Q: Wheel bearing sound

asked by on

My car keeps making a noise every time I hit around 40 MPH and up. It makes a buzzing noise and it keeps getting progressively louder once I go faster. A mechanic recently changed two wheel bearings on the right side because he thought the noise was coming from that side. I don't want to continue paying for him to change every single wheel bearing on my car. Is there a way I can figure out what side it's coming from, front or back, so I have an idea of what/where the problem is?

This sounds like it could be something flapping or vibrating in the wind and not a wheel bearing. The under car front end should be checked for loose panels or something else. The wheel bearings on your vehicle all have the same mileage on them and sometimes a noise can come from one side more than another. When one side is replaced now the other side will show up and you will hear it. My suggestion would be to jack up the front wheels and see if any thing could be felt. Sometimes once the weight is off the wheel there will be no noise. If this does not isolate the wheel with the noise then just have the other side of the axle you had done replaced. Or have a mechanic like one from YourMechanic try and isolate the wheel bearing noise. The vehicle year, make and model would also help diagnose the issue.

Was this answer helpful?

Hi! Yes, there actually is a way to track down the bearing. Wheel bearing noise will generally change as the vehicle shifts weight, shifting the load onto and away from the bearing. Noise while turning left generally points to a bearing on the right side. You turn left and all of the weight shifts to the right side, putting a higher load on the right side bearings. At this point, have a trained technician hoist the vehicle and use a stethoscope on the left front steering knuckle as well as the rear suspension assembly while rotating the wheel at the same corner. Listen to every wheel. There will be a difference in noise at the bearing. The new bearings on the right should be quiet and the noisy bearing on the left will stick out using this process. I highly recommend you consult an trained mechanic, like one from YourMechanic, to help with your wheel bearing noise.

Was this answer helpful?
The statements expressed above are only for informational purposes and should be independently verified. Please see our terms of service for more details
  1. Home
  2. Questions
  3. Wheel bearing sound

Get an instant quote for your car

Our certified mechanics come to you ・Backed by 12-month, 12,000-mile guarantee・Fair and transparent pricing

Get a quote

What others are asking

Q: Loud bang from front wheel and the wheel locks up in reverse. It didn't show signs of a bad cv shaft. binding or hub bearing?

Hitting a pothole can damage wheel bearings. Basically, the force of the impact causes the ball bearings to get driven into the bearing race and cause indentations in the race. Then the bearing eventually becomes noisy. You could have damaged...

Q: Whisting noise when increasing or decreasing speed

There is a tensioner pulley that keeps the correct amount of tension on your serpentine belt. When these bearings wear out, they can cause this type of a whistling sound that you describe. This is a quick fix and should...

Q: Belt or bearing going bad.

The noise you are hearing is coming from one of the bearings of the tensioner pulley, water pump, alternator, A/C pulley and possibly even the power steering pump if the noise is a bearing noise. Sometimes just a belt noise...

Related articles

How Do Power Car Windows Increase Passenger Safety?
Power windows are responsible for approximately 2,000 emergency room visits every year. When a power window closes, it exerts enough force to bruise or break bones, crush fingers, or restrict an airway. Though...
How Long Does a Distributor O Ring Last?
The distributor is part of the ignition system in your vehicle and its purpose is to route high voltage from the ignition coil to the spark plug. The spark plug then...
What are the Car Pool Rules in Hawaii?
Hawaii is widely regarded as a land of vacation and relaxation, and as such, its scenic roads and routes are far better known than the state’s freeways. But, as with all...