'97 Grand Voyager Front End Noises?

Voyager97

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Joined
Mar 19, 2022
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Just looking for some advice on a creaking/popping noise in the front end of my 97 Plymouth 3.3. Had a mechanic diagnose bad sway bar bushings back in the summer. Got the van back, was quiet and tight for a little while. He put new end links in as well. Noticed a clunk about a month ago. Swapped out the Moog bushings he put in, for Mopar, PN 4684890. Figured the OEM's lasted around 120k, new set should last the same. Noticed some wear and internal tearing on the "new", Moogs as well. Took van for test drive, everything sounded good with mopar bushings. Second day of driving the van, heard some, "creaking", and, "popping", like noises, only when backing out of bumpy driveway, coming to a stop, slow short road bumps, backing up while turning, and slowly pulling out forwards while turning. Heavier body roll, and most normal driving all sounds good and tight. Mopar bushings were installed as per service manual. Ball joints and tie rod ends feel tight, but they are original. Van has 126k miles.


Monroe, "economatic", struts have likely somewhere around 20 or 30k miles on them. After doing comparisons with another 97 Grand Voyager 3.3, that has Amazon struts, noticed my van does seem like it dives some, body roll is heavier, stops harder, and has a harsher ride. I guess I could say they feel worse than the Amazons They don't really feel, "shot", but I'm beginning to believe they struts are the culprit/may be wearing out. I am reading that the, "economatic", struts are just plain garbage. I also did a fair deal of towing quads with the van, may have added extra wear and tear to the struts.

I'm planning on replacing struts/end links anyway, oddly enough, seems I bought a pair of the Monroe, "Quick-Strut", for the other van, and didn't put them on..

Any thoughts on the noises? I mean, it is an old Chrysler minivan, weird noises happen with old cars, I get that. It's nothing serious, but, this van is my pride and joy, I like to take extra good care of it.


Thanks guys 👍




P.S, any recommendations on sway bar end links? Reading around, tells me most everything is, "junk", even the more reputable brands, like Moog. If the pricey-er brands are just as crappy as say O'Reilly brand, I don't have the desire to spend more for a, "better", brand.
 
Joined
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I've had 4 of these vans. I really can't hear anything clearly on your video but I'll share what I have learned.

The sway bar bushings should be installed with the front wheels supporting the weight of the vehicle and should last 50,000 miles or more.

The end links fail often and are easy to check with a pry bar, just makes sure both wheels [suspension arms] are compressed the same amount when checking.

Original ball joints last between 170,000 - 215,000 miles or at least they did for me.
Monroe Premium Quick struts for this van make a terrible noise when the temp is below 40F.

I've seen the top of the strut break through the top strut bearing, Open the hood and rock the front end while looking at the top of the strut.

The strut towers rust on these vans, spray the area with rust preventive oil.

Sure it's not the back? Loose shock mounts can make a lot of noise on small bumps at low speed.
 

Voyager97

Thread starter
Joined
Mar 19, 2022
Messages
13
I've had 4 of these vans. I really can't hear anything clearly on your video but I'll share what I have learned.

The sway bar bushings should be installed with the front wheels supporting the weight of the vehicle and should last 50,000 miles or more.

The end links fail often and are easy to check with a pry bar, just makes sure both wheels [suspension arms] are compressed the same amount when checking.

Original ball joints last between 170,000 - 215,000 miles or at least they did for me.
Monroe Premium Quick struts for this van make a terrible noise when the temp is below 40F.

I've seen the top of the strut break through the top strut bearing, Open the hood and rock the front end while looking at the top of the strut.

The strut towers rust on these vans, spray the area with rust preventive oil.

Sure it's not the back? Loose shock mounts can make a lot of noise on small bumps at low speed.
Apologize for the sound quality on video. I'll take another one, with better audio.

Sway bar bushings were replaced with front of van up on jackstands, not sure how I'd even get under there with tires on the ground.. Lol.

Temp is above 40°F here in CT now, but will be winter again soon enough.. That being said, started noticing noise when it was colder, matter of fact.

I tested the struts a few times, in different locations, by pushing van up and down from engine bay, and sounded like passenger side strut mount or bearing was making popping/clunking noise, but only made that noise once out of the few times I tried it. Odd.

Definitely sounds like the front, but I'll check the rear shocks.
 
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