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Discussion Starter #1
While driving my 2004 E, occasionally, in fact rarely, I'll experience some really shockingly loud "BANG" coming from the front area of my car. It just happened a bit ago driving back from my gym at 45 mph. "BANG!" like a large rock crashing into my windshield or someone hitting the top front of my roof with a piece of rebar. "BANG!!" I didn't see anything being thrown up from the car in front of me and there was no new ding in the windshield.

One time it happened while driving through the Eisenhower Tunnel in Colorado. "BANG!!" My heart racing, I just wanted to get to the other side, pull over and check things out. Didn't find anything amiss, continued my ten dray road trip without issues. Still...

Is there some way this could sound without it being a large rock against my windshield or something being thrown up violently underneath? Like I said in the title, the answer could be "stuff happens" but I'm wondering about something mechanical that could bust out this sharp alarming sound that I've not considered.
 

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Is it just the noise, or do you feel an impact as well (through the seat, your feet, your hands on the steering wheel??
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Is it just the noise, or do you feel an impact as well (through the seat, your feet, your hands on the steering wheel??
This most recent time it was just the loudness of the sound, more of a metallic "BANG!" than a rock hitting the windshield, no impact through the steering wheel. The time in the tunnel I felt it through the steering wheel and the sound was louder that time and didn't necessarily feel like it was something hitting the windshield but it was extremely alarming. My heart was pounding when I finally pulled over to look.

There have been other times when this unexplanable "BANG!" happened but like I said it's very rare. Of course, there are times when it's obviously a rock hitting my windshield or I see myself about to run over something and feel/hear it hitting underneath...big rocks on a dirt road for instance.

It's just the times where there is no discernible warning of it happening is what's most concerning. I'm willing to accept that "stuff happens" out there on the road but these rare loud sudden sounds are something else, maybe mechanical, although I have no idea what that could be. It's like something has come loose from my suspension, maybe, I dunno.
 

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I suggest getting it up on a lift, or a set of ramps, or up on jack stands and look/feel around for something loose or broken. I'm looking for another E; looked at two yesterday, one of them had a completely broken sway bar link (not that this would necessarily cause a bang). Point is, get under it and take a look.
 

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By chance, is your E an auto or manual? Several years ago on my first E, a 5 speed '04, I was stuck in pre-Christmas traffic leaving Costco. It took 45 min to go about 2.5 miles before I could break free from the stop and go. As I turned a corner and shifted, there was the most violent bang and impact underneath the car. It was quite unnerving to say the least. As far as I could tell, nothing was noticed as a result.
Fast forward about to February or so. One morning it was 7° F when I went out to go to work. The clutch pedal went all the way to the floor and stayed there. <gulp>. I ended up getting the whole clutch replaced, and I've read of that scenario on here before with the pedal sinking to the floor. But I have to believe that the stop and go, and that violent bang and impact underneath had to be a clutch spring breaking. I don't mind shifting except in stop and go traffic. My current '07 is a 5 speed auto, so I don't hope to see that scenario again.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
My '04 E is a five speed. That's a pretty alarming sound isn't it? My clutch still works "fine" but I've heard that "BANG!!" at least twice now. The one time in the tunnel I wasn't shifting, can't remember if I was shifting during the time that prompted me to start this thread. How many clutch springs can go before it stops working?
 

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EG, how old are your ball joints/control arm bushings? I'm with fleetw00d, jack that thing up and take a look. If you can get the front end in the air with the suspension hanging free, grab each tire at 12 and 6 and see if you can move the wheel and tire at all.
 

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My '04 E is a five speed. That's a pretty alarming sound isn't it? My clutch still works "fine" but I've heard that "BANG!!" at least twice now. The one time in the tunnel I wasn't shifting, can't remember if I was shifting during the time that prompted me to start this thread. How many clutch springs can go before it stops working?
1 because the shattered pieces are there to fod the rest of the clutch up?
 
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