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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Since day one, (two weeks ago) I have had a little "clicking" noise coming from way back and it has gotten worse over time. First I thought it was coming from the tailgate suspension cable (the end that attaches to the body structure can rotate and rattle freely), so I taped those in place to see if that is where it is coming from but turned out not to be the case.

Does anyone else have this problem? If so, where was the problem?

Thanks,

Jackson
 

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Check the rear seatbelts... mine sometimes knock against the walls.

Drew
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks for the suggestion, but I don't think that is it.

The " clicking" is more like metal on metal. Sometimes, I'd hear three or four clicks in short succession. Other times, only a click now and then.

Jackson
 

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Hmm... well, if not the belts, maybe the back seats are loose? Might also try lifting up that cover and checking the spare... maybe something is rattling around in the spare area, like a loose wrench or something? Maybe the spare itself is loose?

Drew
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks, I will report back once I have it figured out.

For things like this, I always try to figure it out myself instead of letting the dealer's "mechanics" try wild and crazy thing and end up messing it up even worse.

Jackson
 

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i've got that same rattle,it's driving me crazy! I had my wife drive while i tried to locate it . 30 minutes later ,as far as i can tell it,s up near the top of the rear hatch almost like the roof. can't quite isolate it. but it sounds like the same noise you describe. i'll get back to you when i find it,And I
Will!!
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Posted: Wed Apr 30, 2003 2:14 pm Post subject: rattle

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i've got that same rattle,it's driving me crazy! I had my wife drive while i tried to locate it . 30 minutes later ,as far as i can tell it,s up near the top of the rear hatch almost like the roof. can't quite isolate it. but it sounds like the same noise you describe. i'll get back to you when i find it,And I
Will!!
That would most likely be the hinges or lifts for the hatch. I will have a closer look to see.
 

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Jlo and others,

I had the exact same problem which started about 2 weeks after I got the car. I tried to diagnose it myself for weeks and nothing seems to eliminate the noise. Finally I took it to Autowest Honda in Fremont, CA.

After 3 visits on the same problem, here's their conclusion (written on the worksheet. I'm copying here word for word):

"Customer states clunking noise heard from rear suspension when driving at slow speeds making 90 degree turns, advice...
Verified creeking noise when on road test with customer. Using chassis ear noise can be heard from the rear hatch area, not from rear suspension. Cannot duplicate noise by tapping on pannels. Adjusted all three strikers, noise still present. Inspected interior structure, handle assembly and wiper arm assembly on rear hatch. Adjusted rubber bumper stops. Removed third brake light assembly, noise still present. Loosened and tightened hinge points. Separated spot welds at metal contact points. Roadtested vehicle with factory rep, noise is a normal characteristic of element due [to] lack of "B" pillar. Noise is a body flex noise."


As you can see, this is full of #[email protected]!*. Now the noise has gotten much worse. It makes the same noise even with very, very slight turns or going through very small bumps.

The America Honda rep name is:
Kim Tower
(800)-999-1009.

I'm taking the car back to where I bought it and see if they can deal with America Honda directly for me since I don't have time to talk non-sense with this dealership or America Honda.

Just an FYI. One of my coworkers had a 5-series BMW. It had very similar problem that never went away. The BMW dealership tried to fix it for 5-6 times and finally gave up. They gave him a brand new car a year later. So don't let these car manufacturers give you the "normal characteristic of the element" bullshit.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
SanJose, what you'd experienced is exactly the reason I like to find and fix little rattles myself. When you give a problem like this to the dealer, who do you think they will put on the job. Their most highly paid mechanic or some apprentice that is getting $10 and hour. They end up tearing your car apart, breaking retaining clips, warping plastic panel, and generally, your car is worse shape then before even if they end up finding and fixing the original problem. In the electronics industry, we call this the shotgun approach.

