Car humming at 48 and 73 mph only


Hey guys, I have a 2016 Audi A3 with 55k miles on it. My car has a unique humming sound at higher speeds only, you can roughly hear it at 48, and can hear it loud as day from 72-74. Over 75 you can’t hear it and under it you can’t hear it.

It can’t be tire wear/noise, I have all 4 brand new tires that have been balanced, rotated, aligned.

There is NO pull on either side of the car when going these speeds.

Car drives in a straight line no issue.

I put the car in neutral when I was going 73 and it still makes the noise with no change in tone or anything so I’m not sure if it is tranny related.

Doesn’t make any noises at idle or low rpm’s/low speeds

Car does NOT shake when braking at high/low speeds.( in balance/ and can’t be rotors)

The sound it makes sounds like a hum following the rotation of the tire, (hummm hummm hummm) if you could sound it out lol.

Lifted the car and checked to see if there’s play in the tires, zero movement so it leads me to think it’s not bearings/ but then again I’m not sure maybe it is?

Also on a slight curve, for example on a freeway curving to the left you can hear the noise humming quicker same tone, just more rapid, if I’m carving left at said high speed. any thoughts on that?

I figure might as well change the trans fluid and cancel one of the options out, that’s getting done this week when I’m off sometime.

Thanks for any help.

Did this noise begin after installing the new tires?


when you are turning left the weight gets transferred to the right side, so it is most likely on the right side. even new tires can have a defect. I would swap the tires and see if the noise follows or changes.

No before, so I replaced all 4 and did the whole alignment, balance and it still makes the noise.

Sure it can be tire noise… and your description is exactly the type that would BE tire noise.

Did you have this noise before you bought tires? How many miles did you put on the tires before they were rotated? Did the noise happen after rotation? Before rotation? Both?

It made the same noise before with the old tires and I changed it and did everything you would for a new set and it still makes the same noise.

Noise was like this on the old tires, same noise on the new tires, I never balanced them/rotated them on the old set I just swapped all 4 and got balance, alignment and it’s still making the same noise.

Is this a quattro? I believe non quattro models have a CVT automatic. IS it an automatic?

Automatic, 1.8t premium plus s-line non Quattro. I believe it’s the dsg trans in this model.

scan down the page on the link. there are some sound clips. you might have a bad wheel bearing. see if it sounds the same

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Is the vehicle all-wheel-drive?


Thank you for this! I’ll check it out. It seems identical to what I’m asking too

What you are hearing is a resonance. It can be the tires if the replacement tires are the same make, model and size of the previous tires. Todays tires have different size tread blocks and spacing. Tires inherently make a lot of noise but by making the tread blocks different sizes, the pitch (frequency) of the noises generated are different. The sizes of the blocks are computer generated so that the different frequencies cancel each other out making the total noise from the tire lower.

But even with all the technology, the different frequencies generated by the blocks, which change with speed, can at some speeds become resonant where the noise becomes additive instead of subtractive (canceling). These are usually at very distinct speeds.

However, I really think you are in the early stages of wheel bearing failure. As the bearing wear out more, the noise will occur over a wider speed range until it is constant. When that happens, it will be time for new hubs.

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The symptoms sure sound like a tire or wheel problem of some type. Out of balance, out of round, warped belts, etc. Could occur even if just after a balance job. I find wheel weights laying in the gutter all the time while on walk-a-bouts; attaching weights is just not a very robust way to balance tires imho. But that’s the way its done, and I don’t see anything changing about the problem any time soon.

So its possible a wheel weight fell off and now one of the tires is not balanced. That would certainly explain the symptoms. The problem with this idea is that everything else you say, you had the same problem at the same speeds with the prior tires, etc, that makes me think the problematic tire/wheel theory unlikely. Suggest however to still ask your shop if they spot a blank spot indicating a missing wheel weight.

I’m guessing as most likely, the problem is in the final drive section of the transmission, or if your car is AWD, could be in the AWD differential contraption. Next most likely, something plastic/flexible is rattling. Under engine shield, wheel-well shields, exhaust system components, etc. Ask your shop to do a quick-check on those, esp any exhaust system/cat heat shields, make sure nothing is loose.