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Grinding noise in first gear?

I was wondering if I could get some advice. My boyfriend REFUSES to get his car looked at, so I was wondering if I could get a second opinion from any of you out there regarding this problem he's been having.

He has a used automatic Hyundai Elantra, and every time he starts the car and drives it at low speeds, there's a low level grinding noise. It's especially evident when he's turning corners.

Any ideas what this might be? Is it serious? He drives forty minutes to see me twice a week and I just don't want his axle to break or something cataclysmic like that when he's on the highway! I have a feeling he may trust the folks on the car talk discussion board more than my (gentle) nagging. Thanks!


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