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Bump sound from new tires

I purchased 4 Goodyear Eagle RSA tires for my 2008 Honda Civic EX-L 4 door. Upon driving away after the balance, install and four-wheel alignment, I noticed that one of the tires seemed to make a heart-beat-like “bump” noise for each revolution of the wheel. This was most noticeable when driving under 20 mph because above that speed the sound blends in with other road and wind noise.

I immediately took the car back after noticing one of the lugs was loose, and asked them to double check the problem. They tightened all the lugs and sent me on my way.

After leaving I still noticed the sound, but was unable to return to the shop. I did not drive the car the next day at all, and when leaving for work Monday morning, the sound was still quite audible. I returned to the establishment that did the install and they rebalanced the tire(s). When I left, the heart-beat-like “bump” noise repeated once again. At this point, I was already late for work and could not return.

The car is relatively new, the tires are new, the wheels have been balanced (twice) and aligned, what could be causing this disconcerting noise? I’m not doubting the craftsmanship of Goodyear tires, but I don’t know where to turn at this point.

It is not impossible for there to be an internal, invisible manufacturing flaw, things like that happen. The shop seems to be working with you. If their technician can hear it on a test drive, they should replace the suspected faulty tire with a new one, if the noise goes away, that proves it was the tire. If you don’t know which one is making the noise, they may have to mount a new tire on a spare wheel, or use your spare tire to replace one tire at a time to find the one making the noise.

I wouldn’t doubt that there is a problem with the tire… It sounds likely given all else that you’ve tried.

Personally, I’ve had lousy luck with Goodyear products, but then that’s just my experience and hardly representative of their overall quality.

Move the tire to different positions on the car and see if the noise moves with it. If it does, it’s the tire. If it doesn’t, it’s something else.

There might be a defect in one tire. This is possible with any brand.

Has your tire place done a road-force balance (which is a more sophisticated type of balance requiring a fancier machine)? If that doesn’t help, then it’s probably a defective tire, which does happen from time to time.

Thanks, everyone, for all of your insight on this topic. I took my car back this morning and asked the manager if he would drive the car to hear what I was talking about. When he returned he said he definitely heard/felt a vibration coming from the left side of the car with each revolution of the wheel as I described. Upon further inspection, he said that he found a “flat spot” on the left rear tire, and replaced it with another. Needless to say, as I drove away from this particular tire merchant I was thrilled to be done with the bump, bump, bump. Unfortunately, I still need to go back though. In their effort to fix the problem they broke the TPMS and had to order a replacement.