The Ford Freestyle was a crossover utility vehicle that preceded the Taurus X

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Ford Taurus 1999 SE Loud grinding noise on front driver side?

Hello iFixit community, I have a 1999 Ford Taurus SE, and about a month ago I hit a pothole, (I live in Michigan where the roads are horrible) and I think that I may have messed up my CV axle. There is a loud grinding/humming noise on the left front side of my car, which leads me to believe it is the CV axle, can anybody let me know if you think its something else? I don't want to buy the axle and have that not be the issue, I have little availability to bring it to a shop, as I am a student and work 30 hours a week... Thank you!

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Potholes, are notorious for destroying cars.

In saying that, it could be a few things. You may have fragged your bearing. To check it, a rule of thumb is to grab your tyre (tire) at the 10 and 2 o'clock position and rock if forward and backward. If you feel actual play and not tyre roll, then your bearings will need replacement. Then grasping it by the 9 and 3 o'clock positions, do the same thing. If you feel excessive play or slop, most likely your tie rods for your steering has either failed or become loose. Next thing to do is, on the front left side of your vehicle, place both hands on your mudguard (fender) and bounce the car up and down about five times and abruptly let it go, it should bounce once then settle. If it continues to bounce longer than this or feels really sloppy when doing the bounce test your suspension is on its way out.

Lastly jack up your car and take off the road wheel, then chock it up so if it falls it won't fall on you. Usually just sticking the wheel under the car and letting it down a bit will suffice. Check your struts for leaks, and wear. Also check your tie rod arms. They come off the steering rack, and connect to the swivel hub. Check those for excessive play or cracked or torn bellows (the rubber bag). Then check your drive shaft for excessive play, if in gear or park and it should be if you've just jacked it up. Grab it and rotate it forward and back there should be just a small amount of movement. Then check your CV bellows for cracks or splits or leakage. Next check your sway bar and mounts for damage or loose mounting rubbers.

Grab your disk rotor, at the 12 and 6 position, move it back and forth to again check your bearing, if no play then most likely what you felt before was the tyres rolling. Go again to the 9 & 3 position and rock back and forth watching the tie rod ends and listen for odd noises. As it could be your steering rack.

Never trust vibrations coming through your steering wheel, as there are a billion reasons why that could happen.

Last but not least check your engine mounts for cracks and leaks. Then before you put your wheel back on, give it a thorough check too. Look for cracks, or egg shaped bulges in your tyres, gouges in the sidewalls of your tyres. Check that there are weights attached to your wheel rim, as no wheel is ever correct. If there are none and you see evidence of the weight missing you may need to have your wheels rebalanced.

Also remember this golden rule. What you do to one side, always do to the other. It is best not to replace just the broken or worn item. As a general rule, everything wears at the same rate. Just because your left bearing might be shot and your right one may be OK, best to get it replaced also, as has extra stress on it.

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Thank you so much! When I get a free moment from the chaos of work and school I will do these things, you certainly know your cars! Thanks!

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When you're young, you don't have money to pay for someone else to fix your stuff. So you learn to do it yourself! That pretty much sums up my youth.

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