Grinding Sound From Car Engine

Hearing a grinding sound from a car engine is usually not a good thing. Grinding in a car means something is failing, so it needs to be dealt with quickly.

A grinding sound from a car engine could be any number of things. In this article, we’ll take a close look at some likely suspects that could be the cause. That being said, it is vital to understand that grinding noises usually mean something important is failing. Unless you are a mechanic, they usually are the kind of things you want a professional with experience to repair. Put another way, you might be better off to just head to the local mechanic to get it looked at right away. That being said, there are some common causes that can arise.


The one part that is designed to wear out in every car is the brake mechanisms. Most modern cars have disc brakes on the front of the car. The disc systems works by having a disc known as a rotor rotate along with the wheel. To stop, the rotor is squeezed from both sides by two pads – called brake pads. The pads will wear out over time. When they start to wear to much, a piece of metal will show through. When you brake, the metal will hit the rotor and make a grinding noise. If you only hear the grinding noise from your engine compartment during stopping, this could very well be the problem.


How is it that your wheels can turn independently of the car body? Bearings are the answer. They act as the transition between spinning parts and non-spinning parts. They are found everywhere from the wheel to the axle in a car. When one of these bearings go out, the friction will build up fast. It will cause a lot of heat and wear, but will also make a consistent grinding noise that will build up over time. Getting the bearing replaced and repacked with grease can solve the problem.


Your engine and transmission are connected to the chassis of the car via mounts. These are strong parts of the frame designed to take a lot of weight and torque. The buffer between the parts is usually a large, thick rubber washer assembly. As time passes, these rubber components fail. If they are compressed enough, they will actually allow metal from the engine or transmission to rub up against the metal of the chassis. It can make a loud, intermittent grinding noise.

A grinding sound from a car engine is a bad sign. If you catch it early enough, it might not cost a lot to fix. Whatever you do, don’t procrastinate in getting it looked at. Grinding only leads to bigger and more expensive problems. 

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