Front suspension noisy when driving - turns out it's the headlights

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dcdttu

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#1
Hello all. I've had my Model 3 since August 2018 and have noticed the front suspension is a bit noisy. When going over sharp-enough bumps, the suspension will make little popping noises and sound/feel loose, like there's something under there that isn't quite tight enough or something. The rear suspension is utterly silent and other cars I drive don't do this. I took it to Tesla and drove a MR Model 3 there and it actually seemed to have the same problem/noise, but can't imagine this being the desired behavior.

I've never had a car where it's normal for the front suspension to feel loose and make noise like my Model 3 does. Anyone else have this issue?

(Additionally, if I go up a driveway or over a speed bump (slowly!) at an angle, the front suspension tends to make a noticeable noise when I do so - like a bushing or something is giving)
 

garsh

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#2
Take it to a service center and have them take a look. Something may indeed be loose, and a little tightening may be all you need.
 

dcdttu

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#3
Take it to a service center and have them take a look. Something may indeed be loose, and a little tightening may be all you need.
I've taken it twice, unfortunately. The first time they said it was normal and the second time we drove a MR Model 3 and it had a similar noise when hitting bumps. I just can't believe that a suspension this noisy is on purpose. Does yours make noise when hitting bumps?
 

PNWmisty

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#4
I've taken it twice, unfortunately. The first time they said it was normal and the second time we drove a MR Model 3 and it had a similar noise when hitting bumps. I just can't believe that a suspension this noisy is on purpose. Does yours make noise when hitting bumps?
We have two Model 3's that we drive on a lot of rough backroads and they are both completely solid when hitting bumps, no clunks, clicks or hollow sounding thumps. Just quiet and solid feeling.
 

dcdttu

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#5
We have two Model 3's that we drive on a lot of rough backroads and they are both completely solid when hitting bumps, no clunks, clicks or hollow sounding thumps. Just quiet and solid feeling.
I figured, thanks! A mobile technician is coming tomorrow to replace the accelerator - I'm going to have them look at it. It definitely makes all kinds of noise on bumpy roads, mostly on the left side.
 

garsh

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#6
I've taken it twice, unfortunately. The first time they said it was normal and the second time we drove a MR Model 3 and it had a similar noise when hitting bumps.
Ugh. I hate it when something like that gets dismissed.

Hopefully some perseverance on your part will get it solved. Please update us with how the mobile service goes.
 

Scrutmonkey

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#7
DCDTTU, maybe take a video and post it up. I'm curious but I don't have any crazy noises on bumps in my car VIn 008XXX
 
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#8
I figured, thanks! A mobile technician is coming tomorrow to replace the accelerator - I'm going to have them look at it. It definitely makes all kinds of noise on bumpy roads, mostly on the left side.
Did this fix the issue for you? I've had the same issue and taken it into the service center multiple times. Each time they've said it was normal but I find it hard to believe. Every resolution has been to examine the suspension and retorque. Haven't been able to fix yet.
 
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13004

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#9
Not all SCs are created equal and not all Rangers are created equal, so you may consider trying a different SC if at all feasible. Have the techs give your 3 a thorough check up with both the suspension unloaded and loaded as some failing parts are difficult to troubleshoot when the suspension is unloaded. I doubt it is an premature internal dampener failure since the loaner exhibited the same issue.

Good luck.
 

DanSz

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#10
It’s usually the stabilizer link ends. Retorque or replace. Good luck!
 

dcdttu

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#12
Update - still making the noise. I had mobile repair tighten the suspension components, not sure what they adjusted specifically though. Noise still there. They always tell me it's normal whether I take it to the shop or mobile, but I just can't see Tesla making a car with a noisy suspension that's mostly on the driver's side... normal.

Also, I went out of town for 5 days recently and didn't drive my car. When i got back, the car didn't make the noise at all for 2 full days and then it started slowly coming back. That *can't* be normal.

I guess back to the Service Center we go - for the 4th time. It's getting kinda annoying.
 

BlueMeanie

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#13
August 2018 purchase June 2018 build. We too have that annoying front suspension sound over certain bumps. Also been told it's normal. Please let me know if you find a fix!
 

oats

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#14
I'm taking my car into the service center again in May. It's gotten to the point where I cringe whenever there are bumps on the road and purposely steer away from them so I don't hear the rattles...
 

dcdttu

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#15
I think I figured it out. I was cleaning up my car after Austin had some crazy storms this weekend (the oak tree pollen all dumped at once) and was really trying to figure out why my car, and others I've driven, seem to have an overly-noisy front suspension when going over smaller/sharper bumps.....and so I took my fist and starting lightly tapping on the bumper and front panels.

As soon as I tapped near the driver's side headlight, the entire headlight housing rattled. LOUD. It sounded exactly like what I was hearing while driving. I then tried the passenger side, which rattled but not as easily - it took a harder tap. This made sense as I always told Tesla that the sound seemed to mostly come from the driver's side, sometimes the passenger side.

I have an appointment on the 22nd to show them the root cause, and am about 90% certain this is the culprit.

Also, every Model 3 I've driven, be it a friend's that was made in 2018 to a brand new MR at the service center, exhibited this rattle I hear. You might want to test it yourself by using your fist to lightly tap on and around the light housing and see if it rattles. You'll know quickly as it rattles quite easily for me.

August 2018 purchase June 2018 build. We too have that annoying front suspension sound over certain bumps. Also been told it's normal. Please let me know if you find a fix!
See above - it seems to be the headlights. You also had your car delivered August 2018, same as me. I wonder if the updated headlight housing isn't as snug as the original or something like that. Either way, I think this is it. Try some of my suggestions mentioned above.
 
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gary in NY

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#17
I fail to understand how a tech can call a "noise" such as yours normal. Do they build these cars to make such a noise? I hardly think so. More likely the tech doesn't have the time to properly troubleshoot the problem, or have the experience/knowledge which would lead to the solution.

Every time I read one of these posts, I check my car for noise. I am delighted to say it is tight and the only noise is from my belongings sliding around under quick acceleration.
 

dcdttu

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#18
Hers's a LINK to watch it via Google Photos - does this work?

If you'll notice, the first light (driver's) is quite noisy, and I don't have to tap it very hard at all to get it to shimmy and shake. Hard to tell in the video, but the noise is pretty darn loud for such light taps. The passenger one, which I do second, is far harder to get to make noise and I have to tap it pretty hard.
 

sandange

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#19
One of those annoying intermittent problems that the SC has difficulty to find.
Thanks for taking the time to chase down where the problem originates from and sharing it with us.
Please pass it on to the SC and hopefully they will share the information to other SCs.
 

TeslaHab

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#20
I've had similar issues from day one with my Model 3: grinding/klunking noise from the front right. I took it in to be looked at in December, they tightened something in the front right suspension but the sound started up again shortly after. I took it in again last week and they are now replacing the upper control arm. Hope that fixes it.

They also discovered that the aero panel under the front of the car was damaged and was rattling so they are replacing it for $600 or so. Joy!

I get to drive a Model X loaner in the meantime, so that's some consolation.