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Old 01-08-2004, 07:36 PM   #1
Scooby Newbie
Member#: 52232
Join Date: Jan 2004
Location: Madison, WI
05's GT-Sedan and B9
Atl.Blue-B9 Silver-sedan

Default differential or wheel bearing?

When I coast in gear or in neutral between around 55mph and 60mph I am hearing a whining sound coming from right rear(?). When I am in the throttle at all the sound goes away. I have never noticed this sound before. Car is wrx with 21,000 miles and 5-speed. Tires are in good shape and I don't believe they are the problem, however could it be tire inflation related too? My initial thoughts are a bad wheel bearing or differential noise. Any thoughts?
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Old 01-09-2004, 01:26 AM   #2
NASIOC Supporter
Member#: 30669
Join Date: Dec 2002
Chapter/Region: Tri-State
Location: USA, North NJ, 07456
1998 Legacy 2.5GT
Silver Sleeper BK, 5MT


Wheel bearings typically make a sound that is based on speed.

Diffs usually change sound with load and speed.

I say jack up the rear of the car and spin the wheels listening for noise.
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Old 01-23-2004, 05:50 PM   #3
Scooby Specialist
Member#: 18642
Join Date: May 2002
Chapter/Region: MAIC
Location: MAIC
2005 Impreza WRX STi


bump for you.

I just started noticing a similar noise last night driving home and again this morning. Only occasionally.

It's a whir ( ocassional) that occurs only under very light throttle ( less than 0 boost) and it seems to come from the right rear. Especially noticeable at 60 - 65 MPH.

Based on other cars that i've owned it sounds very much like a differential noise but reading about all the problems with WRX wheel bearings, that's a possibility. I don't think a wheel bearing would change with load/unload the way a rear end noise does. And I think a wheel bearing is more of a grumble not so much a whirring sound.

I've got 34.5K miles and just started researching this. the noise is not nearly as loud as the rear end noise on my beater or on my Dad's old mercedes ( definitely rear end noises) but certainly concerns me at such a low mileage

Will have to get it up in the air put it in gear and listen, I guess.

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Old 07-20-2004, 07:44 PM   #4
Scooby Newbie
Member#: 13050
Join Date: Dec 2001
Location: Wakefield, MA
02 WRX



does anyone know what makes this noise?
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Old 07-21-2004, 03:57 AM   #5
Scooby Blue
Scooby Specialist
Member#: 12112
Join Date: Nov 2001
Location: MAIC


All the bearings that I have had go make a whirring noise, almost like bad tires. I have found one way to locate the probelm is to drive ~25mph (in a safe place) swerve left and right, sort of like a slalom. See if the noise changes as one side of the suspension gets loaded.
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Old 07-21-2004, 08:34 AM   #6
Scooby Specialist
Member#: 17346
Join Date: Apr 2002
Chapter/Region: South East
Location: All Over NC
08 Cayman S


this sounds like the read diff problem I had.

Take it in to the shop.
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Old 10-29-2004, 04:16 PM   #7
Scooby Specialist
Member#: 3568
Join Date: Jan 2001
Chapter/Region: NESIC
Location: Worcester, MA
2002 WRX EcuTek


Good idea Scooby Blue,
My car just started making a speed dependent noise. Doesn't seem to be affected by engine load. I was thinking it was the front diff or a wheel bearing. I'll try the side to side experiement after work.

Any idear on how much I should expect to pay to get a wheel bearing replaced?
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Old 12-18-2009, 09:37 PM   #8
Scooby Newbie
Member#: 125053
Join Date: Sep 2006
Chapter/Region: VIC
Location: Vancouver, BC
2004 Wrx Sedan

Default same issues here


Wondering what resolve you guys ended up with as I have had the same issue for the last year or so.

At high speeds, usually between 100km-130km I sometimes get this whirring, grumble noise coming from the back. If i throw the car in neutral it rumbles away, then back in gear and throttle, it decreases in noise, and neutral it makes noise again. Eventually it just goes away.

I have especially noticed I get this noise in rainy weather while driving fast on the highway through puddles etc.

I thought it maybe just be my 3" pipe getting hit with water and cooling but now these posts are making me think twice.

all help is appriciated
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Old 02-03-2011, 10:13 PM   #9
Scooby Newbie
Member#: 271154
Join Date: Jan 2011
Chapter/Region: MAIC
Location: Virginia Beach, va
2003 wrx
white- Female Driven


im new to all of this. im a navy wife and hubby is out to sea right now, i have a screaming noise coming from the rear.. bad diff? wheel bearing? dealer said maybe a u joint but from what ive read im starting to think its for sure not a u joint. can you guys help please!
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