The old clunking noise saga - Ford Powerstroke Diesel Forum
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Old 02-20-2013, 04:52 PM
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The old clunking noise saga

Well yall helped me alot when I re-sealed the top end of my 7.3, now I'm onto the next problem of annoyance, the front end clunking on a 2002. So far today I have replaced the swaybar bushings with Prothane bushings. What a pain to press out the end links but thankfully I have a 12ton press and it worked well. I test drove the truck and while it is quieter it still has that clunking noise (just not anywhere as frequent or as loud as before). I have ordered all new spring pads to replace both front and rear (16 total) and they are due in any day. They should help some but I'm starting to think it could be the track bar bushngs or the spring and shackle bushings. This is one of those things I will keep replacing parts on till she is quet like a newer truck. Any tips and advice? I have 3" blocks in the front and rear and it does not have a track bar drop bracket. Was thinking about getting a new adjustable one of those. Should I do that and the spring and shackle bushings at the same time? I was thinking about doing the rear but really if I drop the rear springs I want to run that R4teck air ride system at that point so why waste money though new bushings are not that expensive.... It will be a while before I have the funds saved up for that system. Any thoughts welcome.
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Old 02-21-2013, 11:56 AM
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First thought DITCH THE FRONT BLOCKS AND BUY 4" LIFT SPRINGS!

Second thought, a track bar drop bracket and a dropped pitman arm. If you're not wanting to do that, then a longer track bar. Either way, that 3" inch lift (cough cough) is pushing the axle down, but the track bar moves in an arc, therefore, it is now fighting the leaf springs. I'm thinking the bracket/pitman arm option will be about as much as the longer track bar. Oh yeah, you can't just do the track bar bracket because the track bar and drag link need to be at the same angle.

Third thought, ditch those blocks and get some 4" lift springs....or some 2" lift springs/leveling kit and a hanger kit....or anything other than blocks for the front.
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Old 02-21-2013, 12:17 PM
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Im not going to ditch the blocks at this time. They have been on there for 12 years and I have no known issues, I think it is more hysteria than actual fact based opinion but thats another story.. I do however plan on getting new 4" springs up front when I get the R4tech for the rear. I just do not have the funds at this time after spending 2k on the top end. My only fear of 4" springs is a harsher ride in the front. I have done some talking with the R4tech designer in the past about a similar front suspension but using the firestone air springs and dropping the front spring pack to the single main leaf and plumbing in a ride height valve. I am extremely familiar with air ride from my business (I own a small trucking company) and after looking at the keldeman system that is exactly what they do but they are way over priced. Not trying to start a debate about blocks but again, I have never seen them fail if installed properly. I also forgot to add that the blocks are bolted to the spring packs.
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Old 02-21-2013, 12:32 PM
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Re: The old clunking noise saga

I have annoying front end clunk and rattle on my 99 with a 4 inch lift. I am replacing shocks and any bushings that look like they need replaced.
i can't tell if i have a new track bar bracket, I'll have to compare it with a stock truck. If not I'll add an adjustable bar or drop bracket.

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Old 02-21-2013, 12:51 PM
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Update: I did alot more driving that just down my driveway and the heavy clunking is gone. On the road hitting small chuck holes or reflectors she is quiet. The slight clunking noise (very muffled) can only be heard at very low speeds on a rough road. I'm certain that my new spring pads will help quiet the noise transfer even more. I found out that if you can see daylight on both sides of the spring pad the pads are ok, if you cannot, they are garbage and its time to replace. Mine I can not see any light at those locations. As soon as the new pads arrive and I get them installed I will update again. Im still thinking about doing the spring bushings due to the mileage and age of the truck, the rubber bushings on the torsion bar were showing signs of dry rot and where very soft.
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Old 02-22-2013, 06:30 PM
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My package of new spring pads arrived in the mail today so my plans in the morning are to drive a wedge between each leaf and pull out whats left of the old pads and replace with the new. If my brain doesn't forget something between now and then I will take some pics of before, after and during as well as some measurements to see if this little pad changes ride height or anything. I got my new tires on today BFG KM2 LT315 75R 16 and so far so good. The first 100 miles was a little awkward, the truck just didn't feel sure footed going in a straigh line, like it was squirming a little but the tires seem to have settled, and they handle pretty good. Noise was about half again louder than the ATKO they replaced but still not too loud to bother me. Roll up the windows and turn on the tunes and yo dont hear them at all.
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Old 02-22-2013, 06:40 PM
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Old 02-22-2013, 07:25 PM
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Re: The old clunking noise saga

What are these spring pads you are talking about? Do they come installed between the individual leaves?

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Old 02-22-2013, 07:30 PM
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Yes, they are round nylon bushings with a tit and sit at the end of each leaf. I will post up some pics in the am. Ford wanted $14.00 each and I counted 16 to do front and rear, found them on ebay for 0.99 ea and $5.00 shipping.
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Old 02-22-2013, 07:42 PM
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Re: The old clunking noise saga

Wow, don't know how i missed them. I've lifted several super Duty trucks and don't remember seeing anything like that. I'll be interested to see the pics. I'll start out replacing the sway bar bushings then take a look at what you are talking about

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