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2009 Corolla Creaking
04-11-2017, 03:08 PM
Post: #1
2009 Corolla Creaking
My 2009 Toyota Corolla is creaking when the brakes are applied. It sounds like it is coming from the front, possibly only the driver's side. The car is driven on Cape Cod in Massachusetts and it has about 64000 miles on it. A little history: In Nov 2016 at about 58000 miles we needed to have the wheel bearing replaced. Before this was done the car never made this creaking noise. It started immediately after this repair. We took it right back to the mechanic. They looked at it, said something wasn't seated right. they fixed this and for 2 days there was no noise. When the noise started again, we took it back to the mechanic. He said the noise was probably continuing to happen because some of our break clips had rusted and broken off. To make us happy he replaced the pads at his cost. For 5 months this seemed to stop the noise. But now the creaking is back! Sad
The noise is audible only when braking the car to a stop. It's definitely a creaking noise, not squealing or squeaking. It seems to really be bad the more the breaks get used. In other words, if we only drive a few miles, we will not hear the noise. So, it may be that the noise has taken this long to return because the weather was cold. Now it is warming up. The other day we took it on a 80 mile or so trip to where the temp was about 70 degrees. By the time we arrived at our destination it sounded like the breaks would fall off the car, the noise was so loud! We took it to another mechanic today for another opinion. He seems to think the noise is being caused because we only got new pads and not new rotors. He thinks if we replace both the 5 month old pads and the older rotors that the noise will go away. He says it is just a noise, that there is nothing structurally wrong with the brakes or calipers. But it will cost about $450 to have the job done.
Before we spend this much money on a noise, I was wondering if anyone here might have any ideas or advice. Thanks!Smile
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04-11-2017, 07:26 PM (This post was last modified: 04-11-2017 07:26 PM by sandman.)
Post: #2
RE: 2009 Corolla Creaking
If you are mechanically inclined you can do this job for about 100 to 150 dollars

If you are mechanically inclined you can do this job for about 100 to 150 dollars
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04-11-2017, 07:47 PM
Post: #3
RE: 2009 Corolla Creaking
(04-11-2017 07:26 PM)sandman Wrote:  If you are mechanically inclined you can do this job for about 100 to 150 dollars

If you are mechanically inclined you can do this job for about 100 to 150 dollars



Unfortunately, I am not mechanically inclined. Sad
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04-11-2017, 11:37 PM
Post: #4
RE: 2009 Corolla Creaking
A rhythmic clicking from the front wheels can be a couple of things, so let me explain. The front axles can make noise, but that's usually on acceleration or on tight turns as the outer joint reaches it's maximum travel. This may or may not have anything to do with the previous work but the end of the axles are removed during a wheel bearing repair and at that mileage it's not likely they should be a problem.... unless the rubber boot covering the joint is torn. Using a flashlight, look under from the front of the car and check for signs of grease spattered behind the wheel.

The brakes can also make noise as you describe and that's usually related to various pieces of hardware that become worn over time or if whoever did the last brake job (prior to the wheel bearings) mighty have missed something. It could also be that you picked up a piece of grit along the road and there's some minor damage to part of the brake rotor which can't be seen with a casual glance. IOW, it's coincidental to the timing of the bearing job.

Here's what I would do:

If there's no serious vibration and the brakes are working ok, then ignore it till it bothers you. At 64k miles you are about due for a set of brakes anyway so if you change your mind then have a shop replace both the rotors and the pads (along with hardware) and you gain peace of mind for another 50 - 60k miles.
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04-12-2017, 12:47 AM
Post: #5
RE: 2009 Corolla Creaking
(04-11-2017 11:37 PM)Rupe Wrote:  A rhythmic clicking from the front wheels can be a couple of things, so let me explain. The front axles can make noise, but that's usually on acceleration or on tight turns as the outer joint reaches it's maximum travel. This may or may not have anything to do with the previous work but the end of the axles are removed during a wheel bearing repair and at that mileage it's not likely they should be a problem.... unless the rubber boot covering the joint is torn. Using a flashlight, look under from the front of the car and check for signs of grease spattered behind the wheel.

The brakes can also make noise as you describe and that's usually related to various pieces of hardware that become worn over time or if whoever did the last brake job (prior to the wheel bearings) mighty have missed something. It could also be that you picked up a piece of grit along the road and there's some minor damage to part of the brake rotor which can't be seen with a casual glance. IOW, it's coincidental to the timing of the bearing job.

Here's what I would do:

If there's no serious vibration and the brakes are working ok, then ignore it till it bothers you. At 64k miles you are about due for a set of brakes anyway so if you change your mind then have a shop replace both the rotors and the pads (along with hardware) and you gain peace of mind for another 50 - 60k miles.


Thanks for the response. Smile The idea that road grit may have damaged something is interesting. Both axles and boots were replaced literally days before the bearings were replaced. There was no creaking before or after the axles and boots were replaced. Only after the bearings were replaced. Of course, the timing of that could be entirely coincidental.

I read that a bad suspension can cause creaking. I have suspected the suspension on this car has never been great as it bottoms out over the littlest things. But, I am not sure if a suspension problem would seem to only be making noise when breaking......
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04-12-2017, 10:32 AM
Post: #6
RE: 2009 Corolla Creaking
Yes, but hard to pin down because it would only make noise as the suspension travels. IOW, on first application of the brakes when the nose dives down an inch or two. You should be able to duplicate that kind of noise by pushing up and down on the front bumper or going over speed bumps slowly without touching the brakes.

The other possibility is the guy who did the bearings put a ding in the rotor with a hammer while working. Still in all, probably nothing to lose sleep over as long as everything else checks out.
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