Best of Deals Car Reviews Repair Shops Cars A-Z Radio Show

Mystery Click

For a year or so now, my car has been making this odd clicking noise. It comes from one of the front wheels, I think, and seems to be more audible in warm weather. The sound kind of reminds me of those little clickers kids put in their bike wheels, and corresponds with the speed of the car (as I speed up, the clicking speeds up).

I took the car to a mechanic friend, and he told me it was nothing to worry about, but it’s really, really annoying, and I’d like to know if there’s any way to get it to stop.

It could be several things but 2 are very common: Wheel covers and disc brake components. Plastic wheel covers are the worse. Just grab hold of each one of them and shake them good. You could take them off and drive a few miles with them in your trunk. A mechanic will have to find the disc brake component noise since the wheel has to be removed and parts of the front brake may need to be removed.

If the clicking is greater when the car is making a slow turn, right or left, it’s likely a cv joint in the drive axel.
The clicking could be from a wheel bearing. It’s a sound which has to be heard, in order to be any surer.

The plastic wheel covers on my wife’s 98 Windstar made a clicking noise at low speeds. Once I knew where the noise was coming from it didn’t bother me any more.

Ed B.

That’s exactly what my mechanic friend said - He decided it was something about the wheel covers, I think, not the CV joint.

How do I tell if it’s a disc break component?

I had a mysterious click click, I took off the covers and there was a lugnut floating around in there. Sometimes a small stone or something can get in there too! Take of the hubcaps to determine if that is the source.