205 GTI rear end noise?
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  1. #1
    Member ozclio's Avatar
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    Default 205 GTI rear end noise?

    Hi all, my series 2 205 gti is making a banging noise which is eminating from the rear of the car around the suspension area when I go over bumps. It also makes this noise like a bang or metalic thud when the suspension rises on the rebound? I thought it may be a bush but a mechanic looked at it and he thinks it the bearings (in particular the left side) in the rear torsion bar that is knackered. I spoke to another mechanic and explained the noise but he said generally one would hear a squeeking sound first not a banging metalic thud if it was the bearings/rear beam. I'm a little confused I have checked the rear spare tyre carrier and that is very tight. I have also checked the exhaust and that also looks ok. Thats what I thought it was at first as the noise made would be very similar to a loose exhaust hitting the underside of the car. Can anyone assist with a prognosis?

    Regards, Trent.

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  2. #2
    Member plasmapug's Avatar
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    Hey...

    205s have a notorious problem with the rear suspension and it is usually the bearings. There's info on that somewhere on the forum. My rear suspension has the tell-tale signs but as yet, no metallic thuds. The entire rear sags a bit and there is a more pronounced sag on the right hand side. I'm currently in the process of trying to get a rebuild done.

    So basically, if you are at the stage where your suspension is making noises like that, you should be able to see the problem from the car's stance. If the car sits perfectly, then it may be something else. That's my resoning anyway.

    What do the the rest of the guys (and gals!) think?
    ------------------------------
    '88 205GTi

  3. #3
    1000+ Posts Luca's Avatar
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    If your rear end is making banging noises or thuds then i'd see a doctor!

  4. #4
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    Default clunks

    When a 205/405 rear end makes the slightest bit of noise, you must IMMEDIATELY change the trailing arm bearings. Failure to do so will result in a badly scored crossmember and a BIG bill.

    By the time the suspension is visibly sagging it's usually too late - the damage has been done.

    What happens is the needle bearings rust away and then the trailing arm begins to contact the crossmember's bearing surface.

    The solution is to have the repair done right away and also to tap grease nipples into the trailing arms. Pumping the (large) air pockets full of grease will prevent a recurrence of the rusted bearing phenomenon.

  5. #5
    Member plasmapug's Avatar
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    Tippett

    I'm ready for that unfortunate big bill! I also have to change the cluth soon too . Yes, my bank balance has been in reverse of late but better a 205 additction than an illicit one.

    This will sound stupid, but what sort of sound do you mean by any sound? As I said, mine sags a bit, but I swear it only squeaks a little. It's not a "falling to bits sound".
    ------------------------------
    '88 205GTi

  6. #6
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    Default Sound

    Quote Originally Posted by plasmapug
    This will sound stupid, but what sort of sound do you mean by any sound? As I said, mine sags a bit, but I swear it only squeaks a little. It's not a "falling to bits sound".
    By sound, I mean any sound at all is a bad sign - a squeak even. This indicates the bearing is dry (likely the inner one) and that wear is occuring every time it squeaks.

    By the time it's visibly sagging, that means needle bearings have dissolved entirely and major damage has occured.

    When the wear is bad, the rear end becomes much more twitrchy than usual and the car's lift off oversteer becomes even more pronounced, even at moderate speeds.

    Get it fixed now.

    A 205 GTI is a worthy car, don't sweat puting some equity into it. It's not likely to depreciate any more, which is more than you can say for any newer car!

    -Mike
    Last edited by M. Tippett; 2nd April 2004 at 03:53 PM.

  7. #7
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    hi trent,my thoughts on the noises were from past experience.if you have bangs then that is most likely just the next stage of wear.due to cost of this job that is why i have suggested the second opinion.dont delay in getting it then we can move forward to your repairs.all the 205 i have pulled apart are already at the new shaft stage as well as the bearings and seals.its taken 13 years to get to this stage now so with better prevention you wont be pulling it apart again.i think from the factory the used very little grease in the tubes and bearings,with todays synthetic grease and better assembly you may not need the grease nipples.the problem with fitting grease nipples is the unwary wacks on a grease gun and keeps pumping untill grease runs out the end seals,this can damage the seals and then let water in. regards stuart

  8. #8
    Member ozclio's Avatar
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    Thanks guys, so are the trailing arm bearings seperate from the bearings in the torsion bar? By the way Stuart I have booked the car into Pedders to get them to do a suspension check on 19/4. I hope that will not be leaving it too long Tippett

    Thanks again, Trent.

