are extra threaded holes near the proper seat rail mounting points, it is possible to chose one or more improper mounting points when re-installing the seat.

If 3 of 4 bolts are in the correct holes, the two seat rails will no longer be parallel and this can cause the problem outlined above.

Thomas
 

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earplugs ( solution for everything ) :D
 

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Lumn8r said:
Or just a louder exhaust:evil: :shift: :evil:
Great Avatar
 

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couple of weeks ago i did some maintenance before a track day.

the main work was changing the air filter. for this i only had one rear wheel and its liner off. once i finished that, i took the chance to check the torque on toe-links, and look around the top of undertray which was still on the car, checking for any caught fluids or fallen-off parts, like i usually do.

i also usually bang under the undertray at different places trying to replicate any noises i hear when driving, and to catch any loose sounds. this time i actually caught something. one of the bangs reproduced this familiar brief metallic rattle i remember hearing sometimes on acceleration and on braking, which i first had thought was coming from something loose in my trunk, but then still heard it even with the trunk empty. so i started banging more to narrow down where the sound was coming from, and as i am looking around i spot a metal bracket-like part sort of hanging and bouncing when i hit on the undertray!

here is the picture of it, once i took the diffuser off and wrangled it out:


it's a big part to just fall off! this is the biggest thing that fell off my car so far (and hopefully that record is never broken).

and this is the area where it seemed to be hanging from - around that part in the foreground with a bolt sticking through it and a red dot on it (this is a view from bottom up, longitudinally just in front of where diffuser meets the undertray, and laterally half-way between the wheels):


so i played with the part that fellow off, trying to imagine what its purpose may be and how it came off. i concluded that i guess that it fell off, or was left hanging there somehow, after i had the toe-line brace installed at the dealer's shop (the brace is the brassy colored part in the foreground of the last picture), and that its purpose is to shield that part with the red dot.

here's how i think it should fit to protect the part with the red dot (this picture is before i actually secured it there):


please let me know if you think that part has some other purpose or if there is somthing wrong with the way i put it back.

i also wondered if that part is even necessary - it's just some sort of a dust shield - but i expect if they bothered to have it, it must be needed.

i have good confidence that the part was taken off during the brace installation and never put properly back on because that noise started happening around the time i picked up the car from the dealer and because, as you can see in the last picture, one of the bolts that holds the brace to the chassis is in the way of the part that fell off, so that i expect that the dealer mechanic either forgot or just never bothered to try to put it back and instead just left it hanging there (maybe on one bolt until that fell out). i had to cut out a little piece of it to be able to put it back.

the bolts that held it originally were gone of course so i went to a local parts store to get some bolts that looked like they could fit. the size seemed to be similar to the fasteners that hold the diffuser in place so i used that as a guide. the bolts i got from the store did not go in perfectly smoothly but smoothly enough. the part is held in place very solidly now.

i did neglect to get washers. i may put them in next time i am near that area of the car. also i worry that the bolts i got from the store are not of proper grade to ensure this does not become a source of rust. anybody know how i can ensure that?

and now that noise is gone.
 

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masheen said:
please let me know if you think that part has some other purpose or if there is somthing wrong with the way i put it back.

i also wondered if that part is even necessary - it's just some sort of a dust shield - but i expect if they bothered to have it, it must be needed.
I suspect from the pictures that it shields the engine mount from heat from the exhaust, and I don't think I'd remove it.

John
 

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Discussion Starter #17
I agree, appears to be a heat shield. Funny thing is that I don't remember that part being on my car, I will need to check that... thanks for the post!

Thomas
 

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a great thread.
i'll try banging the next time i open the bottom of my car.
so far, i just turn off my hearing aids!
can't listen to the radio that way, tho. .......:rolleyes:
 

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I can go all of you one better. At a recent track event, the exhaust system suddenly broke. We determined that the motor was rotating because, of the two bolts which secure the engine/trans to the rear lower motor mount, one was backed out half way and one was gone entirely. We replaced the bolts and I ran the rest of the weekend. When I took the car to the dealer to order the new exhaust, the tech noticed that both of the bolts from the front lower mount were also missing. In other words, 3 of the 4 bolts were gone and and the 4th was half way out. It is impossible to check these bolts unless you are specifically looking for them - they go into the motor or trans itself.
 

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Discussion Starter #20 (Edited)
Door Window Moves Forward and Back / Clunks

Component: door window nylon guide blocks
Location: inside door, between glass and the guide channel
Problem: "play" between the window nylon guide blocks and the guide channel
Symptoms: clunk under braking, acceleration, and bumps in road

I'll be adding to this as I get time... but in a nutshell, if you can move your door windows forward and back, check your front and rear nylon guide blocks. You will need to remove the door panel to check this. The guide blocks are white plastic (nylon) parts that are epoxied to the leading and trailing edges of your door windows (2 in front, 2 in back) and engage the steel guide channel (1 front, 1 rear.)






My passenger door window was making a h*ll of a racket whenever the car went over a bump in the road. After disassembling the passenger door, I found that the rear guide blocks were about 1/8" to 1/4" away from the window guide channel: this allowed the window to move forward and rearward and make a "clunk" each time it did.



Solution: I put self-adhesive heavy-duty felt pads on the two rear guide blocks. This fills the gap and prevents the window from moving fore and aft. I will revisit this later to find a more permanent solution.

Note: this does not appear to be a "wear" issue, it appears to be "slop" from the factory.

ALSO: there is a hard foam block glued to the bottom of each of your composite doors. The window, when fully lowered, should rest against this foam block. If your window is rattling and banging when you hit bumps (when the window is lowered), you may want to check to make sure that the foam block has not become undone.
 
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