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Old 10-13-2009, 07:14 AM   #1
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front end growling noise

Hi, I'm new here and looking for advice. I have an 05 tacoma with a 3 inch lift. There is a low frequency growl coming from the front end. A vibration can be felt in the floor board / gas pedal. It is most noticeable around 20-60 km/h. At highway speeds it is not detectable. When I engage into 4x4, it also goes away. I put the truck on a hoist and when I turn the driver side front wheel, there is a clicking noise coming the front diff. I suspected a worn bearing where the cv shaft comes out of the differential as there is some play in the cv shaft. I took it to 2 different shops for advice and they told me the play was normal and didn't know what the problem is. A friend of mine had the exact same symptoms on a 05 Taco, Toyota changed his front diff under warranty and solved the problem. I don't have warranty on mine... Anyone else have similar issues?
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Old 10-13-2009, 07:15 AM   #2
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Welcome to TW!
It sounds like the CV to me, but lets see what some others have to say.
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Old 10-13-2009, 07:20 AM   #3
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Thanks Chris. The cv joint is in good condition. The play is in the part that comes out of the front diff, like if a bearing was worn out inside the diff??
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Old 10-13-2009, 07:24 AM   #4
With sufficient thrust, pigs fly just fine.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Patrick0625 View Post
Thanks Chris. The cv joint is in good condition. The play is in the part that comes out of the front diff, like if a bearing was worn out inside the diff??
Could be... Is it leaking oil? Low on oil?
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Old 10-13-2009, 07:27 AM   #5
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No oil leaks and oil level is good.
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Old 10-13-2009, 07:31 AM   #6
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I would suggest drain the diff to see if you have some metal particulates. That could confirm the bad bearing theory.
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Old 10-13-2009, 11:40 AM   #7
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I have the same identical problem. My dealer says they wont do anything because of my lift. The problem did start as soon as I raised it. I have Billstein 5100 shocks set at 2.5" I am thinking about moving them to 1.75" to see if that makes a difference. I'm really tired of the vibration and growling!!
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Old 10-13-2009, 12:30 PM   #9
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jshaw, i've been reading on a few different forums and there seems to be several people with the same symptoms after installing a lift. My friend had his differential replaced under warranty with a homemade lift kit installed, I suggest going to a different dealership. My truck is a work truck and I can live with it making funny noises, as long as it doesn't leave me stranded. I'd like to know what is causing the "growling", gears or bearings and will it get worse or just stay the same.
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Old 10-13-2009, 07:31 PM   #10
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I have a new 09 with a 3" lift. I put the lift and wheels and tires on at 2500 miles. My truck now has 14000 miles. I have not had any problems until I rotated my tires for the second time last week. Since then i get the same "growling" sound, it seems to be more evident at 35-45mph. However it does not do it all the time, but the majority of the time. I had my truck in for service at toyota last week and informed them about the problem, they thought it was a balancing problem and they balanced the tires, but this did not change anything.
I'm waiting to hear back from Toyota to see if they are going to do the spring TSB. Hopefully they will... My service adviser called yesterday and said they have not heard anything yet about the TSB, but I did inform him about this noise continuing. So next time I bring it in I'm going to have them look at it again to see what they find out.
I'll keep you guys informed if I find anything out.
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Old 10-15-2009, 09:06 AM   #11
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Differential axle bearing

I got underneath my truck today and my axle has a lot of play right where it comes out of the differential. This is only on the driver's side. I presume this is the problem. I should have my truck in the shop next week and I will let Toyota know, and see what they say. I hope I won't get the run around because of my lift, but know that's probably what's going to happen. This don't seem to be a very common problem with people on here, so maybe it is just a faulty part? I have only had the 3" lift on my truck for like 12000 miles, and my truck only has 14000 miles. Hopefully they will fix it, if not I'll fix it myself.