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    my 205 also has this problem - serious sagging and some rubbing on the wheel arch. i've known about it for awhile but only now have gotten around to doing something about it.
    has anyone had their entire rear end rebuilt? i know it's going to be a BIG bill but i've been too afraid to get quotes yet. i have heard the figure of about $4000, but surely this can't be correct?
    plasmapug, have you managed to get a rebuilt one yet?
    any ideas/experiences?
    thanks

  10. #10
    Member plasmapug's Avatar
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    Michael,

    Jim had look at mine last weekend and reckoned that the bearing on the left side was on the way out, but not yet hyper critical. Hopefully I can get away with just new bearings (cheap) and a whole lot of fun to fit them (S Chung made a guide for this a while back). Jim also had a rear end on the bench, so I now finally know how it goes together! I will be getting in touch with Bill of the PAC about getting a good look at the rear end. We may find that when we pull it apart, there may be more serious damage.

    It still doesn't explain the sag though, mine sags more to the right side actually. I think this is just "wear" in the torsion bars. Anyone agree/disagree and how much are they anyway? Would this affect anything other than handlng (and perhaps wheels rubbing arches!)?

    The figure for $4k was for a brand new rear end. I saw that quoted on a car for sale ad on the PAC site a while back (not the 205 on there now). Apprantly you can get away with selecting the best used parts and putting them together.

    By the way, which one is your 205? I must have seen it around here sometime!

    Pete

    Quote Originally Posted by michaelh
    my 205 also has this problem - serious sagging and some rubbing on the wheel arch. i've known about it for awhile but only now have gotten around to doing something about it.
    has anyone had their entire rear end rebuilt? i know it's going to be a BIG bill but i've been too afraid to get quotes yet. i have heard the figure of about $4000, but surely this can't be correct?
    plasmapug, have you managed to get a rebuilt one yet?
    any ideas/experiences?
    thanks
    ------------------------------
    '88 205GTi

  11. #11
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    Icon9 Oh no...................................

    "A 205 GTI is a worthy car, don't sweat puting some equity into it. It's not likely to depreciate any more, which is more than you can say for any newer car! "

    -Mike

    I hope you're right Mike, but I don't think 10-15k is gonna be worth much in 10 years time! I reckon I have easily spent/lost 2 times the amount my car is currently worth excluding running costs.

    "I'm ready for that unfortunate big bill! I also have to change the clutch soon too . Yes, my bank balance has been in reverse of late but better a 205 additction than an illicit one. "

    There's a lot to be said for illicit drugs don't be too hasty in dismissing thier true value!!!

    I wish I hadn't read this thread, my 205 also has a slight loping to the right side. I thought this was due to me generally being the only one in the car most of the time. I can push the body side to side and up and down at the rear and everything is tight and firm as to be expected and no noises. Now I'm all paranoid, should I get this looked at or just indulge in more illicit drug use and hope it all goes away?

    - Pepe
    "Times have changed since the 205GTi. Modern society wouldn't tolerate such a focused car" Autocar magazine, 16 April 2003

  12. #12
    Member plasmapug's Avatar
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    Pepe,

    That's what we were thinking as well, about he sag to the right. I don't know the full history of the car but I can tell you that the passenger seat looked about in five billion times better condition than the driver's seat. Maybe we should ask some of the Euros/Canadians on here if they have a lean to the left. Still, there can only be so much sag before things start rubbing, as appears the case with michaelh.

    If there are no sounds coming form the rear, it should be right. Keep an eye on it every service or something. That's what I'm trying to figure out though. That is, bearings aside, is sag critically bad?

    The big question for me though is: What the wheel clearance is meant to be be for the rear wheels? Would this be in the Haynes manual?
    ------------------------------
    '88 205GTi

  13. #13
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    Default trailing arm bearings

    Quote Originally Posted by plasmapug
    Pepe,
    Maybe we should ask some of the Euros/Canadians on here if they have a lean to the left.
    Nope, a leaning 205 or 405 is almost certain proof that the trailing arm bearings on one side (the "low" one) are rusting away and that is the cause of the drop. For example, on my 405, the car became so low - due only to bearing dissolution - that the car actually bottomed out sometimes with my 3 kids in the back (which it has not done since I replaced the bearings in 2002, and the kids are even heavier now!).

    Jack the car up on one side at a time at the rear and have a really good test for play in the wheel (handbrake off). ANY play-like movement at all is most likely due to dissolving needle bearings (due to rust). If a friend can look under the car when you're feeling the play, it can be easily seen where the movement is.

    Generally it's the innermost bearing that goes first. That causes the rear to drop by about 4+ cm in a 405 when all the needle bearings have dissolved. If your car is at this stage, kiss the cross-member goodbye.

    I still think the 205 GTI is a half-decent investment, as cars go, and worth saving.

