We have a 1999 Forester that has been making a clunking noise in the front end when the car has been driven for awhile and when we make a sharp turn at slow speeds – pulling into a parking space etc. The suspension has been checked and an axle was replaced and the steering assembly has also been replaced but the car continues to make the noise. Could it be wheel bearings or something to do with the all wheel drive assembly?
We have a 2001 Forester with the SAME problem and have had the SAME work done to it! Have you got an answer to your question?
One axle was replaced but what about the other? In some cases an axle can develop odd wear problems that no amount of in-car checking will reveal. Sometimes the axle must be removed and carefully checked on the bench. Of course this leads to the question of why not replace the shaft if it’s out anyway.
Things like a dry and worn ball joint or tie rod end can also cause a clunk sound and these may sometimes need to be diassembled for inspection too. However, I would assume since some things related to that have been apart this was done.
How is the gear oil level in the transaxle? If an automatic trans. this does not mean the ATF as that is separate from the gear oil. A binding ring gear (lubricated by the hypoid oil) could cause something like this.