Intermittent click noise from from end - with video | Ford Explorer - Ford Ranger Forums - Serious Explorations

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Intermittent click noise from from end - with video


New Member
May 8, 2019
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Year, Model & Trim Level
1992 Explorer Eddie Bauer
Hey folks,

Hoping to use some collective experience and brainpower to diagnose an issue. I've done extensive searching about clicks and rattles coming from the front end, but nothing that quite describes this. Nothing seems broken, it's just driving me insane. But I finally got it audible on video, here!

What I've noticed and done:
  1. Not dependent on wheel speed, though it's exacerbated by vibrations (see video)
  2. Intermittent, though seemingly seasonal. Seems to be a non-issue in winter months, and in summer months, it comes and goes. Generally goes away whenever I take it to the mechanic or want a friend to hear it, haha.
  3. It's been happening for years. About three years and 10,000+ miles. Been begging for something to break - long road trips, serious 4x4ing, potholes... nothing seems to break and nobody can find anything that looks overly worn. 4x4 high and low all work, alignment is fine, no other symptoms aside from the sound.
  4. In line with above, I've had a lot inspected or repaired over the course of this issue (not trying to fix this specifically, but just general maintenance). Heat shields / dust shields rewelded or tightened, checking loose trim pieces, hubs have been repacked, all t-cases serviced, bearings, and more. If anyone is curious, I digitized all service records here. The only stuff missing is ball joints and other suspension bits. That's my only guess?
Told myself a few years back I'd just wait for something to break and go from there, but since selling my Abarth, this is my DD now. It's embarrassing to click and clack my way past the first green on my way into the golf course in my otherwise cherry Explorer :)



Active Member
July 6, 2018
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City, State
Fife, WA
Year, Model & Trim Level
1992 Mazda Navajo LX
I mean... You kind of answered your own question in a way. Clicking like that is usually suspension-related. My suggestion? Get underneath it with a grease gun and grease anything with a grease fitting. While you do that, make sure the rubber boots are all in tact. If the boots are fine and it continues clicking afterward, then you should take a nice hard look at the U-joints for the front axle and check the "knuckle" behind your wheels. There are ball joints down there that may also need to be greased, but likely won't have stock grease fittings, so they will need to be replaced if they haven't been at some point already, due to the age of the truck. I suggest replacing them with ball joints with grease fittings so you can regularly grease them yourself. It will extend their life span dramatically, and keep your ride noise-free.