But I do have good news to report. I think I am onto something. I have not found a fix yet, but the problem is associated with the hatch gas pressurized lifters. I removed them and the NOISE is GONE. I have regained my sanity. :D

You can try this out quite easily. Use a flat blade screw driver and pry the metal clip up while pulling the lifter away from the ball joint. I am sure there is a special tool to do this, but this works very well. Make sure you have someone there to support the hatch while you do this because as soon as you seperate the lifter from the ball joint, the hatch will fall on your head.
 

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I believe if a dealer told me that such a noise was characteristic of the vehcile due to it's design, I'd be inclined to park the vehcile on his foot and explain it was a natural characteristic of a very aggreived customer.

Let's face it, one of the reasons Honda claimed they expected 5-star crash test ratings is because this has a rigid body structure and the rigidity lost due to the absence of the B-pillar is supposed, according to Honda's own design and marketing, to be taken up by considerable extra bracing.

Nor would a rattle that is caused by structural flexing (whether intentional or not) get worse over time unless the vehcile was flexing more - which would be a rather curious safety issue that one would imagine Honda would want to deal with before the law suits start arriving.

My own experience with a rattle in the back was exactly as DREW had posted, that after use the buckle had lodged between the side wall and the seat rather than retract to the correct position behind the seat. But all in all, since not every E rattles at the rear, it's not a design 'feature' and if it were, one would expect Element sales to drop to roughly 0 since I doubt there are many who would be prepared to buy a new car that was known to have incurable rattles.
 

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Thanks for the tip on the hatch lifter. So are you driving it with the hatch attached or not :eek: ? or did you only take the hydrolic lifter out and leave the hatch in?

in any case, my case is beyond my dealership. the dealership asked me to take it to america honda directly. i called this number (in your owner manual):

1-800-999-1009 (select option#4)

and opened a case. america honda said they will get back to me in 3-5 working days with an answer/recommendation. i hope they're not using these 3-5 working days to come up with another excuse.

sanjose[/img]
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Yeah, I left the hatch attached.

Today at lunch, I re-attached the lifters and the noise did not come back. So, I can't do much more until the noise comes back.
 

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I too have the annoying little creaks and pops in the rear section. I just found 12-packs of coke on sale 3/$8, so I bought 6 12-packs of coke and one 12-pack of Coors bottles. I placed all of this spread out on the rear hatch floor. Drove home over the normal route that creates pops and creaks, and VOILA, not a peep.

Now, not sure whether it is the cheapy hatch floor, or the way it acts in harmony with the other pieces in back. But, the pops and creaks went away with moderate weight on the hatch floor. Try this yourself just to eliminate a possibility before you continue with Honda.

Sometimes it's the simple thing that eludes being fixed.
 

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oak lawn element,

thanks for the tip. but actually, one of my many attempts to diagnose it was to completely remove the cheapo spare cover. and the noise was still there.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Well jlo...the reason why your hatch is rattling is because you have too much junk in your trunk. right, JLO?
kdish, please read the thread.
 

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[quote:b44a082f77="jlo"]
Well jlo...the reason why your hatch is rattling is because you have too much junk in your trunk. right, JLO?
kdish, please read the thread.[/quote:b44a082f77]

JLO - um - the guy was making a joke about your screen name.
 

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My wife and I are on our 2nd element, the first one we had for two days and it started making that noise in the rear end. We carried it to the dealership and they searched for two days and could not find the problem. I called them and told them that we wonted another Element or our old car back. They gave us another one. The bad thing is that we have had this one for about three weeks and it is starting to make the same noise. I cannot believe this.

Anyone have any thoughts on what we should do?
 

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[quote:695fcc57b5="jlo"]
JLO - um - the guy was making a joke about your screen name.
I don't get it. Does JLO have a lot of junk in HER trunk? :?[/quote:695fcc57b5]

The term "junk in the trunk" refers to a large @$$! And JLO is famous for the "junk in her trunk" - how could you have that screen name and NOT know this?!? :lol:
 
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