The rear end noise

So my '95 Galant with 136KM started this noise in the rear passenger side. It is a knocking noise, constant when driving slow. As if every stone in the pavement is generating one knock. I know my rear struts are not in great shape. Jacked the car up and everything else seems to be tight by hand. Overall the car might have all but 6 months of life left in it-but that is a rough guess.

I can buy the struts online for $45/side. Do I need the mounting kit too. or it comes with the strut? (The websites won’t tell me that) Is this a worthwhile investment of time and money for this car?

How difficult is it going to be to take the bottom nut off if it is rusted, that is without an air tool?

I guess shops charge $20 to reassemble the strut, or should I borrow a coil compressor?

Would I need a 4 wheel alignment after?


I would go back and re-examine that rear suspension again. Look above the top of the tire at the rubber bushing in what is called the rear steering knuckle. This is what mounts the knuckle/brake assembly/wheel assembly to the body of the car.

These have been prone to rotting out and it does not take much movement in them at all to cause all kinds of noise. Make sure that bushing is tight on the mounting bolt.

Now the good part. If you need this bushing it appears that it does not exist. I have yet to be able to find one anywhere on earth. It is only available with the steering knuckle from the Mitsubishi dealer at a couple or three hundred dollars a pop.

These bushings can be beaten to death by weak struts. If you’re not familiar with strut swaps I would advise that you proceed carefully and use a good spring compressor as a strut spring can cause injury or even be fatal in the right circumstances.

There is a way around that upper bushing business if you choose to do it. I’ve repaired several of them by machining an aluminum spacer for a press fit in the knuckle. The spacer is then tapped and a grease zerk installed. The zerk is accessible without even removing the rear wheel and a shot of grease every 10-20k miles should let it outlive the car.

There are other things in the rear that could potentially cause a knock; problem in the rear brakes, loose hub bearing, etc.
You can easily check the latter by raising the wheel off the ground and seeing how much movement is in it. There should be very little play. With the weight off the wheel now would be a good time to examine that uppper bushing very carefully.

Thanks for the response. I checked the “knuckle”, I was not expecting to see this setup back there. With my punch I don’t notice any looseness, but then road plus the car weight is another story. I noticed the knuckle is all rusty itself; car has been in the NE since birth. The strut dust cover is kind of ripped too.
Yes, parts for this car has been fun. My drive to the dealership is 25 miles in South CA traffic. I checked the brakes and the hub and they seem to be decent. I wouldn’t mind paying a shop to give me a good diagnosis, but then having been to the shops around this area they will list everything in the rear to be changed, I guess that guarantees that I would not “return” complaining.

Just for fun, remove the wheel covers, all four. Sometimes it is the way they fit and on occasion they can get a stone in them.

I wish I was that lucky!