Suspension Noise … what am I doing wrong?


Ready to race!
Concord, NH
I put H&R Sport springs on a couple months ago, and have been chasing noises ever since.

I recently installed adjustable end links, and adjusted them to be neutral under load. That made a HUGE difference, but I still have popping noises in low speed turns.

Yesterday I pulled the front suspension out again… everything looks fine - the bearing and mount were seated and aligned properly, and the spring was sat in the perch against the lower stop. I disassembled the strut assemblies anyway and found play in both bearings (in addition to rotational freedom, there was a little play along the Z-axis where I could wiggle the metal lip away from the bearing just a little…)

I put new bearings on, again, and switched from 034 to ECS mounts. It cleaned the entire strut assembly with Simple Green, including the lower perch, and reassembled everything with brand new nuts and bolts, torqued to spec and re-checked twice … upper strut bolts to 15 nm + 90*, pinch bolts to 70 nm + 90* (on the nut), end links to 65 nm, and top nuts to 60 nm under full load.

The car was perfect after getting back in the road, but after about 50 miles, I‘ve got popping noises again. This has been the sane for the last several attempts to resolve the noise — it’s perfect at first, then the popping develops and worsens over time.

I was all but certain I must be doing something wrong, or missing a step, but I took my time and rechecked EVERYTHING yesterday. I feel like if it was a bad part, it would be noisy from the get-go, not perfect at first and then worsening over time. And I would think something is coming loose, except I know for sure I torqued to spec!

What am I missing? Is it possible it’s a CV issue? Any and all ideas welcome…


Autocross Champion
HI State
2016 GTI SE MT
Control arm bolts maybe? 70nm +180. Or front sway bar bolts. Don't know the torque for those.
*edit* 20nm +180.
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Go Kart Newbie
I had this same issue, popping sound at low speed turns, and literally just fixed it yesterday.

Turned out to be the spring skipping on the on strut bearing. The popping sound you hear is the spring releasing in tiny increments. The solve is to put a Tein spring silencer (or rubber equivalent) on the top of the spring in between the strut bearing. Stops the spring from skipping.

See this thread for more details starting at post #96…

Hope this helps!
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Ready to race!
Concord, NH
Thanks — yeah that’s one of the first things I thought of … the H&R springs came with a very long length of spring silencer already installed — it covers the entire dead section of the springs (the area that’s fully compressed under load). I also applied a thin layer of grease to it, but no luck.

I finally just took the car in to my local VW performance shop … I decided I was going to just live it with, and needed to get the alignment done — but asked them to look things over for me before they did it. Interestingly, they discovered that the internal valving of the DCC strut are damaged. With the car off the ground, when turning the steering the wheel, they can see the strut lifting and dropping slightly throughout the turn, making that popping noise.

I had originally put springs on the car which did not fit — and I suspect driving around on those, with LOTS of clunks bumps and other problems — for two weeks is what damaged the struts... I have a set Bilstein B6 on order, and that should finally clear things up! #payToPlay