3 Mechanics are unsure

My wife tells me the 2015 Dodge Grand Caravan that there is a grinding noise in the front driver side. It started just when she turned then it became noticeable while even driving straight. I heard the noise and it sounded metallic. So, I thought brakes or wheel hub since it started only while she turned. I took it in and 3 mechanics took it for test drives and they haven’t found out the cause of the noise. They think it is at the beginning of whatever is going to fail.

Now it could’ve been just a weird coincidence that the noise happened while she was turning in the beginning. The mechanic states all components CV axel, ball joints, etc. looked fine and there isn’t any extra play. The only issue I know of is the HVAC system. The blower motor doesn’t work and the A/C doesn’t work. A bad A/C compressor and a bad blower couldn’t cause this noise.

I felt I was safe in my assumptions based off the noise. The only thing they did find was the rear brakes needed to be changed. Is it possible the rear brakes are actually causing the noise? Thoughts on other possible causes like low power steering fluid or steering rack?

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Rear brakes could be the cause… replace them and post back if the noise is still there after replacement.

Noises can be tough to diagnose when you are in the presence of the car… darn near impossible over the internet…

Unlikely power steering is causing your noise.

Maybe you need better mechanics?


If the noise is gone, it could have been a rock that got stuck between the rotor and heat shield making the noise and then fell out. I have had that happen driving on a gravel road.

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Have someone remove the differential cover and see if side gear pin grinding on the trans axle case.


No air conditioning would bother me more than a noisy wheel bearing, that wheel bearing can continue humming for 10,000 miles.

Where do you live that you don’t fix the AC or replace this vehicle . I would drive without AC if I had to but would never expect my wife to do that.

I’ve never used one so maybe it’s not a good idea, probably someone here knows better.

Rather than pay shops to diagnose or guess at the sound location. I’d try one of those $90 (& up) chassis ear systems with the six listening devices. Listen while you drive.

It’s likely a bad cv joint

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I live in Minnesota. She only uses it to drive to work and back, about a 10-minute drive. We have another vehicle that we use for actual trips and running around town. The blower fans sort of works. On low it is okay but on higher settings it just doesn’t blow hard. It is all about priorities. Money for the fan or money towards the other bills like over $600 to have a wisdom tooth pulled.

She works the hoot owl shift 10pm to 6am also it is only like a 10-minute drive to work.

For a 10 minute drive tell her to tolerate the noise until it is loud enough for a mechanic to hear or pay someone to analyze the sound with chassis ears.

Midnight shift , instead of driving this Van if you have a better vehicle then that is the one I would have my wife drive even if it is 10 minutes .

Thank you for your time to pass judgement on this mere pheasant. I would be only so lucky to have such wise wisdom and be able to live my life to the degree in which you have lived yours. You sir are truly are thou most righteous and I shall try my absolute best to absorb thy words and live by them the rest of my natural born life.

Rear brakes changed and it still makes a noise. What has got me is the noise gets quite to almost no noise at highway speed. They went over the vehicle front to back and couldn’t find anything. I will have to take it to a different mechanic to see what he says.

Inspect the front tires, both sides, for marks indicating the tire is rubbing on something. I presume there’s been no changes to the brakes, tires or suspension components system of late. Recent adverse experience w/curb or pothole? No experience w/your make/model, but many vehicles have wheel-well liners, and those can come loose and rub on the tire during turns. An under engine shield could also come loose & rub on a tire. Beyond that, other ideas to consider

  • All fluid levels ok? Engine oil, transmission/differential, power steering?
  • Are all four CV boots intact, no cracks or splits?
  • Do you hear sound with vehicle parked, engine running, just turning steering wheel?
  • A/C compressor on the fritz could definitely make a racket. Make sure A/C compressor clutch isn’t engaging with A/C completely off. Note that the “defrost” setting also usually turns the A/C system on.
  • Any difference in the sound when turning left vs right?
  • Any weird tread patterns on any of the tires?
  • Is this sound heard only when applying brakes while turning?
  • Sometimes a brake backing plate will warp and rub on something. Remove wheel, look for unexplained marks on brake backing plates.

If none of the above, most likely explanation imo is wheel bearing, CV joint, or (if heard when stopped), power steering pump. Tester’s idea of inspecting the differential pin, must be a reason for considering that, but not something I’d think of as a first guess. Differential components do move differently when turning than not turning though.

Could be just the road noise at higher speeds is masking the sound. And at higher speeds not turning the steering as sharply. Getting another shop’s opinion makes sense.