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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Searching threads for my whirring noise I think I have determined it is the ISB and I have ordered parts.

It’s pretty darned cold and rainy here in Vancouver Canada for working on transmissions in the driveway for a month or two yet.

The noise is new, not crackling anything just a sort of whirring/rubbing noise… If I can stay off driving it I gather I’m better doing that. But I’m curious if people have driven them for a long time with the minor whirrrr…
 

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0 miles. Don't drive it unless you want to risk throwing gears.

Also are you replacing all the bearings? Or just the ISB? Are you aware there are two isb's?
 

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Balo, are you referring to the big bearing on the other end of the input shaft? I was recently browsing the IC archives and snikrepretep mentioned it a few times in 2012/13. Replacing it seems to be a great idea while apart for ISB replacement. Along with, by some accounts, what I am understanding to be the clutch pilot bearing, but not sure.
 

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While I agree you should replace it as soon as possible, I did drive on an ISB making noise for 10K miles and there are some other examples that with similar mileage. It all depends on how bad the noise is and if it is getting worse over time. Worst case you need to replace/rebuild everything in the transmission but I bet you can make it until late February or March if you don't put too many miles on it. Of course that is all at your own risk. There are several threads about the rebuild but this one is recent. I did the rebuild with only slightly above average mechanical abilities and it was actually pretty rewarding and not too intimidating. Pictures and Tips From My 5 Speed Input Shaft Bearing... Good luck and keep us updated.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thanks for that write up link and anecdote.

Definitely more disassembly and room for absentminded reassembly trouble than I usually allow myself… but I’ll take it up again on a more energetic day
 

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The fact that most people seem to be unaware that the main shaft is supported by two separate bearings inside the transmission, still blows my mind.

You have as long as it takes until the the bearing wears to the point it starts causing severe issues inside the transmission. A failing and failed bell housing side input shaft bearing, aka the "ISB," will cause permanent damage to 3rd and 5th gears. Additionally, the failing bearing is depositing metal fragments into the transmission fluid which isn't great for any of the other bearings inside the transmission.

Last week I tore down a transmission where the customer had driven the car until it started popping out of 2nd, 3rd and 5th gear. Long story short, that transmission was essentially junk. 2nd and 3rd gear were destroyed and the only reason why 5th wasn't also toast was because the customer didn't use it.

Because of these reasons and more, I firmly believe that the only correct answer is a complete transmission rebuild.

I'm sure Minor can chime in on the pains of only replacing one bearing at a time and getting to do the transmission in-and-out multiple times.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·

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I initially replaced the front ISB and drove my car 30,000 plus miles. There was a very small leak in the transmission that caused the oil to drain and at that point the rear center shaft bearing needed to be replaced. My problem occurred as a result of a low oil issue which manifested itself by not being able to stay in 5th gear. I don't think that replacing the rear ISB at the same time I replaced the front one would have prevented the rear one from failing. The best thing to do is check the rear bearing for wear when replacing the front one.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
A thread or two have mentioned putting in a liqui moly product for reducing the wear until replacing the ISB … However elsewhere I have seen advice that you should never use their products when they are synchros. Just curious what others think or have tried

 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Sharing a movie of the noise it’s making.

I noticed the noise still follows rpms when the car is coasting in neutral, clutch depressed or not. Which seems to contradict some questioning people had on other ISB threads So now I’m wondering if I’m a little bit hasty in splitting my transmission.

I shared it to an insight Facebook group so I figured I might as well leave it here too

 

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Mine went from a little noise to a lot of noise in just a few weeks. It was embarrassingly loud; wake up the neighbors loud. I think you normally get more time than that. I never had popping out of gears and I think I replaced both bearings, but I think the ISB is the only one you really need to replace. I also discovered a rough differential bearing when reassembling and found one at a local bearing supplier. Fortunately it was not the side with the plastic speedo gear. I don't know how you replace that side. My vote would be to drive it until you know you shouldn't be. Hopefully it will make it until better weather.
 

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I'm not recommending it, but I drove on it for a while too. I bought the car knowing it had a bad ISB and I wouldn't be able to address it immediately. Fortunately my commute did not require lots of clutch work, and lack of axial loading/unloading on that shaft may be a factor? I think it probably saw 4k miles of use.

When I actually got in there and inspected it, it was bad. But honestly I expected it to be worse because the noise was awful, then again i'm generally pretty sensitive and this sort of thing drives me nuts. I bought the car for $1k so my tolerance was perhaps higher than usual.

Here's a video I grabbed.
 

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[...]I noticed the noise still follows rpms when the car is coasting in neutral, clutch depressed or not. Which seems to contradict some questioning people had on other ISB threads So now I’m wondering if I’m a little bit hasty in splitting my transmission.[...]
Please test this for me:

Have the car stopped and set the parking brake. With the clutch depressed, shift into any gear and then rev the engine.

Does "the noise" still happen?

If "the noise" still happens, then in this specific circumstance, it is not coming from any spinning parts inside your transmission.
 

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Searching threads for my whirring noise I think I have determined it is the ISB and I have ordered parts.

It’s pretty darned cold and rainy here in Vancouver Canada for working on transmissions in the driveway for a month or two yet.

The noise is new, not crackling anything just a sort of whirring/rubbing noise… If I can stay off driving it I gather I’m better doing that. But I’m curious if people have driven them for a long time with the minor whirrrr…
I drove our Insight for about 10K miles with this issue. I then used the YouTube video from Eric the Car Guy to replace the ISB and OSB along with the CV axle seals. I did not see any damage to the gears or syncros when it was apart. Be sure to check the condition of the lower motor/transmission mount as I found ours was junk and the probable cause of ISB failure. I have driven the car 33K miles since the rebuild with no issues or noise.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Please test this for me:

Have the car stopped and set the parking brake. With the clutch depressed, shift into any gear and then rev the engine.

Does "the noise" still happen?

If "the noise" still happens, then in this specific circumstance, it is not coming from any spinning parts inside your transmission.
thanks going to try that to verify… Pretty sure it does make the noise in this circumstance since it did so when coasting along only when revving
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Mkay so it made the noise regardless and in fact it was much louder and became constant even when not on the gas which made it possible for me to get out and look at it. Seems it's actually a pulley / belt / bearing in that area. So purretty glad I didn't disassemble my transmission !

Now trying to figure understand which pulley is what and how to narrow the sound down to one of them as even with a hose in my ear pointing at it it's too vague which specific spot is doing it

No difference if a/c is on or off... but can't rule it out it might not be powering on the compressor even when switched, as I have to recharge it often to do that, due to a leak.


 

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Have had to replace it on 3 of the 4 Insight's I've owned. One of the idle pulleys listed on rockauto does not fit, so select wisely if going that route. I opted to buy the bearing from rockauto and reuse the stock pulley. It was easy to tap out/in.

Used from rockauto: NATIONAL 203FF Compressor Clutch Bearing
 
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