Why Steering Wheel Makes Noise When Turning? (Causes & How to Fix)

by Joshua Thomas

The steering wheel is a crucial component of a car. The part allows the driver to control the vehicle in sharp corners and balance while driving on the highways.

The most incredible thing is that the steering wheel rarely faces problems. Some of the common issues that affect the steering wheel are getting lose, locking up, and producing weird noise.

The good news is that you can fix these steering wheel issues at home. But you need to investigate the problem and take the right course of action.

So, why steering wheel makes noise when turning are dry ball joints, clogged reservoir, worn-out shocks, bad suspension, bad tie rod ends and lower steering fluids.

The article will address some of these issues and outline the roadmap for correction. Take the time to read through and implement the measures depending on the cause.

Why Steering Wheel Makes Noise When Turning? (Causes & How to Fix)
Why Steering Wheel Makes Noise When Turning? (Causes & How to Fix)

Main Reasons for Steering Wheel Makes Noise When Turning

Main Reasons for Steering Wheel Makes Noise When Turning
Main Reasons for Steering Wheel Makes Noise When Turning

Does your car make noise when turning? The issue is an attribute of a problem emanating from the steering wheel and suspension system.

The problem will put you under stress while driving and negotiating corners. Inspecting and identifying the sources of the noise within the steering wheel will be a great decision.

Below are some of the common reasons for noise when turning the steering wheel at low speed, high speed, and normal speed. These reasons include:

Bad Tie Rods

Tie rods usually connects the steering wheel to the rack. The components allow the driver to control the vehicle since the tire direction is managed by the turning of the steering wheel.

The frequent engagement of the tie rods increases the rate of depreciation and getting loose. The good news is that these issues are marked by the clunking noise.

The creaking noise when turning the vehicle implies that the tie rods need replacement. It would be best to check the condition of the tie rods before making the decision.

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Dry Jounce Bushings

Worn-out bushings result in creaking noise when turning the steering wheel. The jounce bushing is located at the top front strut.

The location indicates that the bushing usually experiences a lot of engagement when driving and negotiating corners. The situation subjects the bushing to dryness, cracking, and deterioration.

Failing to correct the groaning sound caused by dry jounce bushings could lead to a more serious problem. Seek assistance from your mechanic since it's something that requires expertise to fix.

Damaged Suspension Bushings

Suspension bushings do experience wear and tear like other components of the vehicle. These parts usually deteriorate, crack, and generate creaking noise when turning the steering wheel.

The part should be checked and corrected with immediate effect. Failure to replace damaged suspension bushings will increase the risk of accidents.

Lower Power Steering Fluids

The steering wheel cannot operate without a power steering fluid. It helps to provide lubrication when turning the steering wheel smoothly.

A leaking reservoir tank will reduce the amount of fluid entering the steering rack to provide the kind of pressure need to turn the wheel smoothly.

Turning the steering wheel will be hard and even produce grinding noise. Always check the level of power steering fluid and top up in case it is low.

Faulty Power Steering Rack

The power steering rack provides the steering rack with hydraulic fluid that enhances the smooth turning of the wheel. A bad power steering rack will limit the supply of fluid and cause grinding noise when turning.

The type of noise is common when turning the car around the corner at a low speed. Involve a car mechanic to help resolve the issue since the grinding and whining noise are irritating.

Worn-out Shocks

Shocks are crucial components in a vehicle. They help in the absorption of vibrations and bumpiness while driving. If the shocks get worn-out, turning the steering wheel will generate noise due to bouncy behavior.

Damaged shocks also make the driving experience poor. The car makes noise when turning and this could be irritating when driving for long-distance.

Clogged Reservoir

The reservoir tank stores power steering fluid and it is present in all vehicles. The hydraulic fluid needs to be kept clean to enhance smooth turning.

But the reservoir is highly susceptible to debris. These materials make the reservoir tank to get clogged and prevent the flow of the steering fluid.

Cleaning the reservoir tank and replacing the old power steering fluid is a great option. It will help eliminate the steering wheel making noise issue.

Dry Ball Joints

Ball joints allow the steering and suspension control arms to knuckle in a smooth manner. The smooth movement occurs when the ball joints are lubricated.

Leaving the ball joints dry will result in the production of cranking noises when turning the vehicle. Lubricating the part will help to reduce the risk of damaging the adjacent components.

Besides that, dry ball joints make the steering wheel shake while driving. You can visit your mechanic to inspect and confirm if it is the only issue.

Worn-out Control Arm Bushings

The control arm bushings are prone to wear and tear. It is inevitable and worn-out control arm bushings will cause noise when turning the steering wheel.

Bad control arm bushings usually crack and break down. The car will be making a creaking or grinding noise when turning the steering wheel.

The sway bar links are responsible for reducing body roll when turning and negotiating a corner. These components bring stability to the four-wheel vehicle and prevent rolling over when having a sharp corner turn.

The frequent engagement subject the sway bar to wear and tear. Damaged sway bar links result in the production of clunking noise when turning the steering wheel.

Fixing the issue as soon as possible is important. Bad sway bar links make it difficult to handle the vehicle and the issue also result in the generation of knocking noise when turning the steering wheel.

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Takeaway from Experts

Hire a professional car mechanic to inspect your steering and suspension system. The mechanic will examine and diagnose the source of creaking noise when turning the steering wheel.

Keep in mind that the mechanic will diagnose the power steering rack, ball joints, tie rods, hydraulic fluid, and more. A driving test will also be undertaken to pinpoint the issue from your car.

Why the steering wheel makes noise when turning is due to bad tie rods, low power steering fluid, damaged steering rack, and worn-out shocks. Fixing the issues will restore your vehicle to normality.

About Joshua Thomas

Joshua Thomas just simply loves cars and willing to work on them whenever there's chance... sometimes for free.

He started CarCareTotal back in 2017 from the advices of total strangers who witnessed his amazing skills in car repairs here and there.

His goal with this creation is to help car owners better learn how to maintain and repair their cars; as such, the site would cover alot of areas: troubleshooting, product recommendations, tips & tricks.

Joshua received Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering at San Diego State University.

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