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Thread: 2004 Element chirping noise from driver side front wheel please help!

  1. #1

    Default 2004 Element chirping noise from driver side front wheel please help!

    Hello everyone, I'm a new member here. After our 2004 Honda Element with 74k miles developed a chirping noise coming from the front drivers side wheel I went searching the internet and found this great place! I searched around and didn't really find any topics that matched my own dilemma so I thought I would start a new topic.

    Recently on a nice spring like day here in Maine my wife and I drove around with the windows down (windows down in march in Maine!!) While pulling into the post office and driving next to a brick wall we heard a chirping noise that was definitely coming from our vehicle. This morning I put the car up on jack stands and had my wife put it in first gear to get a better idea of precisely where the noise is coming from and it is most definitely coming from the driver's side front wheel. When the car (Manual trans) is put in 1st gear the chirping noise starts, all the wheels start turning and quickly the drivers side front wheel begins to slow down until it finally comes to a stop. I took a video of it with my digital camera so you can hear the noise and see what I'm talking about. (Hope to have it uploaded to YouTube.) If anyone can help me possibly diagnose the problem I would greatly appreciate it.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EzLEcXnTkjQ (Should be available soon)

    This is a great place here and we love our Element. Hopefully I can contribute some of my own knowledge regarding honda suv's in the future but for now I certainly do appreciate this great resource!

    Thanks,

    RJ


    Edit: It also just occured to me the way the RT 4wd works, should I be alarmed that one of the wheels is stopping? Shouldn't all 4 wheels be turning or possibly just the two front wheels? It seems odd to me that three wheels are turning.

    Hope I can get some feedback. Starting to get worried that something serious is wrong when I thought it might just be something simple like a wheel bearing.
    Last edited by RJMaine; 03-20-2009 at 11:44 AM.

  2. #2
    Senior Member HondaSUV Elder 'Curly Q Links''s Avatar
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    You've probably got 'seized slider pins' in that wheel, or just a lack of your basic GOOP that prevents pad vibration. A simple search will find you everything you need to know.

    It's OK for only one wheel to spin. There a differential in the rear and also in the front (gearbox).

    .
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  3. #3

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    Quote Originally Posted by 'Curly Q Links' View Post
    You've probably got 'seized slider pins' in that wheel, or just a lack of your basic GOOP that prevents pad vibration. A simple search will find you everything you need to know.

    It's OK for only one wheel to spin. There a differential in the rear and also in the front (gearbox).

    Thanks for the reply, I would consider that it's related to the brakes but I serviced the brakes not too long ago and did have the chance to fix the slider pin issue. Filed down the brake tab the slightest bit and lubed everything up with some high temperature brake lube (For the sliders). I think this may be a wheel bearing issue but I don't have any experience with bad wheel bearings. All the cars I've ever owned have had sealed units and up until now I've never had any kind of driveline issues.

    Thanks again.

  4. #4
    Senior Member HondaSUV Elder 'Curly Q Links''s Avatar
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    You could look at all the threads about diagnosing 'wheel bearing' and I think you'll find they never make a high-pitch noise. They usually growl, like using monster tires on pavement.

    I can't listen to the video, but maybe it's a pebble jammed between the guard and the rotor?

    .
    '97 CR-V. . . . . . '00 CR-V SE (leather) . . . '98 Odyssey V-Tec ! !
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  5. #5

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    Quote Originally Posted by 'Curly Q Links' View Post
    You could look at all the threads about diagnosing 'wheel bearing' and I think you'll find they never make a high-pitch noise. They usually growl, like using monster tires on pavement.

    I can't listen to the video, but maybe it's a pebble jammed between the guard and the rotor?

    Thanks for the reply again. I did get a chance to listen to wheel bearing noises and you're on the money, it should be a rumbling noise. I also took everything apart again today and the caliper "sliders" looked great, were still lubed up and the pads moved free with just slight resistance in the notches on the caliper brackets. Still makes the noise though. I'm starting to wonder more about the transmission/4wd though. If I leave the car in first gear while it's up on the jacks and let the drivers side front wheel stop while the others are turning you can see the axle jerking a little where it goes into the transmission. If I use my hand to nudge the wheel just a little bit it starts turning again and then slows down again and eventually stops. Starting to wonder if something is wrong with the manual transmission.

    FYI, I spent quite a few hours last night and today on the search function on this site. While I've learned a lot about the brakes and 4wd system in these Honda's I haven't seen anything similar to my situation.

    Thanks again for the information.

  6. #6
    Senior Member HondaSUV Mentor
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    did you pull the wheels to check if the pads are wearing more on one side than the other? It's amazing how fast the pads can wear when they drag.
    "Roads? Where we're going we don't need roads." -- Dr Emmett Brown, BTTF
    2006 EX M5 - 86K miles -- Homelink, Curt Hitch, WT Cargo Liner, Mud Flaps, Yak Roof Rack, Glove Box switch - TSB04-064, wheelskins (Brn), Magellan 4040, 5-lug naked spare.
    2007 Gl Blue EX - 97K miles - Mats, Cargo Tray, Remote Start, Magellan 4040, Yakima Roof Rack, wheelskins (Blk)

  7. #7
    Senior Member HondaSUV Elder 'Curly Q Links''s Avatar
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    You need to check the temperature of your front rotors after stopping with the park brake. That will tell you if you may have a vacuum booster problem.

    Tegger has lots of good stuff about that problem: See the whole FAQ.

    I'm having to replace my brake pads far too often

    BTW, it's normal for one side to spin 'easier' than the other. It has something to do with the direction the tranny spins. putting it in reverse changes the side, I think.


    Last edited by 'Curly Q Links'; 03-26-2010 at 10:32 AM.
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    First, read the Owner's Manual, then SEARCH, your Internet is STILL WAY faster than mine.
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  8. #8
    Senior Member HondaSUV Mentor Darth Raider's Avatar
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    This usually happens in the 4WD Element around the 40 to 50K mile mark. It is usually solved by changing the differentiol fluid. Be sure to use Honda Dual Pump fluid.

    Chief

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