Front End Clunks---Problem Solved?

Tue Nov 20 21:38:00 EST 2001

First off, I would like to thank everyone for their input to my recent
problems. I am new to this list and already have gathered tons of useful
info for my newly acquired Audi.

Next, the front end clunks (two different situations--see below) were caused
by the same problem---loose ball joint on left side. The mechanic who did my
fronts struts finally figured out the problem...After yanking and pulling
everything on my susp. he decided that it was not possible to determine what
it was without putting the car up on the lift and that whatever it was, it
was not a safety problem. He suggested scheduling an appt.  (I would like to
say that although my abbreviated version might seem like the mechanic  was
unconcerned or quick, he really did spend a good chunk of time with the
situation and was thorough with his investigation of the problem--esp. for a
Sat. afternoon). I was in the car pulling away from the shop thinking that
the repair would have to wait 2 weeks (time before his next appt.), when the
loudest of the clunks occurred. He came back out after hearing it, and
discovered the two bolts holding the ball joint to the control arm were
loose. He tightened them up, checked other side and I drove away. Sounds are
gone and I am happy (at least for now).

Finally, do I need to worry about the slot that the ball joint fits into
becoming elongated and therefore unable to keep the ball joint in place for
any length of time? N.B.-I don't think I drove the car too long with the
clunking noise (assuming it happened with the strut work-maybe 400 mi.). Do
I need to worry about the bolts coming loose again? Putting aside the fact
that the mechanic should have realized the problem while he was down there,
do you think he might be directly responsible for the loose nuts? The
mechanic stated that the loose bolts had nothing to do with the work that he
did. The Bentley (with regard to front strut work) says  to remove the ball
joint off at the wheel bearing housing...could he have done the job by
unbolting the ball joint from the arm?


'88 80q 175,000 mi.

----- Original Message -----
From: "Blu" <BLUDODGER at>
To: <quattro at>
Sent: Saturday, November 17, 2001 10:02 AM
Subject: Front End Clunks

> Just recently had rear brakes and front struts done on my car. Now I have
> these two different clunks coming from my front end; one related to the
> brakes and the other with the suspension. Hmmm...I wonder why?
> BRAKING CLUNK: Happens when making a quick stop. It doesn't have to be
> (screeching) quick...just a bit on the fast side. The clunk seems to
> originate from the driver's side. It only happens once per braking
> Suspension Clunk: On slow and tight right-handed radius turns (i.e.
> lots and right-handed turns from a stop) there is a big clunk coming from
> the front end. Otherwise, the car seems to handle and sound pretty
> little excess noise when hitting slight bumps--but that is par for the
> course with these suspensions right?
> I know that these cars are finicky when it comes to their suspensions,
> this car has been in the family since it was brand spanking new and I have
> never heard these types of Clunks and under these circumstances. I did a
> google search but wasn't happy with the responses. As I have just done
> pretty costly repairs on the car I hope I don't hear..."start replacing
> every suspension part in the front end 'til you have a quiet ride."
> These noises seem to have started up as a result of the previously
> work or perhaps as a result of the recent rear differential lock up period
> that I experienced (see previous posts--and thanks for all the
> paid off (altho I can't seem to get the darn thing to function by
> itself...any suggestions on the type of lubricant to put on diff. switch
> rear, it was rusted pretty bad).
> I realize the description of the clunks are vague but I just would like to
> hear what you guys have to say about the possibilities.
> Thanks for the ongoing help
> Blu
> '88 80q

More information about the quattro mailing list