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Rattles, Rattles, Rattles

9184 Views 32 Replies 16 Participants Last post by  Arbus
Tell me I'm not the only one? My car has developed so many little rattles that are driving me half way crazy. And the thing of it is they are developing on things that I haven't taken apart. There's two, possibly three in the dash, I think one of em's the passenger air bag, no clue what the other is. The worst one is the rear hatch, shin etsu on the seals helped some, but hit a big bump and it vibrates. And now there's one somewhere up above the head liner starting to develop, it's one that no one but I would be able to hear. Ohh and the little lock piece on the glove box is about to become one I know it, it keeps getting looser and looser. And the worst one of all is not really a rattle, but my rear view mirror has lost a lot of it's holding ability so it vibrates enough to totally screw up my rear visability on every bump now.

So do these sound common to anyone else? Or more over has anyone attempted to tackle these? And are they covered under warranty? I'm thinking my dealership and I are going to have a fun time right before my 36,000 is up.

Ok ok, my sub woofer may have contributed to the rear view mirror one slightly :wink:
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Whether they will fix rattles as a warranty item is dealer-dependent. I wouldn't count on it.

The glove box is an easy adjustment. Just loosen one or both of the hinge screws at the bottom and adjust for fit..

Not much in the headliner, I don't think. I don't really know. Antenna wire?

Have you checked the price of new weather stripping for the rear? It might not be too bad.
Holicow said:
Have you checked the price of new weather stripping for the rear? It might not be too bad.
My girlfriend recently took her '00 Insight in for 30,000 maintenance, and the dealership replaced the rubber seals around the hatch and doors.
Rick, I feel your pain.

I have a couple of annoying rattles. One is in the door panel and sounds like a loose clip. One sounds like it's right behind the speedo, no amount of banging on the dash will quiet that one down. :wink:

And the all out worst rattle in my Insight is from all of the loose junk I have in my glovebox. Screw driver, wheel lug tool, tire guage, sunglasses, pen, pocketknife, hair brush, manual... ugh. you think i need to clean it out one day.

I don't think the dealership will fix rattles unless they are very, very, very easy to hear. I had my dealership try to find the rattle in the door and they couldn't hear it. Do I have sonic hearing or what? Eventualy it kind of went away when I got new run channels. Oh, of course they said I was getting it confused with change rattling in the change drawer. I think they assume everyone is an idiot... what a shame.

I would suggest you take a service tech with you on a test drive and point out all of the rattles you hear. That way you know they have to take notice.

Good luck.
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All my seals are in great shape. The occasional application of silicon grease should keep them that way for years and years. It's like the hatch is not held down tight enough.

All I have in my glove box is the owners manual, the manual for my deck and a few other reciepts for oil and filters mainly. It's not the glove box itself, it's the little plastic piece that the key hold is in, it's getting looser, not a rattle yet, but I'm betting it's going to be soon.

A possilby common one that you can get at the back of the car, is the spare tire hold down, I had that for a while, I was very relieved to be rid of it. I now tighten the spare way down when I check it's pressure.

But as far as the dash if I hit a reall good few bumps in the road the whole thing will actually rattle, the rest of the time I think ones possibly in the clips that holds the air vents in and I'm fairly convinced the other is the passenger side air bag. I'm gonna take a look at how one goes about getting to it in the service manual.

Again, perhaps super sonic hearing applies here. The road noise too still bothers me even after my noise insulation project.
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It's not the glove box itself, it's the little plastic piece that the key hold is in, it's getting looser, not a rattle yet, but I'm betting it's going to be soon.
Rick, do you think a little epoxy in the screw holes would help? I did this to my right speaker. Two of the screws began to strip out so I glued 'em in. :wink:

Again, perhaps super sonic hearing applies here. The road noise too still bothers me even after my noise insulation project.
I wonder if now your Insight is too quite on the inside. So, now you can hear every single rattle and squeek. :shock:
I think I'd rather fix it right than epoxy it. I guess taking it apart if it does become a problem would be the first step. And believe me, the car is deffinitely not too quiet. The road noise is still overwhelmingly there. Quieter yes, but I would have to say my parents vehicles are still twice as quiet. It's a combination of LRR tires at high pressure combined with the stiff suspension.

I guess I'll wait until my warranty gets close to over with and then go see if they'd do anything about it.
Well, this got me in the mood to go out and try and tackel some of em. Had the sun not gone down and it being so windy outside I'd probably still be out there working at it.

Anyways, I found one, unfortunately for everyone else it probably wouldn't apply. I pulled my glove box out to get access to the air bag bolts (it's really easy actually), nope they were all tight as can be. But while I was down there I thought "it's been a good several oil changes since I changed my cabin air filter" so I proceded to remove the bar and check it out (good thing too it's time for another). In the process of putting it all back together I realized that the bolt on the right side that holds the bar in was cross threaded. The bar comming down from above which bolts to that one point was barely braced there and could move back and forth. Yeah that was a rattle, a big one actually. So I had to take that little brace out and get a good look at it. There are two bolts on the side that hold it in (and you need small hands to do this which I don't have). Yep cross threaded. I was able to put the bolt in the back side and get it to semi fix the threads enough where the bolt goes back in forward again, I'll probably eventually have to either drill and tap it larger or get a new one. But That put back together and snugged helped a lot. The other dash rattle is still there though.

