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Old 05-03-2017, 09:39 PM   #1
kb707
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Default 15+ WRX rear end clunk?

Hello friends,

I recently developed a nice, solid clunk that seems to be coming from the rear passenger side of my 2016 premium wrx. This issue sounds very similar to the well documented front strut clunk found in the inverted fork WRXs.

The clunk seems to be getting worse. It happens every time I pull in or out of my angled driveway. Over almost every low speed bump or speed bump. It frequently clunks during low speed turning and braking too. Like the people with the front strut issue, the issue is more obvious when it is cold out. Over 90 degrees today, and it clunked less, but still clunked.

Before you say, "Subarus just clunk," know that I've been told that before by people BEFORE they hear the clunk, after they witness, they agree- something isn't right.

To complicate matters, I've got a whiteline 24mm rear swaybar with the braces. I'm fairly certain the sway bar is not my issue, I've had the sway bar for much longer than I have had the clunk. I've been under the car to torque fasteners, and all seems kosher.

Could it be stiction in the inverted fork?
Could it be a rear lower control arm issue?
I don't think it's a wheel bearing
I don't see any contact between sway bar or endlink and chassis.
Could I have have broken a top hat in the rear? That doesn't seem common.

Part of me wants to buy some coilovers and hope that settles the issue (assuming strut problem)

The other part of me agrees with you guys who are about to say, " it's a new car, it shouldn't clunk, take it in for warranty work." But warranty work would require that I at least revert to the stock swaybar/endlinks, and even then, I don't want to bring it in with my cold air intake and tune. Now we are getting to a situation that involves a full swap to stock parts, and (I don't have time for that) plus the dealers have been known to ignore clunks.

This clunk will drive me crazy when I drive my car across the country in 2 weeks.

I appreciable any help. Thanks!
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Old 05-03-2017, 10:28 PM   #2
FF_WRX_GOLDENS
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I have the same white line rear sway and braces with kartboy endlinks and I get the same clunking from the left rear side on uneven or angled dips and driveways. AND I have coilovers. Interested in what advice people have for this.
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Old 05-03-2017, 10:29 PM   #3
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Not what you want to hear, but 99% chance its the swaybar bushings or endlinks.
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Old 05-04-2017, 01:12 AM   #4
kb707
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Thanks for the input. Whether or not it's what I want to hear, it may be the truth. Before I give coilovers a go, I guess I will try the OEM swaybar and links.

If I can be sure the clunk is coming from the sway bar, maybe I can learn to live with it. Or maybe someone has a way to get rid of swaybar clunk.

Maybe try the current set up without the braces, I'm not totally sure they're necessary anyway.
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Old 05-04-2017, 09:28 PM   #5
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I did another torque check today. I was able to snug up one endlink's fasteners just about a half turn. I did a driving test to see if by chance that fixed my clunk. It seems as if it did! Not sure how or why, but it seems that additional torque did the trick. Which seems odd since the endlink has bushings, and the sound seemed metal to metal. Maybe this is my final resolution or maybe I will check back into this thread with the same clunk after a few miles.
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Old 05-05-2017, 09:54 AM   #6
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Are you torquing the links with the car at ride height? If you're not, you should be!

A lot of people do it with the suspension at full droop and it causes this issue because the joints are getting bound up.

Not only does it clunk, but it will break links too.
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Old 05-06-2017, 11:46 AM   #7
kb707
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Bingo- id be one of those guys torquing on jack stands... thank you for offering up a solution!

So I should get the car on ramps, loosen, then retighten.

Can I follow up with another endlink question?- say I bolt on coilovers and the car sits 1/2 to 1 inch lower. Do I need to buy adjustable endlinks for the change in ride height? Will these fixed kartboy links still work for me once I'm lowered? I assume fixed endlinks are okay even after lowering since there must be people on coilovers with oem swaybar and links.
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Old 05-06-2017, 05:11 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kb707 View Post
Bingo- id be one of those guys torquing on jack stands... thank you for offering up a solution!

So I should get the car on ramps, loosen, then retighten.

