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Discussion Starter #1
This is going to be hard to describe; but hopefully it will be familiar to some of you folks...

Starting around 20mph I begin hearing a Whaa Whaa Whaa cyclical sound, seemingly from behind, that increases in frequency as speed increases and vice vs... If I had to guess I would say its bad bearings in the "rear end". However I am not knowledgable about the design details and nuances of the Esprit drivetrain.

Has anyone experienced this? Any advice as to how to isolate the cause?

Thanks
 

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Are here any flashing lights in the rear view mirror while this Whaa Whaa sound occurs?

:D
 

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www.theapexinn.com
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:tadts::UK:
 

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Assuming road speed and not engine speed or gear dependent, it can only be tires or discs or hubs or half shafts. Easiest to jack up rear and spin each side and inspect tires.
 

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Generically, it makes me think of two noises or vibrations that are slightly out of phase with each other. So as one "laps" the other, the two waves add together and get loud, but when they are completely interfering with each other, they cancel and get (relatively) quiet.

You guys probably already knew that. :eek:
 

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Is it mostly heard under light throttle? Does it go away under heavy throttle? If both of the answers is yes, then perhaps your ring/pinion gear in your transmission has some slap.
 

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You can start by checking the obvious stuff like tire pressure, take the tires off and examine them, see if there is a lot of play in the rear axle hubs, the boots on the C/V joints, the oil level in the transaxle, etc. It *could* be bearings but they generally will start making a grinding or clicking noise. Noises are very sneaky. It may sound like it is coming from the rear but it could be from somewhere else. Does the noise change when coasting. hitting the brakes, part throttle, etc.
David Teitelbaum
 

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You guys are TOUGH....:no:



Irox,

Sounds like a rear hub bearing. Common failure on outboard brake Esprits ('89 - up). (Don't discount the front wheel bearings however)

Normally, as WhatsADSM said, a bearing will be noisier when loaded. IE: a bad RR bearing will increase in volume on a left curve, and almost be quiet on a right curve.


To diagnose, jack up the rear wheels (you can lift at the bottom of the rear frame hoop, under the tranny). Pull, push and "rock" both wheels in both the left-right and top-bottom plane. Any movement, and that bearing is suspect.

++++++++++++

As for the front wheels, remember these are the older type that need to be repacked with grease every couple years or so. When was the last time this was done?


PS: If you think the Whaa Whaa is coming from that Crown Vic in back of you, remember that you can't always see the lights on top through the Esprit's rear windscreen. :panic:


:D
 

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Gotta stop doing those 'Whippets'

I agree with Carbuff, sounds like a wheel bearing. Turn a left corner and load the bearing, if the noise is there, then turn right and if the noise goes away the left bearing is bad.
Vise~Versa for the right bearing.
 

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Discussion Starter #17 (Edited)
Any update on this one irox?
In spite of all the good tips on how to isolate the cause I've been unable to follow up on any. Living in a condo community that discourages auto maint in common areas, I'll need to take the Esprit elsewhere to diagnose

Its not severe, at moment, so I believe it wont go bang... Although I'd like to tighten, lube, or whatever is needed before any damage.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Finally had the opportunity to take my '98 in to a local shop....

the weird sound?

The Sumitomo tires... especially the rears... I suppose they are a bit worn; but, Art (the shop guy), said the Sumi's are not a good fit for the Esprit V8 rims. He pointed out how the sidewall tapers inwards and actually causes the footprint to be smaller than it should; when he pointed it out, the inward cup or taper is very obvious; he contrasted it with a set of Conti's that had a nice square sidewall and he said I would get a lot more rubber on the road with a set of Conti's... So, I'll be looking to find a set which will fit the AWI stock wheels... Also, my fronts are over 8 years old... arg...

I'll update this thread with photos of the Sumi's; I know most people are familiar with them; but I'll try to "focus" on the sidewall taper issue that he described...
 

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I couldn't find conti's in stock sizes. Very few reasonably priced options.

I just bought a set of Falken 452's in the stock sizes from Discount Tire (eBay is the cheapest way to buy from them). They were reasonable at about $800 a set.

I am having some Nova wheels refinished to mount them and then I'll be able to give my review.

I have 10 year old Falken 451's on AWI's now and they aren't too bad given the age.


1998 Lotus Esprit V8
 
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