Clunking/Popping Noise front wheels 1998 XJ Sport -
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post #1 of 3 Old 08-28-2013, 12:45 PM Thread Starter
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Clunking/Popping Noise front wheels 1998 XJ Sport

Hi Guys,

Im new here, just purchased my Jeep back in April. Its a 1998 Cherokee (XJ) with roughly 130,000 miles.

I've been having an issue with my truck since ive gotten it.

When the wheel it turned at least have the way and i am moving at a low speed, there is a loud pop/clunk noise which comes from the front wheels.
Examples of when it happens: Reversing/turning to get out of a parralel spot, going over any bumps slowly, with the wheel turned at all (turning into the driveway). im sorry if im not describing it too well, but i cant think of any other way to describe it. I will try to record the sound, and leave a link to it soon.

Additional info - I have death wobble and have been told by numerous people that all i need is new front tires and an alignment (which is true because my front tires have uneven wear (already like that when they were put on used) and i can tell by the steering and drifting that i need an alignment, but i was wondering if this wobble and this clunking could in any way be connected.

Any input is helpful guys. Unfortunately i am limited to rock auto parts and my own/ & friends car repair skills, so a mechanic visit is out of the question for now (Im BROKE !

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post #2 of 3 Old 08-28-2013, 04:15 PM
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1996 XJ Cherokee 
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Location: Gurnee
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Check the front u joints, that could be the clunking, especially since you notice it on turns. That wont cause death wobble. Tires themselves wont account for death wobble either.

Check you ball joints, wheel bearings, tie rod ends, trac bar and mount, and control arm bushings. Sometimes shaking the wheel side to side with the tires off the ground wont give any results for loose parts. Have somebody in the jeep, KOEO (key on engine off) and have them shake the wheel side to side while you keep an eye on the tie rod ends and trac bar for movement. Another common area to look at is where the trac bar connects to the axle, the hole gets ovaled out causing movement and can also cause a clunking as well as death wobble.

Most likely something is loose, rarely will the alignment cause it by itself.

1996 Jeep Cherokee- Project-- Rusty's 8in long arm, SYE kit, Teraflex driveshaft, Cragar soft 8's 15x10 with 33x12.5 Firestone Destination MT's, Eaton Tru Trac in the front
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post #3 of 3 Old 08-28-2013, 04:20 PM
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2000 XJ Cherokee 
Join Date: Apr 2002
Location: out in the garage - Minneapolis
Posts: 25,785
Numerous people are pretty much wrong. Popping and clunking from the front when turning at slow speeds is almost always the track bar. Inspect the track bar bushings, check the torque on the fasteners, especially at the frame bracket.

If you need an alignment, have the Tech inspect your front suspension and steering components for worn out or damaged parts.


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cherokee , clunk noise , clunking , suspension

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