  14. #14
    Fellow Frogger! michaelh's Avatar
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    plasmapug,
    mine is a sorrento green with the dickey rear spoiler on it - and you?
    the car has spent the last couple of days with bill macnamee of PAC who, in consultation with jim have worked out that:
    1.)My RHS inner and outer bearings were completely stuffed. bill showed me them afterwards and they were completely disintegrated which has no doubt resulted in some damage to the 'tube' it all sits in.
    2.)Fitting of new new bearings has improved the situation dramatically. The car now sits at much closer to its normal height and no longer rubs or bottoms out.
    3.)Jim should be able to supply replacement shafts, which when coupled with new bearings for the LHS and a good clean up of the 'tube' should result in a near 100% result for considerably less than $4000. Now I just have to wait until Jim can supply Bill with the appropriate parts.

    i believe the car you're referring to that was on the PAC website about a year ago had a complete rear rebuild done at alpine.

    BTW plasmapug, which pug is yours? you don't park at ANU do you?

  15. #15
    Member plasmapug's Avatar
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    Tippet,

    That's what I find confusing. The lean is to the right (and rear) but it's the left trailing arm bearing that has the play. I'm going to get both bearings replaced soon anyway so I will report back with the state of the old bearings once it gets pulled apart. Maybe it's so far gone....I hope not.

    Cheers,
    Pete
    ------------------------------
    '88 205GTi

  16. #16
    Member plasmapug's Avatar
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    Michael,

    Mine is a silver s2 also with the dickey rear spoiler! And yes, I am at the ANU, I keep seeing yours parked near the chancelry. It's the one with the 15" rims right? There are actually a few 205s at the ANU.

    I saw Jim last weekend and he had a look. I'm planning on turning up to the PAC meeting on Tuesday so I can finally meet Bill and get this thing fixed! Hopefully it's still at the stgae where I won't need a new beam.

    Pete

    Quote Originally Posted by michaelh
    plasmapug,
    mine is a sorrento green with the dickey rear spoiler on it - and you?

    BTW plasmapug, which pug is yours? you don't park at ANU do you?
    ------------------------------
    '88 205GTi

  17. #17
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    Icon9

    Quote Originally Posted by M. Tippett
    Nope, a leaning 205 or 405 is almost certain proof that the trailing arm bearings on one side (the "low" one) are rusting away and that is the cause of the drop. For example, on my 405, the car became so low - due only to bearing dissolution - that the car actually bottomed out sometimes with my 3 kids in the back (which it has not done since I replaced the bearings in 2002, and the kids are even heavier now!).

    Jack the car up on one side at a time at the rear and have a really good test for play in the wheel (handbrake off). ANY play-like movement at all is most likely due to dissolving needle bearings (due to rust). If a friend can look under the car when you're feeling the play, it can be easily seen where the movement is.

    Generally it's the innermost bearing that goes first. That causes the rear to drop by about 4+ cm in a 405 when all the needle bearings have dissolved. If your car is at this stage, kiss the cross-member goodbye.

    I still think the 205 GTI is a half-decent investment, as cars go, and worth saving.
    Now I'm really scared! Thanks for the info Mr. Tippett, do you have any idea how many km's this is expected to occur? My 205 has almost done 140k km's.

    Please give me some good news!

    Everyone see this? http://www.drive.com.au/used/search/...&pg=1&pp=1&d=0 I bet it's sloping! Who could depart with this!

    cheers,

    Pepe
    Last edited by Pepe; 23rd April 2004 at 10:15 PM.
    "Times have changed since the 205GTi. Modern society wouldn't tolerate such a focused car" Autocar magazine, 16 April 2003

  18. #18
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    Mine is a silver s2 also with the dickey rear spoiler! And yes, I am at the ANU, I keep seeing yours parked near the chancelry. It's the one with the 15" rims right? There are actually a few 205s at the ANU.
    I think there are 5, a white s1, a white s2, your silver s2, the green s3, and a black? s3 every now and then

  19. #19
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    Default bearings

    Quote Originally Posted by Pepe
    Now I'm really scared! Thanks for the info Mr. Tippett, do you have any idea how many km's this is expected to occur? My 205 has almost done 140k km's.

    Please give me some good news!
    Pepe
    It's hard to generalise, depends upon how/where the car is used - in my 405 they probably started dissolving at 150,000 km, and it was repaired (a wee bit late) at about 240,000. I ignored the clunking too long...do it now!
    -Mike

  20. #20
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    yep, there is a black one as well owned by an ex-engineering student. nice car - I almost bought this one when I was looking for a car last year. ilek300 and plasmapug, maybe we should apply for union funding and form a 205Gti appreciation society or at the very least get together one weekend for a bit of a drive (once all our rear ends are in order!)
    michael

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