my car sounds like the helicopter from Transformers (Tire Related)
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  1. #1
    Superbad
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    my car sounds like the helicopter from Transformers (Tire Related)

    basically ever since i got my tires rotated a 2nd time, the usual way front to back and back to front, my car has sounded like a blackhawk chopper while crusing on the highway. i know during the summer, when the AC is on, our cars sound like a harrier jet, pretty loud, but this time while driving i hear audible sounds coming from the front, almost like a plop plop plop, but to the bassy interval of what a helicopter would make. It's not a creaking or groaning, or a wob wob, Both axles were replaced (Raxles), meyle Hd outer TRE's, brand new meyle front sway bar links. Upper and lower control arms are still stock but still look good. Plenty of Pentosin CHF-11S fluid, new brake fluid, so i'm left thinking it has something to do with the tires. How often do you rotate your tires? My indy told me 1st interval would be ~ 5k, then every other oil change after that or follow the built in Falken rotation wear indicators.

    here's the setup:

    99 1.8T Tip FWD
    Stock suspension
    B6 17'' Audi 5 Spoke Sport Rim
    UHP Falken 912 - 235/45/17 (purchased/mounted/balanced - Aug 07)
    Tire Pressure - 37~36Fronts and 35~34 Rear

    currently 17,000 miles on them.

    1st rotation done @ 5270 miles LF to LR and RF to RR (May 08)
    2nd rotation done @ 11280 miles LF to LR and RF to RR (Feb 09)

    Can i eliminate this noise at all? or am i stuck with it for the remaining life of the tires? Would it matter if i rotate them back to where they were before? i purchased the extended/replacement warranty on the tires, 100% replacement w/i 1st year, 75% 2nd year, so on and so forth. being i am on my 2nd year if i get them replaced, i would shell out 25% cost of each tire + re-mounting/balancing, should i just get a new set? Any advice inputs would be greatly appreciated. TIA

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  3. #2
    Super (Charged) Moderator, Grinding Gears...gone fishing! ScottPassat2.8's Avatar
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    how old are your shocks?

  4. #3
    Motel Room Moderator VAGguy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by scottpassat2.8 View Post
    how old are your shocks?
    x2. I'm thinking bad rear shocks which caused cupping. Not easy to feel until you bring them back up front.

  5. #4
    Superbad
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    Quote Originally Posted by VAGguy View Post
    x2. I'm thinking bad rear shocks which caused cupping. Not easy to feel until you bring them back up front.
    shocks are stock @ 104,xxx ...once spring comes around, i'm ordering a set of Koni FSD's, i already have the Eibach Pro Kit springs i got from gf as a V Day gift to match the FSD's.

    but anyways, i did the shock test, car parked on a flat surface, and i pushed on the rear (trunk), normally it would go down and up and back to normal position in 1 bounce, but i'm getting 2-3 extra bounces for the rear before it returns to normal position. does that help any?

    I got an alignment when i got my outer TRE's replaced a year ago, would bad rear shocks be the only culprit to tire cupping?

  6. #5
    Motel Room Moderator VAGguy's Avatar
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    yep, they're shot. Rear alignment, there is none. The only things that would cause that are bad shocks or bad balance.

  7. #6
    Super (Charged) Moderator, Grinding Gears...gone fishing! ScottPassat2.8's Avatar
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  8. #7
    Superbad
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    Quote Originally Posted by VAGguy View Post
    yep, they're shot. Rear alignment, there is none. The only things that would cause that are bad shocks or bad balance.
    ok, since i'm not replacing the shocks until the spring, which i for see to be within a months or so, would it be counter productive to undo the tire rotation, and put the back (currently on the front) and front (currently on the rear) to offset the cupping?

    or would leaving it the way it is, cupp the fronts (currently in the rear) and even out the noise?

  9. #8
    Motel Room Moderator VAGguy's Avatar
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    might as well just put them back. Keep the fronts in good condition. One pair is ruined, don't ruin the other pair. It's not reversible.

  10. #9
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    broken steel belt?

  11. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by vwblackb5 View Post
    1st rotation done @ 5270 miles LF to LR and RF to RR (May 08)
    2nd rotation done @ 11280 miles LF to LR and RF to RR (Feb 09)

    are they directional tires?


  12. #11
    Superbad
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    Quote Originally Posted by bksuperman View Post
    are they directional tires?

    tires are Falken Ziex - 912's which are Directional Tires. going to my indy tomorrw to have my tires inspected for cupping, and see whether i need to undo my rotation as to not ruin the good fronts (which are currently mounted on the rear).

    the helicopter noise is getting progressively louder and more annoying, i've put on about ~200 miles on the new setup, i hope reversing the rotation can put a stop to the helicopter noise.

  13. #12
    Super (Charged) Moderator, Grinding Gears...gone fishing! ScottPassat2.8's Avatar
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    you may need wheel bearings also.
    have them checked also.

  14. #13
    PZ
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    Falken Ziex - 912's are not directional, they are asymetrical and can be swapped side to side. They should be rotated every 5K to keep wear even.

    You can swap them to the opposite side and that will reduce the cupping. It will take at least 1000 miles if they are not too far gone.

  15. #14
    Superbad
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    Quote Originally Posted by PZ View Post
    Falken Ziex - 912's are not directional, they are asymetrical and can be swapped side to side. They should be rotated every 5K to keep wear even.

    You can swap them to the opposite side and that will reduce the cupping. It will take at least 1000 miles if they are not too far gone.
    my indy mech inspected the car:

    Rear Shocks are gone
    Rear tires (currently on the front) are cupped
    Fronts (which were rotated to the rear) were still good
    Wheel bearings were good

    so i had them undo the rotation, so as to not ruin the good fronts, because i'm getting a set of Koni FSD's in a month or so, and i also have the warranty on the tires, so i can just get a set of 2 new tires, instead of replacing all 4. After reversing the rotation, the noise was gone, and the drive is smooth again. UPS just delivered my eibach pro kit springs, so when i get everything installed, hopefully i'll have 2 new tires + alignment + i'll be 1.2~1.3'' lower + with a on my face.

  16. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by scottpassat2.8 View Post
    you may need wheel bearings also.
    have them checked also.
    +1

    Quote Originally Posted by NotAPreppie View Post
    broken steel belt?
    ++1

  17. #16
    Motel Room Moderator VAGguy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by vwblackb5 View Post
    my indy mech inspected the car:

    Rear Shocks are gone
    Rear tires (currently on the front) are cupped
    Fronts (which were rotated to the rear) were still good
    Wheel bearings were good

    so i had them undo the rotation, so as to not ruin the good fronts, because i'm getting a set of Koni FSD's in a month or so, and i also have the warranty on the tires, so i can just get a set of 2 new tires, instead of replacing all 4. After reversing the rotation, the noise was gone, and the drive is smooth again. UPS just delivered my eibach pro kit springs, so when i get everything installed, hopefully i'll have 2 new tires + alignment + i'll be 1.2~1.3'' lower + with a on my face.
    Hot damn.

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