Can I follow up with another endlink question?- say I bolt on coilovers and the car sits 1/2 to 1 inch lower. Do I need to buy adjustable endlinks for the change in ride height? Will these fixed kartboy links still work for me once I'm lowered? I assume fixed endlinks are okay even after lowering since there must be people on coilovers with oem swaybar and links.
dont use the kartboy endlinks, they are a terrible design and just make everything bind.
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Old 05-06-2017, 06:32 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by n2oiroc View Post
dont use the kartboy endlinks, they are a terrible design and just make everything bind.


That's the first negative thing I have heard said about kartboy endlinks.
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Old 05-06-2017, 10:11 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by n2oiroc View Post
Not what you want to hear, but 99% chance its the swaybar bushings or endlinks.
I 500% guarantee it. Had it on my car, got the endlinks torque PROPERLY and it is silent going at low speeds over uneven terrain now.
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Old 05-08-2017, 10:13 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kb707 View Post
Bingo- id be one of those guys torquing on jack stands... thank you for offering up a solution!

So I should get the car on ramps, loosen, then retighten.

Can I follow up with another endlink question?- say I bolt on coilovers and the car sits 1/2 to 1 inch lower. Do I need to buy adjustable endlinks for the change in ride height? Will these fixed kartboy links still work for me once I'm lowered? I assume fixed endlinks are okay even after lowering since there must be people on coilovers with oem swaybar and links.
If you lower the ride height significantly yes you should loosten all the bolts on the bushings and re tighten them at the new height.

No you don't need adjustable length end links unless clearance becomes a problem. If you think about it this makes sense because your suspension was made to cycle through that ride height anyway on hard bumps, so unless you're tubbing the wheel wells or something crazy you'll be fine with stock length endlinks.
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Old 05-08-2017, 10:27 AM   #12
kb707
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Thanks for the help everyone!

I had followed instructions for the swaybar that did not include torquing under load.

I still think coilovers are a good idea. Say I install them myself, are there any tricks? (Like with the sway bar: toque at ride height)

any advice is welcome!
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Old 05-08-2017, 12:06 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kb707 View Post
Thanks for the help everyone!

I had followed instructions for the swaybar that did not include torquing under load.

I still think coilovers are a good idea. Say I install them myself, are there any tricks? (Like with the sway bar: toque at ride height)

any advice is welcome!
pay for swift springs

pay for upper perches on bearings for the front.

anti sieze the ever loving crap out of the bodies and threads

get covers for winter if that's a thing where you live

get someone who knows what they're doing to set your cross weights correctly

don't get stupid stiff rates unless you really need them, 8k is more than enough unless you're doing something extreme. (call a vendor who knows what they're doing to purchase)
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Old 05-09-2017, 01:30 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by uofime View Post
pay for swift springs



pay for upper perches on bearings for the front.



anti sieze the ever loving crap out of the bodies and threads



get covers for winter if that's a thing where you live



get someone who knows what they're doing to set your cross weights correctly



don't get stupid stiff rates unless you really need them, 8k is more than enough unless you're doing something extreme. (call a vendor who knows what they're doing to purchase)


Right on, I've noted all of that.

Any alignment shop set cross weight I assume?

I was thinking I would go with the ohlins R&T. Should I still plan on swift springs?

Thanks.
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Old 05-09-2017, 10:29 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kb707 View Post
Right on, I've noted all of that.

Any alignment shop set cross weight I assume?

I was thinking I would go with the ohlins R&T. Should I still plan on swift springs?

Thanks.
With Ohlins you're probably getting quality springs already.

No, you'll need a specialty shop to do cross weights, somewhere that specialized in performance cars.

A regular shop like Firestone, or a dealer is not going to want to deal with it most likely.

If you have a local AutoX, SCCA, NASA, ect group ask them who they like.

Definitely call them before ordering and installing, see if they'll give you any deals on install, alignment and maybe even ordering the parts.
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Old 05-09-2017, 07:16 PM   #16
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Great info.

Lastly, should I use loctite on any fasteners? Should I torque on jacks, or under load?
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Old 05-09-2017, 07:30 PM   #17
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I can't find a shop in my area to do the cross weighting. I understand the importance of cross weighting, but is it something that could weight until before my next AutoX session or track day?

I'm driving to Colorado from California next week, and I'm wondering if cross weighting is make it or break it.
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Old 05-10-2017, 08:49 AM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kb707 View Post
Great info.