What happened with you Patrick0625 did you find anything out?
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Old 10-15-2009, 09:29 AM   #12
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Dr.D,

My axle is the same way on the driver's side. A lot more play than I would think it should have. I found this last week but haven't had time to go to a different dealer. The next closest one is an hour away and I will be out of town this weekend and part of next week. Please update us on what you find out and I will do the same after I have mine looked at. Mine has had this growling and vibration issue since installing the lift back in February and it seems to be getting worse which is what really scares me.
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Old 10-15-2009, 12:15 PM   #13
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I read on another forum about someone with the same problem. They put a rubber band around the front drive shaft to keep it from free turning. I just tried this and there is no more growling noise. The "buzzing" in the steering wheel is a little better but still not smooth like when you put the truck in 4x4. I have a long trip this weekend so will update next week on whether the growling comes back and todays test drive was just a fluke. Of course this is not a fix but does it help explain what may be causing the problem to anyone? I am like Dr. D and think it has something to do with all the play where the drivers axle goes into the diff. If you immobilze the front drive shaft do the front axles still turn? If they do then this could still be the problem but if not then it may be something else.
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Old 10-15-2009, 06:55 PM   #14
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I weird thing about this problem to me is that it started right after I rotated my tires. I guess this could have been just a pure coincidence? jshaw the axles or "cv shaft" do turn at all times when the truck is moving, not sure about immobilizing the drive shaft. I don't understand what your talking about with the drive shaft.

I didn't mention it earlier but mine is the same also when it's in 4x4, it 100% stops which leads me to believe it's in the driveline, but there's no telling it could be a wheel bearing. I did read in another thread that many other guys have had their trucks in for this axle slop and many people said their dealer and other mechanic's said this is normal? It just don't seem normal to me especially since my driver's side is so much worse then the passenger side.

I also get a little pop every now and then like patrick described above. The sound it produces sounds like something is loose. I have some good news. My dealer called me today and approved the spring TSB on my 09. So i'll have my truck in next week for the spring TSB, this growling sound problem, and they are putting a new stereo in my truck because I get a little static in my passenger speaker weather the radio is on or off.
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Old 10-20-2009, 07:05 PM   #15
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Well guys I don't really have any real helpful info. for ya even after getting my truck back today. Ok so they put the new TSB springs on, and for some reason this made the growling sound go away? I don't understand it, but I can't get the noise to start up again even going back and forth from 4 wheel drive to 2 wheel drive like I could before. I had the master mechanic look it over and he said the play or "slop" at the CV shaft is within the normal range even though the driver's side moves so much more. He said my CV joints were in good shape too. This is puzzling to me why the noise stopped. Also they did not do the alignment on the TSB because I have the aftermarket wheels. He said they couldn't get their alignment unit on on my wheels and didn't want to damage them.

So really the only change is the rear ride height. It was around 38 3/4, now it is 40 inches from the ground to the bottom of the fender. Really I don't know what to say, but I'm glad the noise stopped. By the way I have a 3" lift in the front and a 2" block in the back. Before I had the TSB done the back-end was roughly a 0.5 inch lower then the front, now the back is 1 1/4 higher. Maybe this transfered some weight to the front and is helping to keep something more stable? I don't know?
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Old 10-21-2009, 08:13 AM   #16
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This mystery gets even stranger. I have airbags on the rear of my truck so I could raise the rear and see if it helps mine. Do you still have the "buzzing" in the steering wheel or did it go away as well?
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Old 10-21-2009, 03:54 PM   #17
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After driving it today I noticed I do get a slight bit of noise, but to me this sounds like its the tires, it's similar to before, but different. The buzzing in the steering wheel is 98% gone, along with the buzzing sensation in the pedals. I think this sound we're getting has something to do with the tires. I have the 285/70R17 BFG A/T don't know what you have, but really I think all along this has something to do with the tires or lift that's what the toyota mechanic said too. Again, mine never did it for the first 12000 miles after my truck was lifted. It was just after I rotated the tires the second time. I typically rotate every 6000 miles. You might try also rotating your tires and see if this helps.
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Old 10-22-2009, 02:49 PM   #18
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Growling noise...

I had the growling coming from my front end as well. I thought it could be in the gearing because it mainly made the noise when I accelerated. After diagnosing it I found the front wheel bearings were bad due to my oversize tires. As soon as I replaced the bearing she was rolling stealth again. Probably not the CV's, most likely the same as I had.
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Old 10-22-2009, 05:39 PM   #19
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Mine started as soon as I lifted it. I have had Mickey Thompson ATZ Radials and now have Firestone Destination AT's and the noise and growling was the same with both. I did raise the rear end with by air bags yesterday and it did seem to decrease the vibration and growling which leads me to believe it is an driveline angle issue. If it was a bad wheel bearing or a tire issue I don't know why it would completely stop when put in 4x4.
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Old 11-12-2009, 11:17 AM   #20
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I wanted to let you guys know that the noise did not do away like I thought it did once the new springs were installed. It is real annoying, and starting to piss me off. Didn't know if you all had found anything out, or had any new answers since it's been awhile.
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