Rattling noise after a very hard brake

While driving this morning I had to brake extremely hard to avoid a rear end collision as the vehicle in front of me broke suddenly. Beginning after this, I started hearing a light rattling noise coming from the underneath of my car, heard mostly when going over bumps and cracks in the road. What may have happened here? Thanks in advance.

Absolutely anything could have happened.

If you’d like us to narrow things down just a bit, tell us what you are driving, where the noise is coming from, and a better description of “rattle”.

2018 Honda Accord. Noise is likely coming from under the vehicle but that’s all I can tell for now. I’d have to do some more driving/listening to see if I can tell if it’s coming from a tire or the front / back, etc. it’s a very light rattle sound that’s really the only way to describe it. Definitely not a clunking noise. The more i read the more I think the drop links may have been loosened.

Sounds like it could be a heat sheild came loose.

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So we know what model and year and nothing else.

I will agree on heat sheild as well… IF you live where the roads are salted in the winter.

I might agree with the stabilizer bar end links IF the car has a lot of miles on it. Greater that 80K miles AND if the rattle tends to happen on a single wheel bump.

See how important it is for you to give us information so we can help you?

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Sorry but I’m not sure what else you would need to know about the vehicle itself that would help. Its the braking incident that I’d think would be the best info to know. The accord is an EX model. CVT. FWD

Lots of plastic covers under the car, might be missing some push-pins allowing the cover to rattle.
Gravel/stones trapped above one of the plastic shield may have shifted while braking causing the rattle.

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Read my post… what part of the country do you live and how many miles on rhe car?

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What type of road was it? I ask because it is possible you might have kicked something up during the emergency stop and it lodged somewhere. You really need to get under the car and see if anything is loose or you picked up some road debris. If you or a friend have ramps, you could drive up on them and crawl under the car.

New York


The incident took place on a regular local road. Pavement was pretty smooth.

The sound appears to be coming from the front of the vehicle

how could braking hard cause the heat shield to come loose though?

3 and now nearly 4 year old car in a rust belt state with really poor roads…

I’m going with loose heat shield.

Confirm or deny it with a quick trip to the mechanic.

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Heat shields are affected by momentum just as anything else. A quick stop can finish off a rusted rivet. The only way to be sure is to take @jtsanders advise or let a shop inspect it.


I stand corrected on the area of the sound.

The rattling/clunking is coming from the REAR tire/wheel areas, not the front. I went back and forth over a speed bump and the noise occurs when the rear tires hit. It might even be specific to the rear drivers side wheel but I cannot be sure.

With this info can anyone give any thoughts? Bringing it in tomorrow to be put on a lift but would like to have more knowledge on what to have them look for.

Best way to locate the cause of the noise is to look. Don’t misguide the technician with wild guesses.

Tell your shop what you said in your last post. Let them find the problem. They are the pros, you are the customer. If you tell them to fix x, they will and you will still have the noise (which is now a clunk… at the rear)


Have someone check if one of the brake pad retaining springs got knocked loose on the rear caliper



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Nothing found on the lift. Everything tight. Before he charged me $27 for seemingly nothing he started in with the blame game saying how since this happened after a hard brake and since new brakes were put on (over 2 months ago) that it might have something to do with them and to go back to that guy so he can take them apart and look more internally. Somehow I knew this was going to happen. No clue what to do now.

It “might have something to do with the brakes.” That’s awfully weak. Did he hear the noise for himself? I had a dealer replace the engine mounts and wanted to replace the transmission when it was an axle as I told them all along (problem started when axle was replaced).

He claims it was driven but nothing was heard. I told him of course nothing was heard, you have to know how to listen for it as its very subtle. Big mistake bringing it to this clown this morning. Probably should have just went to Honda, but getting an appt with them would probably mean waiting weeks.