Lastly, should I use loctite on any fasteners? Should I torque on jacks, or under load?
Quote:
Originally Posted by kb707 View Post
I can't find a shop in my area to do the cross weighting. I understand the importance of cross weighting, but is it something that could weight until before my next AutoX session or track day?

I'm driving to Colorado from California next week, and I'm wondering if cross weighting is make it or break it.
A little blue loctite is never a bad idea, but also not a substitute for torquing the bolts properly.

As much as you can torque everything with a moving joint down at ride height

No, setting cross weights shouldn't hurt you much at all for daily driving, just set it as even as you can, eye balling it, until you can get it done properly.
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Old 06-05-2017, 08:47 PM   #19
kb707
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Hey- I thought I would revive this thread since I'm still chasing this damn clunk.

Recap-

clunk developed in the rear end 1000 miles after swaybar/endlink install.

Figured the clunk was due to torquing endlinks with the car in the air- so I put it on ramps and retorqued. The clunk went away- but came back after 500 miles or so.

At this point I figured I blew out a strut or a top hat- so I decided to jump on the Ohlins R&T coilovers I was already looking at. I do the coilover, lower controls arm install, clunk goes away.

I drive my wrx from California to Colorado, and the same clunk returns while crossing Wyoming, 1000 miles into the trip. (only 1,100 miles on the coilovers at that point)

I figured at this point, it must be an endlink bushing issue. That made sense because each time the clunk had gone away, I had just retightened the endlinks. Kartboy sent me 2 endlink bushing kits, and I installed them top and bottom on the rear right endlink, but this time the clunk never went away.

Please help, the clunk is driving me crazy (it's that bad)

I'm running out of ideas for parts to evaluate.

Thanks!!
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Old 06-06-2017, 11:15 AM   #20
uofime
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kb707 View Post
Hey- I thought I would revive this thread since I'm still chasing this damn clunk.

Recap-

clunk developed in the rear end 1000 miles after swaybar/endlink install.

Figured the clunk was due to torquing endlinks with the car in the air- so I put it on ramps and retorqued. The clunk went away- but came back after 500 miles or so.

At this point I figured I blew out a strut or a top hat- so I decided to jump on the Ohlins R&T coilovers I was already looking at. I do the coilover, lower controls arm install, clunk goes away.

I drive my wrx from California to Colorado, and the same clunk returns while crossing Wyoming, 1000 miles into the trip. (only 1,100 miles on the coilovers at that point)

I figured at this point, it must be an endlink bushing issue. That made sense because each time the clunk had gone away, I had just retightened the endlinks. Kartboy sent me 2 endlink bushing kits, and I installed them top and bottom on the rear right endlink, but this time the clunk never went away.

Please help, the clunk is driving me crazy (it's that bad)

I'm running out of ideas for parts to evaluate.

Thanks!!
That stinks!

Can you reproduce the sound on command?

If you can, you might try sticking a camera under there with a view of the D-bushings and the endlinks. You might be able to see what is binding and releasing to cause your noise.

Last edited by uofime; 06-06-2017 at 02:20 PM.
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Old 06-06-2017, 11:42 AM   #21
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Thanks for the idea, I'll give that a try. It can only be reproduced while driving around. I can't do it with the car sitting still- no matter how hard I rock it, jump on it.

But the clunk happens so frequently, it will happen 10 times in my apartment complex parking lot.
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Old 06-07-2017, 11:32 AM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kb707 View Post
Thanks for the idea, I'll give that a try. It can only be reproduced while driving around. I can't do it with the car sitting still- no matter how hard I rock it, jump on it.

But the clunk happens so frequently, it will happen 10 times in my apartment complex parking lot.
Try undoing the bar on both ends and tying it up. I had something very similar on our shop BRZ. turns out it was a dead rear strut.
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Old 06-07-2017, 12:07 PM   #23
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Try undoing the bar on both ends and tying it up. I had something very similar on our shop BRZ. turns out it was a dead rear strut.


Good idea, I'm willing to try that next, in addition to the camera under the car idea.

I don't think it is a blown strut- I had the clunk present for a long time on the stock struts, now the same clunk has returned l, though I am now running ohlins road and track coilovers.
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