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Old 08-13-2011, 09:46 PM   #1
moresaturn is on a distinguished road
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Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Port Huron, MI
Posts: 177

1998 SC1
Default Wheel Bearing Going Bad?

Long time no post on my part, but I happy to say that my Saturn has been treating me well for the past 3 years. Unfortunately, I have had a new issue arise, and I would like to ask the forum what they think my issue is.

Background on the car:
1998 SC1
Manual Trans
Alloy Wheels
Power Steering
Spoiler (this is all of the options)

225K on the clock, all of the standard Maintenance Items have been replaced, and my only current engine code is 420, which is due to my not replacing my Cat, something I plan to do.

The issue I have been having is very odd. I recently swapped purchased and swapped tires onto my car, since I had a set of drag radials on my car (joking, very bald all seasons).

On the way home after the swap I notice a loud tire noise when the windows were up and sunroof closed coming from the front passenger side (wheel). It was raining and not obnoxious, so I noted it and went home, thinking it was an issue my car needing an alignment.

This was last weekend. Throughout this week, I was driving and this noise is not going away. After some experiments, I noticed the sound is proportionally as loud as the speed all the way to 70 mph. One other odd thing I noticed was that at 55 or any speed above 25 for that matter, if I turn the wheel to the left about 5 degrees, the noise abruptly stops.

This lead me to believe that it is the wheel bearing. So today I took of the wheel and tire to expose the rotor. I removed the caliper and the rotor to take a better look at the wheel bearing, and I was not able to move the bearing any way (in, out, or side to side).

I am puzzled as to what this is, but I have had several people tell me that the sound is indeed coming from my front right, and a vibration can now be felt in the floorboard.

Is this simply the bearing? Any other thoughts on what the problem might be?

1994 SL2 - 24 Hours of Lemons Racecar
1998 SC1 - 305K miles - dead
2001 SC1 - 349K miles and counting - 1 quart per 1K miles - stock engine
Just another OEM engineer...
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Old 08-13-2011, 10:19 PM   #2
silvergagt04 is on a distinguished road
Join Date: Feb 2011
Location: Milwaukee WI
Posts: 117

2001 SC2
Default Re: Wheel Bearing Going Bad?

Sounds like a wheel bearing. You must confirm with the car on jackstands and the tires turning and use a long screwdriver and listen to each and replace the loudest one.
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wheel bearing

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