Suzuki Forums banner

1 - 10 of 10 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
6 Posts
Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I have a ' 97 Geo Tracker 2 door convertible 4x4 with 5 speed tranny.When I have the manual lock-outs engaged, whether in or out of 4 wheel drive, I sometimes get a noise like "wa-wa-wa-wa. If I hit a small bump in the road it stops. Next time I hit a bump it might start up again.My question is: if this is a bad wheel bearing, wouldn't it make that noise with the lock-outs disengaged also, since the bearing is still carrying the weight of the vehicle? I'm just trying to pinpoint the problem. Any thoughts on this?:confused: P.S. The noise speeds up and slows down according to vehicle speed.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,525 Posts
If the locking hubs are actually locking, it sounds like something in the front drive train as they only move while the hubs are locked.

The most likely suspect is the outer CV joint.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
24,207 Posts
Jack up each of the front tires and spin them and listen. You should also examine the tires for play, at 6:00 and 12:00 and at 3:00 and 9:00. If its a bearing, you will have slight play and you will also hear it 'growling' as you spin the tires. You should also get under the car and manhandle the steering/suspension/drivetrain parts for play. There should be none anywhere.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
158 Posts
Yes, first check all the drivetrain and suspension parts up front including u-joints going to the transfer case. If all good, then next thing I'd do is make sure the front differential oil level is up where it should be by removing the fill plug and feeling for oil, add GL-5 if needed.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
Thanks for the info guys. I'll do all of those things , but can I eliminate the wheel bearings as a cause, since the noise isn't present when the lock outs aren't engaged?In other words, why would the wheel bearings only make noise when lockouts engaged? Also there is no shaking or shimmying at any speed.Real smooth on the highway or at low speed.Doesn't act like any wheel bearing problems I've had with other vehicles.They'e usually pretty obvious. Thanks again for your input.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
158 Posts
From your 1st post description my hunch is a u-joint, but we all can only have our best educated guesses till you check it out.

Maybe not bearings, or maybe so and the noise is coincidental with lockouts so far. It's easy enough to check out like Bex said that you might as well right now while you're checking everything else out. Who knows, you might find you actually have a bad wheel bearing which hasn't gone horrible yet. And much better to find out now. I found out the hard way with one of my wheel bearings 155 miles away on my first trip downstate. I've learned a lot about these vehicles since then.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
987 Posts
I think you may want to jack up the car and spin the wheel with the hub both locked and unlocked. See if you can pinpoint the noise...my bet is it is the locking hub. When did you last service them?
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
24,207 Posts
Riley states a good possibility. You can unlock the hub, remove the locker (top set of screws) and spin again to see if you have the noise. There is a good video and info on the forum about how to service your hubs if you have never done so. You should do this yearly.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6 Posts
Discussion Starter #9
Thanks again guys for the input. I'll start with the hubs and clean and lube them up.I have driven the Tracker about 5000 miles since I bought it and have no idea when it was serviced prior to that. If that fixes the problem I'll definitely let everyone know because another member described the same noise and I don't know if he ever found a solution.It's a real puzzler. Other than the weird sound that it's occasionally making, everything in the four wheel drive system is working fine.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
24,207 Posts
Make sure that you understand that this car is part time 4wd, and should NEVER be driven with the hubs locked and the transfer case in 4wd unless you are on a slippery surface where one tire is able to slip, as well as having the same size tires on front and back. Otherwise you will damage your transfer case (wind-up).
 
1 - 10 of 10 Posts
Top