STI rear strut clunk-FIXED-yeah - Subaru Forester Owners Forum
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post #1 of 9 (permalink) Old 08-10-2008, 09:14 PM Thread Starter
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STI rear strut clunk-FIXED-yeah

For the last year I've been driving around with the dreaded STI rear strut clunk, and I finally got off my lazy duff and fixed it.

I removed the two rear struts, scooped all the old yellow grease out, and replaced it with Mobil 1 synthetic grease. Each strut got about a 3 cm ball of grease rubbed all up and down. I then put everything back together and voila, no more clunk. It is practically like riding in a Cadillac...well not really but compared to the previous bang bang clunk clunk it is SOOOO much better.

The old yellow grease was almost waxy. The new red Mobil 1 grease is still slick but does have a slightly stickier consistency. And I used quite a bit more than I originally removed, per the NASIOC instructions.

Also, I could be fooling myself but the ride at low speed actually improved. There is less bobble head feel. There is definitely a lack of the low speed sticktion that accompanied the clunking. It is hard to describe, but at 0-15 miles an hour it was a weird jerking feel as the strut finally moved. That feeling is gone. If I have reason to take apart the front suspension, I'll probably replace the grease in the front struts too.

Interestingly, my struts were clunk free for the first 3 years of service which is pretty unusual. My theory is that the several large speed humps I drove over every day at my old house kept my strut seals properly lubed. These speed humps were of the 10 foot wide gradual hump variety (as opposed to the 1-2 foot wide kind). Within weeks of moving about a year ago, CLUNK, I had the strut clunk. Its a theory and I'm sticking to it

Why oh why did I wait so long? It is so much nicer to ride in the car now. Hopefully this solution proves to be long term, or else I'm going to be forced to switch over to the way too expensive OHLINS, 'cause I just can't go back to the clunk.

Bottom line, if you are putting in STI struts replace the grease first. If you have STI struts on the car and have the clunk, take the time to re-grease them, you won't be sorry.

Regards,
Justin Wade
2004 FXTi

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post #2 of 9 (permalink) Old 08-16-2008, 08:04 PM
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Link to said write up please.
I bought 04 sti struts/springs and have had a clunk since mile one.


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post #3 of 9 (permalink) Old 08-18-2008, 06:24 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by vtbimmer View Post
Link to said write up please.
I bought 04 sti struts/springs and have had a clunk since mile one.
The big thread is at:
STi rear suspension clunking? - NASIOC


Info on greasing here:
https://www.subaruforester.org/vbulle...es-pics-29677/
Regreasing STi struts - Page 2 - NASIOC

And for the love of Pete, do it. I didn't realize how noisy it was until it was gone.

Regards,
Justin Wade
2004 FXTi
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post #4 of 9 (permalink) Old 08-18-2008, 06:53 PM
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I cant tell if my clunk is loud enough or if im hearing the "clunk"
My 04 sti suspension had always been quiet for the first 30k miles or so. but recently i think i hear the clunk only in the rear. it is only heard with the radio off and going slow around driveways etc. I think its the clunk? how do i tell. Its kind of like a soft repeating tap on metal sound
Your description mentions bangs....what i hear doesnt even bother me i can just ignore it for the descent off my driveway in the morning

but if i gets worse i might do this

-Jeff
04 forester x mt gold
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post #5 of 9 (permalink) Old 08-18-2008, 07:19 PM
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Thanks for the link. Interestingly enough there is no clunk while installed on the SF. Only when they were on the SG. *scratches head*

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post #6 of 9 (permalink) Old 08-19-2008, 11:26 AM
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Originally Posted by jbleee View Post
I cant tell if my clunk is loud enough or if im hearing the "clunk"

It's not so much the noise you hear as it is the clunk you feel. The clunk comes from excessive side loading of the inverted body's shaft. Poor suspension geometry leads to a binding at the guide bushings.

You'll notice it most when coming to a stop or taking off from a stop. There will be a definite settling or popping up of the rear struts. You can just spray some lithium grease on the shafts as a quick fix.

'09 STI
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post #7 of 9 (permalink) Old 08-19-2008, 12:50 PM Thread Starter
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jbleee, you will know if your clunk is THE clunk if it gets worse. It is the popping as described above that is the defining characteristic.

And the definitive word of the wife is that the ride actually did improve with the relubing of the strut. Go figure.

Regards,
Justin Wade
2004 FXTi
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post #8 of 9 (permalink) Old 05-17-2010, 06:50 AM
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So does this clunking have any side effects i.e. is road holding affected?

Before:04 & 06 FSTi
Now:08 ISTi 20th anniversary
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post #9 of 9 (permalink) Old 05-17-2010, 09:26 AM Thread Starter
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So does this clunking have any side effects i.e. is road holding affected?
No, the effect is only bleeding ears and annoyed spouses.

Regards,
Justin
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