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Old 01-16-2013, 04:19 PM   #1
Jesseandchester
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Default Strange Engine Tone/Vibration **Only in Snow**

I have checked around and cannot seem to find what sounds like this problem anywhere. This only seems to happen when in the snow, which makes me think some powder is getting jammed somewhere under the body, but always better safe then sorry. I wish I had a good video, took one on my way to work this morning, but it came out poor.

What is happening is in the 2000-3500 range the engine tone is slightly off, it sounds like it is fighting itself to move. I would say its close to normal but way louder with a vibrating/whirring hint to it. If I had to pinpoint it, it would be just ahead of the shifter along the driveshaft. The bigger concern is the vibration. During this, there is a good amount of vibration that I can feel throughout the car originating in the center around the front of the driveline.

Im thinking that this could be snow that gets caked on somewhere, but my thought is that the snow would come off after a short time. Given my drive was only 25 minutes, I had the issue the whole way.

Just looking to see if anyone else has had this issue and or has a idea of what it could be.

Appreciate the help! Thanks!
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Old 01-16-2013, 04:32 PM   #2
JohnM10
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I would check for ice build-up in the wheels and or drivetrain.
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Old 01-16-2013, 07:36 PM   #3
Jesseandchester
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Thanks, that was one thought of mine, would be the best if it was something as easy as that, just going to suck to get below the car in the snow.... but what are you gonna do.
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Old 01-19-2013, 03:33 AM   #4
ssfd721
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I ha d the same problem with my wifes 08 impreza ... turned out it was just snow build up in the wheel wells nothing more then that now i make sure that there is no build up befor i go somwhere and i havnt had a problem since... hope this is whats going on with youre car and nothing worse
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Old 01-19-2013, 04:03 AM   #5
Counterfit
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jesseandchester View Post
Thanks, that was one thought of mine, would be the best if it was something as easy as that, just going to suck to get below the car in the snow.... but what are you gonna do.
Automatic touchless car wash with underbody spray.
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Old 01-21-2013, 12:15 AM   #6
Orionstrident
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i have had a similar issue in wet loose grass
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Old 01-21-2013, 08:45 PM   #7
Jesseandchester
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Im expecting some snow tonight, if it adds up, ill be taking a look for any buildup. Sounds like thats probably the issue.
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Old 01-21-2013, 10:01 PM   #8
JustMatt
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Had a similar problem. One of the last snow storms we got, I did some tearing around in the unplowed portions of my driveway. Wheels and front grille were packed with snow after my fun. Poked all the snow out of the spokes of my wheels, wheel wells, grille and everywhere else I saw packed snow.

The next day when I was driving to work, my car was vibrating and driving abnormally. Slowed down and took it easy to get into work, but during the day it got above freezing and when I left it was riding just fine. I don't know where the snow or ice was but since the problem went away after warming up, I'm pretty confident that had to have been the source of the problem. Hope your problem is resolved just as easily.
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Old 01-21-2013, 11:06 PM   #9
97ej22e
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Any rotating mass that it can get stuck to it will throw the balance WAY off, and obviously cause the vibration everyone is describing. Ever see the movie "My cousin Vinnie". "You got mud in your tires" same thing but snow.
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Old 01-23-2013, 12:06 AM   #10
tabruder
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Snow is getting packed around your exhaust heat shields.

Snow can get anywhere (wheels/wheelwells/engine compartment) as previously noted. Wheels get out of balance and engine electrical can even be compromised. The specific "engine tone" and vibration you're talking about is coming from 1 or 2 of the heat shields behind the manifold and over the cats. I've only ever had it when the temps are closer to freezing. With colder temps, snow is too dry to pack in that much. I can't remember which heat shields caused it because I've taken at least one of them out, and haven't had the sound return.

Next time it snows, drive around until you have the sound going on. Then make it to your dealer before it melts and falls out. They can hoist it up and see where it's accumulating. As I said, I took the shield out (advice of my dealer/tech) and haven't had any issues from it.

Hope that helps.

Tom
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Old 01-24-2013, 07:54 AM   #11
Jesseandchester
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Thanks everyone, didn't get the show we were promised here on Tuesday, but it looks like a decent amount coming tomorrow and Saturday. Sounds like a lot of people have had this problem and it will only confirm it for me if it happens again with the new snow. Ill keep you all posted if it happens come tomorrow night/sat morning, but I'm suspecting it will.
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Old 01-24-2013, 07:42 PM   #12
n00b on demand
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jesseandchester View Post
Thanks everyone, didn't get the show we were promised here on Tuesday, but it looks like a decent amount coming tomorrow and Saturday. Sounds like a lot of people have had this problem and it will only confirm it for me if it happens again with the new snow. Ill keep you all posted if it happens come tomorrow night/sat morning, but I'm suspecting it will.
This used to happen all the time with my 06 impreza 2.5i. When I was engine braking it almost sounded like a wrx because of the noise lol. It happens with my 12 impreza 2.0i also. Its just a lot of snow built up underneath. Keep driving and it will melt away.
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Old 03-08-2013, 12:03 PM   #13
Jesseandchester
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So it's been a while, finally got some good snow last night. It's for sure a buildup issue. Just pulled over and cleaned it out a little and most of the noise was gone. Which is good because I just had to drop some money into the engine for the first time in its life this past weekend. I was at 99400mi.... Would've liked to say it made it 100k without any unschooled maintenance! But that's life, love the car, so ill do what I have to to keep it going!
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Old 03-08-2013, 12:04 PM   #14
Jesseandchester
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By unschooled I meant unscheduled... Love the mobile app, but apparently the auto correct on my phone doesn't......
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