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Weird Car Noises and What They Can Mean

Your car is always giving you feedback, but are you listening? Apart from a car’s usual noises, have you been hearing something additional or unusual? Strange noises can be indicative of many things. It’s hard to pinpoint an exact cause for strange car noises without bringing your car into an auto repair shop. But to get you started, here are some of the most common car noises and what they could mean. 

Humming Noise When Accelerating

While driving, if you hear a low-pitched hum when accelerating, it could be indicative of problems with your wheel bearings. This low humming noise that gets louder the more you accelerate is often mistaken as engine noise. But one way to tell where the noise is coming from is by watching your RPM gauge. As you accelerate, the RPM and speed gauge rise. But once you start cruising at a set speed and take your foot off the pedal, the RPM gauge should drop. If the noise continues after the RPM gauge has dropped, it means the noise is certainly not coming from the engine. 

Screeching Sound Under the Hood

Screeching sounds under the hood are usually caused by a loose or worn serpentine belt. Your serpentine belt drives several vital pieces of equipment in your car, including the alternator, water pump, power steering pumps, air conditioning compressor, and radiator fan. When an old serpentine belt snaps, drive torque to all of the engine’s accessories is lost and your car won’t move. That means if the screeching sound under the hood is caused by a loose or worn serpentine belt, you should bring your car into an AZ auto repair shop immediately. 

Squealing Noises When You Brake 

If you hear squealing noises when you press on the brake pedal, it usually means that the brake pad has worn down to the point that the metal is rubbing against the rotor. While this sound is usually not an immediate emergency, it means that you should have your brake pads replaced as soon as possible. Otherwise, you risk damaging your car’s rotors and need to spend additional money to have the entire brake system repaired. In a worst-case scenario, your brakes will fail while driving.

Chugging or Rattling Noises 

The most common cause of chugging or rattling noises in a car is exhaust system problems. A damaged exhaust system can produce a multitude of noises that each indicate something different. But some of its most common noises, like chugging or rattling, often mean that there’s a blockage somewhere in the system or that the exhaust system is out of alignment. Bring your vehicle to a Phoenix, AZ auto mechanic to identify the problem.

Leave it to Thunderbird Automotive Specialists 

When your car makes strange noises, there’s nowhere better to go to have it resolved than Thunderbird Automotive Specialists. As a trusted Phoenix, Arizona auto repair shop, we’ve helped many Arizona drivers with their car problems and can help you get your car back to normal quickly. 

Click here to schedule an appointment, or call us at (866) 447-0803 to talk to one of our auto repair technicians. 

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Thunderbird Automotive Specialists will be closed on Friday, October 20th.

During this time, our team will be attending the memorial service for our late General Manager, Brock Lohman.

We appreciate your understanding and support as we gather as a Thunderbird Automotive Specialist family to honor Brock’s life and legacy.

We will be back open to serve you on Monday, October 23rd. Thank you for your patience and cooperation.