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Discussion Starter #1
Hi

My year 2000 156 1.8TS makes lots of sqeaking/groaning noises from the front suspension; particularly it seems, first thing in the morning. I've heard lots of times that 'they all do that' so haven't been too worried about it, but is this likely to constitute an MOT failure?

The car feels very taught round corners and there's no knocking noises - it just sounds like some ball joints are very dry. I've pulled on both from wheels and there's no noticeable play in either.

I'm asking this now because I've not had the car long and absolutely love it, but it does need some bits done to it, and I don't want to go paying out too much tarting it up if it's going to need uneconomic suspension work when it's MOT comes round in December.

Any help appreciated
John.
 

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No not necessarily. depends on many factors, why not have it looked at by an mot station for few quid?. Mine has gone quiet in the hot weather after previously squeaking a bit on speed bumps, despite being fairly new and oem parts - passed the mot this very day!.
 

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Squeaking is not an MOT failure.

My upper wishbones squeaked for years before there was actually any movement to get close to being an MOT issue.
 

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Gadj has just about got it - mine squeak a little on cold mornings and last year got an advisory of dry upper joints. Well, like any school report they have to have a little negative word somewhere.

They'll be looking for split ball joint rubbers and movement in any of the joints. If you are confident enough to, jack up a front corner and rock the wheel 12 and 6 o'clock and feel/look for movement.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thanks guys; is there any point greasing anywhere while the wheels are off the ground? If so, where (sorry, I'm a complete novice when it comes to all things mechanical)?
 

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Not really any grease point's and greasing the outside won't make much difference but some people do inject silicone grease or whatever into bushes to extend life and stop the squeaks, not sure if it does any good but will probably make it quieter.
 

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The creaking is not limited to Alfas....in the last few years I've had 2 Saabs that creaked and my current race car (a 1977 Skoda no less) also creaks.....a good squirt of WD40 sorts it short term but there are many reasons why it might be doing it. It's definitely not an MOT fail on its own (the Skoda has brand new bushes and still creaks after prolonged dry weather and no use)
 

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Discussion Starter #8
I've just had a look under my car and found that the gaiter on the drive shaft has a dirty great split in it, and there's a bit of play in the joint. Presumably I'm looking at a driveshaft replacement - is this an expensive job (I don't have the skill to do it myself). It's the o/s on a 2000 1.8TS.

Thanks
John.
 

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I've just had a look under my car and found that the gaiter on the drive shaft has a dirty great split in it, and there's a bit of play in the joint. Presumably I'm looking at a driveshaft replacement - is this an expensive job (I don't have the skill to do it myself). It's the o/s on a 2000 1.8TS.

Thanks
John.
how do you mean a bit of play in the joint? not just the shaft moving in/out of the joint?

just put a new gaitor on, about £5, and obviously re-grease but they always come with the grease.
 

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You should only need a CV joint if there is excessive play....go on EBay - a whole kit with boot will only be about £30. If the joint is worn you would normally hear clicking when you go round corners
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Thanks guys - there's no clicking going round corners, but if I grab the shaft and wobble it, there seems to be some play; ie: it doesn't feel as if the CV joint is a tight fit. Maybe it's supposed to be like that? Peter, the £30 kit is just for the CV joint - I don't need to replace the whole drive shaft?

Thankyou for being patient with me - I'm keen to learn, but am a complete novice!
 

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My old Honda Civic 2002 1.6 Vtec front suspension used to squeak loads during the winter and not at all during the summer. it was a very common issue with them, itd sound like something was about to drop off when going over speed bumps sometimes!

It never failed an MOT because of it and it was given a clean bill of health my mechanics
 

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Agreed. My 147 just had it's MOT today and one of the problems was creaking front suspension, which turned out to be some slight play with the driver's side upper wishbone. The garage simply added it to the VOSA sheet as an advisory item.

gadj said pretty much exactly what the garage told me today. :thumbs:
 

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For your driveshaft - if one of the gaitors is split, just replace it as others have said. Part is cheap but it's a bit of a hassle to do. The driveshaft should have some amount of play but not much - it's hard to know whether the movement you describe is normal or not. If you don't get any clicking when turning on full lock then it's probably fine. If one of the cv joints is worn, probably easiest to get a s/h complete driveshaft from a scrap car and fit that.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
I've had another look, and think the drive shaft is alright, so I just need a new rubber gaiter. There doesn't seem to be any play in the upper or lower wishbones either, so hopefully they're ok as well. I did find one problem though - the metal valve covers on both front wheels are welded on so tight that I can't get them off! Not a problem until I need to put air in the tyres! I guess a trip to a Tyre Fitters to get new valves is on the cards at some stage though.

Thanks for all your help.
 
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Some of those caps had a small Allen key bolt in the side of cap to stop people nicking them.
They should have been fitted with a smear of grease so they don't seize if you put them back on. Try wrapping a piece of thick rag round the neck and hold with a pair of grips/pliers.
If they have they hex head on the cap try a small spanner or socket just make sure you hold the neck . ;)
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Thanks gibot123 - unfortunately they haven't got the allen key bolt on them. I have already tried using a spanner on the cap, while trying to hold the valve stem with a pair of pliers, but they're so tight that I'm in danger of wrecking the valve stem.
 

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For the squeak I suggest you pop down Halfrauds and buy a can of red silicone grease (in an aerosol can). Liberally spray all the upper, lower and drop-link bushes. That should get rid of the noise for a while, repeat the process about once a month and all should be well.
If you want a more long term solution then you can chase the bushes out and apply the grease directly to them but, for me, spraying them works fine and only takes a couple of minutes.
 
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Only other thing I can suggest is to drill a small hole in top of cap and use a releasing spray,that wat you will get round the suction effect and hopefully be able to remove rather than replacing the valves.
(When did you last check your pressures) ;)
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Only other thing I can suggest is to drill a small hole in top of cap and use a releasing spray,that wat you will get round the suction effect and hopefully be able to remove rather than replacing the valves.
(When did you last check your pressures) ;)
That's a good idea - I'll give it a go; thanks! I've only had the car a couple of months and must admit I'm a bit lax about checking the pressures, other than the visual check that they're still round!

I've looked up that silicon grease Tommywho156; it's on my 'shopping list' now.
 
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