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Creaking noise from suspension - resolved!

Aellinsar

Member
Aug 2, 2017
233
201
Ohio
I thought I'd post this here in case anyone else was browsing like I was a week ago looking for a solution. My model 3 started making some creaking noises when going around turns/roundabouts a few weeks ago. It seemed to be coming form the front passenger wheel area. Over a couple weeks to got worse, and came from both front wheels. The noise also happened whenever I turned the steering wheel or went over a speedbump.

I tried lubing pars of the suspension with silicon, but that had minor if any affect. Searching here and elsewhere on Google led me to believe it was likely that the upper control arms needed replaced, and indeed that was the case.

I made an appointment with the Tesla service center about the creaking and it was fixed under warranty. They thought it would take a few days (service center seemed busy), so I had a new model Y as a loaner (it was fun to try out the Y). But it ended up getting fixed the same afternoon. My car is thankfully quiet again!

I know there are a lot of service center complaints on this board, but my experience with the Columbus center couldn't have been better.
 

VT_EE

Active Member
Apr 22, 2017
2,025
2,419
Maryland
FYI-My June 2018 M3 LR RWD need one control are replaced at about 30000 miles. It started making the creaking noise. The new one doesn't have the zip-tied weight on it so they have obviously improved the part.
 
  • Informative
Reactions: untilcomplete

XLR82XS

D M C
Jul 26, 2019
3,109
1,735
SWFL | Vegas
Do you happen to have the part number? The letter at the end of the number has changed over time and represents a superseded part.
Be informative to know which was replaced on your 2018 plus the original number to know how many revisions there have been to date.
 
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Reactions: JT_M3P

VT_EE

Active Member
Apr 22, 2017
2,025
2,419
Maryland
Do you happen to have the part number? The letter at the end of the number has changed over time and represents a superseded part.
Be informative to know which was replaced on your 2018 plus the original number to know how many revisions there have been to date.
The new part they used is:
FR UPR CTRL ARM ASSY, LH(1044321-00-G)
 

Aellinsar

Member
Aug 2, 2017
233
201
Ohio
FYI-My June 2018 M3 LR RWD need one control are replaced at about 30000 miles. It started making the creaking noise. The new one doesn't have the zip-tied weight on it so they have obviously improved the part.

Interesting. Mine is also June 2018 and I'm at ~29,500 miles!

A friend of mine with a February-March 2018 date had his control arms replaced recently as well.
 

Msjulie

Active Member
Jun 26, 2016
2,427
1,738
Monterey Bay Peninsula
Mine is going in Thursday since you hear the groan turning the steering wheel left or right beyond a small off-center amount; 2018 July build. I wonder if that will mean both are swapped and hopefully no grief from aftermarket brake rotors.
 

Justinokay

Member
Aug 6, 2019
15
-4
Seattle
2019 July here. Based on the posts here it looks like this part will always eventually fail. I’m concerned this is a common point of failure in the S,X and now 3. There are aftermarket adjustable control arms that claim to resolve this. Tesla needs to provide a permanent fix or long term solution.
 

untilcomplete

Member
Apr 1, 2017
349
260
East Coast
2019 July here. Based on the posts here it looks like this part will always eventually fail. I’m concerned this is a common point of failure in the S,X and now 3. There are aftermarket adjustable control arms that claim to resolve this. Tesla needs to provide a permanent fix or long term solution.
The solution is to replace is with the updated part. Not aware of any 2020 3s with this issue.
 

Skione65

Active Member
May 5, 2016
1,482
728
Kentucky
Mine is going in Thursday since you hear the groan turning the steering wheel left or right beyond a small off-center amount; 2018 July build. I wonder if that will mean both are swapped and hopefully no grief from aftermarket brake rotors.

@Msjulie,
Do you hear the groan turning the wheel while the car is stationary or rolling/motion? Think I have the same issue.

Ski
 

Msjulie

Active Member
Jun 26, 2016
2,427
1,738
Monterey Bay Peninsula
@Skione65 Mostly stationary or barely moving, like back into the garage and turn the wheel a fair bit to one side or the other

I tried it in a parking lot as well, car not moving and turning wheel not fully lock to lock (it happens before that). I've heard this kind of sound before on much older vehicles and it did tend to be dried out bushings so we'll see what Tesla says. Had to move appointment to next Friday but will report back with whatever they tell me.
 

Msjulie

Active Member
Jun 26, 2016
2,427
1,738
Monterey Bay Peninsula
My understanding is that a groan while turning the steering is normal if you have the front brakes engaged. Groaning while moving is not normal.

There is a case I can get a different sound - stopping on a slight incline, the car adjusted itself and there was a groan. I think that could be brakes, but it's a different sound.

Edit - ok inspired to capture the painful :) sounds on video. It's actually worse in a closed in building.

 
Last edited:

Justinokay

Member
Aug 6, 2019
15
-4
Seattle
The solution is to replace is with the updated part. Not aware of any 2020 3s with this issue.

I’d very much want to believe this is true. However, we still see shudder on 2020 models rolling off the assembly line after a few months of use. If the permanent fix is a part swap, that would have been fixed a long time ago.
 

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