2010 Chevrolet Cobalt - Mystery noise

I have a noise that I need help with. it is under the car. it does not do it when the car is not moving or in park. ft does not match the engine speed buy more the wheel revolution speed.It is not metallic.it is in the front. it sounds to me like a rubber or nylon item hitting something in the front drive train. it is very consistent and starts at about 20 mph as a slow low tone growl and the frequency wave length gets faster as your speed increases and the tone gets higher… the effect reminds me of a kid with a playing card flapping in the spokes but the sound is more of a slow growl increasing to a hum. i had a car run a stop sign a couple weeks ago and i got a very light side swipe to the drivers door and a small dent on the front wheel well but the sound didn’t start till about a week later. i:m an old guy living on soc sec and i;m pretty handy, but i need a little guidance. thanks for your time

Given the accident and the growl noise… I’d say you have a bad wheel bearing. The noise will get worse and it isn’t safe to drive on very long, if it is a bearing.

Since this is a GM car, the bearing is likely bolted on rather thsn pressed into the knuckle. But the bearings can run a bit high - $150 or so just for parts.


I had bad luck with a name brand bearing for my previous Silverado from Pep Boys. It might be wise to try to get. an OEM one. Looks like if you have ABS you’re looking at about 130 for front bearings. They are bolt on.

Could also, and it would be great, be just wheel well liner on the side that got hit rubbing against tire. Wouldn’t that be nice.

OP, have you looked under the car to see if the front tires are rubbing on anything? There are plastic engine protectors and wheel well protectors that sometimes come loose and can interfere with the wheel. If that’s the cause and it happens going straight ahead that would be pretty easy to see just by a driveway look-see under the car.

thanks for the input my grandson is gonna put on a lift tomorrow so we can give it a good look. I’ll post results. thanks again

A torn CV boot flapping around might be the source of the noise.

thanks for the response I’ll check the cv boot.