I also went to the hatch and looked for anything I could tighten. The bolts that hold the hatch to the pivots were a tiny bit tightenable, but not enough that they could cause any rattles. I pulled up the plastic piece over the hatch latch mechinism, this revels 3 screws, two of which I was able to tighten a decent bit. The bolts at the bottom of the hatch shocks were extremely tight, no problems there.

I think I may have found some fairly significant points to check out though. When you open the hatch on either side there are two exposed torx bolts which hold the little rear spoiler on. They were loose enough that I would say this is where I'm going to start attacking this. This made the spoiler a little bit tighter at the edge, but the middle still isn't perfect, and the service manual shows more underneath the trim piece that goes around the wiper motor and rear little window.

Also, if you pull up the little cover at the end of the rear wiper there's a bolt which I was able to tighten some. Now, this all sort of comes together, because I did some little closing the hatch experiments with the wiper up and the wiper on the window, it made less noise with the wiper up. So I have to remove that trim piece anyways to get to the bolts that hold the spoiler in so I'm thinking rear wiper delete at the same time. I'll keep you posted.
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Ok I lied, actually I read the picture wrong in the ESM. There's one bolt in the middle of the spoiler, which is behind the trim. It's spec'd at 7 ft pounds so if I decide thats a possible area of rattling I'll see about tightening it up.
Rick, I have a similar rattle coming from the back of my car. The dealer has made several attempts to fix this, placing lots of foam pads under the trim on the hatch door, and replacing the gas struts. None of this has helped! Like you I’ve taken the trim off the rear hatch and tightened all the bolts, I’ve also checked everything around the spare wheel and taped down any dodgy looking wires.

The rattled stopped for a while when I removed the rubber bumpers on the bottom of the hatch door to have a look at them, then started again a few days later. This got me thinking that perhaps the bumpers have got a bit tired and are letting the hatch door rattle against the body of the car. To test this I glued a thin layer of rubber to the bottom of the bumpers.

This actually seemed to shut the rattle up, but I haven’t been able to test it long term as I slid the car off the road a couple of days later and smashed the front end in. The car's now been off the road for 6 frustrating weeks whilst my insurance company procrastinated, and the dealer waited for parts from Japan. When (if!) I get it back I’ll see if the rattle has permanently gone.
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I figured out the hatch rattle, at least for the most part! The seals over time get crunched down and don't hold the hatch to them as well (shin etsu helps a lot though), but there is an adjustment for this. First you pull up the little plastic cover that goes over the latch unit. When you pull the carpet back slightly you will see two 10mm bolts to the left, loosen those up and loosen up the three screws that are by the mechinism itself. I'm not really sure if loosening all of those is necessary, but push the whole thing down and retighten while keeping downward pressure on it and it allows the whole thing to move down just enough so that it holds the hatch down harder. I've driven about 10 miles since, and no rattling of the whole hatch like it used to do, and I did hit a few good bumps.
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I too have been pursuing what I think is a hatch rattle. Thanks for the ideas.

I just looked at my hatch. How do you get the plastic piece off of the bottom part. It seems very tight, does it just pull off? How does it go back on then?

Secondly, I think I might be getting a rattle from the hatch itself, where the grey pastic covering is over the bottom part of the hatch. Any idea how to get that part off? I removed the two 'pop it' fasteners, but it is still very tight.

Thanks for keeping us posted.


Yes you just pull it off, it is held by clips so you just push it back in. You might need to realign the clips first if some have moved.

For the other, I do not know
Yeah pretty much, you just pull. I think I'm too having some other rattles from the spoiler too still so thats the next one, but moving the hold down mechinism helped. I might also mention that when pushing it down it doesn't feel like it moves at all, but it does just a tiny bit, which is enough to hold it down much tighter.
Thanks for the info. It does pull up rather hard, but it came. I tried pushing down the latch - it didn't seem to move, but we'll see tomorrow about the rattle.

Thanks for the instructive info about how to remove things. I'm not afraid to do some of my own work, but knowing how hard to pull, push or hammer without doing damage is something I always appreciate. Once you've done it, it's easy - the first time is when I worry.
Hmmm. Rattle still there this morning, so the hatch thing didn't seem to help. Sure is hard finding some of these things. It seems so obvious as you're driving, but once stopped, everything seems tight.
Well, here's something else you may want to try. The whole hatch is adjustable. The bolt holes are all elongated so you can tweak it as needed. It's kind of vague in the service manual, but it shows it for realligning the hatch to go in the latch properly.

Also, as amazing as it sounds find a dealer who stocks Shin Etsu grease. Put on a latex glove and spread a little thin film over the whole weather seal. It will plump the seal back up some and make it seal better in general. A tube of it is $14, but you can use it when your windows start to slow down anyways.

BTW, you did push down on the latch mechinism while tightening it right?
Yep, pushed down really hard. Like I said, didn't seem to move at all though.
Mine didn't seem to move either, but it worked.
My son was home from college today, so I asked him for some help in locating my rattle. I wanted someone to poke their head back there while driving to pinpoint the source. Well, lo and behold, no rattle today! The only difference is that it has gotten colder again, in the high 30's instead of mid 40's and up. I assume something is expanding creating a tighter/looser fit. I will wailt and see.
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