RATTLE, CLATTER

  • Tiny
  • Scary
  • 1995 Ford Thunderbird
  • 40,000 miles

I hear a rattle/clatter/klunking sound coming from the rear of my 95 T Bird. The sounds start as soon as the car is moving and gets worse when driving on rough roads. When driving on smooth roads the sounds stop. My T Bird has only 40,000 miles on it and has been serviced according to Fords service schedule.

Any help would be appreciated.

Thanks

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Friday, April 26th, 2013 AT 1:12 AM

4 Replies

  • Tiny
  • caradiodoc
  • Expert
  • 25,616 posts

The most common suspects are probably the shock absorbers and bushings, and anti-sway bar links if it has a rear anti-sway bar. Broken exhaust hangers can let the pipe hit the body too. You may be able to identify that by pushing on the tail pipe. If there's nothing obvious, have the brakes checked. Automatic adjusters and springs can rust apart and rattle around inside the drum.

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Friday, April 26th, 2013 AT 2:07 AM
  • Tiny
  • Scary
  • Member

Thank you caradiodoc for the effort you made answering my post. Your suggestions all sound reasonable and give me a place to start. In fact I just looked under my T Bird and found both exhaust seemed pretty tight and when I shook them I couldn't reproduce the rattle sound. As soon as I can I'll get under the car and take a closer look.

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Friday, April 26th, 2013 AT 9:10 AM
  • Tiny
  • Scary
  • Member

Caradiodoc

After your suggestions I got down under my TBird for a up close look. Just like you said! "Anti-sway bar links".

Both anti-sway bar links are missing the (I'll call them rubber isolators). As soon as I pushed on one I immediately recognized the sound.

Is it normal for those isolators to fall out at 45,000 miles?

Add the Ford T Bird to your expertise list.

Hopefully I can just replace the isolators.

Thanks again for your help.

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Saturday, April 27th, 2013 AT 11:15 AM
  • Tiny
  • caradiodoc
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  • 25,616 posts

It's not so much the mileage as it is the age. The rubber deteriorates just like an old rubber band. The bushings will split, then crack apart. They come with the new link and aren't very expensive. You can reuse the old metal link but most of the time the nut on the end is rusted tight and the stud twists off.

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Saturday, April 27th, 2013 AT 4:18 PM

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