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‘22 OB Wilderness
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Unfortunately, as the title says, my five week old Outback Wilderness has developed a strange rattle in the rear. This is one of my all time biggest irks when it comes to a vehicle. I can tolerate a lot, but am extra sensitive to annoying sounds. A strange random rattle coming out of the blue on a vehicle that nearly forty grand is troublesome. Seems to be originating from the area around the passenger side tail light/ rear hatch. It just started yesterday. I had initially thought it was maybe just some debris stuck on the underside of the bumper, but I'm now many hours in and I haven't been able to narrow it down or resolve it.

It's going into the dealership tomorrow, but I don't have high hopes they'll be able to find or resolve it.

Has anyone here encountered something like this?
 

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‘22 OB Wilderness
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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Check the lap belt for the center passenger… in the owner’s manual there are directions on how to stow the buckle there at the roof on the inside. It’s likely just flopping around.
I have noticed that can be a nuisance if not stowed properly, but in this case, I have already confirmed it's not the issue. I had someone else drive my car while I laid in the back and listened. The noise is coming from the corner of the rear hatch. It's nothing below the vehicle that I can identify. Nothing in the spare tire well.
 

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Little metal cargo hooks are stowed so they don’t rattle? Did you do the test with the rear cargo cover removed?

Might try pulling the little panel on the inside on that side and see if there are any wires in the rear gate cord that are making the noise by bumping against the inside of the gate or the inside trim of the gate.

Another thing in that area is the fuel filler tube… so you have an overflow tube that is clamped onto the main filler tube, and then an evaporative emissions hose that is also clamped along there… those could rattle and maybe sound like they come from the hatch… although you’d hear that likely closer to the wheel well, not the rear hatch.

Taking lidksmy’s suggestion there - just for kicks you could remove the spare and all that stuff entirely from the spare tire well, and that would be a definitive “no” if the noise is still there….
 

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‘22 OB Wilderness
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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Little metal cargo hooks are stowed so they don’t rattle? Did you do the test with the rear cargo cover removed?

Might try pulling the little panel on the inside on that side and see if there are any wires in the rear gate cord that are making the noise by bumping against the inside of the gate or the inside trim of the gate.
All the cargo strap hooks are stowed. I removed the rear cargo cover completely to rule that out. I did actually remove the little panel on the rear hatch and I used a bit of electrical tape to secure the wires found there. No luck. The weird thing is, nothing changed, as far as the state of the objects inside the vehicle, between the previous days when the problem did not exist. The only thing that stands out is the fact that the car got filthy on the trails over the rainy weekend and got a good pressure wash bath on Sunday. So I initially just assumed there was debris leftover someplace on or under the car. I've been under the vehicle and inside the wheel wells cleaning to be sure and there's nothing left that could be rattling.
 

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Trailer hitch installed? Maybe the harness connector bumping around?

You could remove the passenger tail light and look to see if anything there is off. The little panel uncover the two small bolts that hold it in, and then it removes off of the little hooks that hold it in place by pulling it straight back from the rear of the car.
 

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2020 Onyx
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The only thing that stands out is the fact that the car got filthy on the trails over the rainy weekend
When I took my rear bumper off I found small pebbles lodged in the bracket holding the radar sensors for the blind spot monitor.
 

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By the way when you say you've been unable to narrow it down, then someone makes a suggestion and you say "I checked that" then it's a contradiction. If you've ruled things out, it's best to say what you've already done so that people don't have to drop the common things that you've already ruled out.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
By the way when you say you've been unable to narrow it down, then someone makes a suggestion and you say "I checked that" then it's a contradiction. If you've ruled things out, it's best to say what you've already done so that people don't have to drop the common things that you've already ruled out.
Yeah, I can see what you mean. Sorry. Makes it seem kind of obnoxious.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
When I took my rear bumper off I found small pebbles lodged in the bracket holding the radar sensors for the blind spot monitor.
Removing the bumper was my last resort. Hoping the dealer will do it tomorrow. If they don't, I will.

I set my phone in the back and recorded a clip while I drove. Not quite sure how to post it here.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Have you checked the license tag on the back, or if you have a tag frame, make sure that’s secure? I had a rattle on an earlier outback and ended up using all 4 screws with some nylon spacers to secure the tag. That made some weird noises.
You're definitely coming out with some great ideas. From the sounds of it, you could write an entire thread on potential rattle causing issues. In my case, I use a silicon license plate frame to prevent rattles. I think the final verdict is A. maybe the bumper needs to be removed to free some unseen and currently unreachable debris or B. the rear hatch is rattling. Maybe it is slightly out of alignment or something along those lines.

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07YZFM2FQ?psc=1&ref=ppx_yo2_dt_b_product_details
 

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To add a video you can link it to your icloud or google drive or whatever cloud service you have.
 
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When you were riding in the back, did you press against the rear hatch at different spots to try and isolate the sound? See if something makes it stop? Helps identify loose trim, maybe an adjustment to the striker that the closer motor uses to shut the hatch, hatch rubbing on the bumper fascia, etc.
 

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Hmmm. I don’t have a Gen6 to test… the closest I could come up with, while listening to the audio there, and tapping various things on the inside trim (lower sill trim, rear seat release, grocery hook, inside lower trim, fuel filler door, bumper fascia, strut rods, little covers for the backup lights)… the closest in pitch and something that would vibrate that quickly would be the little cover that is over the bolts for the rear tail light, or the light itself (maybe it’s a bit loose?) You can remove that little cover and leave it off, see if the noise goes away… it’s only held in by these goofy little plastic fasteners.

Another possibility is maybe a harness connector bumping on something… something with the fuel door maybe? The wire that locks it… isn’t there a manual release for the fuel door lock too near there?

Hard to tell how loud it would be inside the car to compare to anything though.
 

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Lets see if this works.

I could hear it well, and yeah, that would be real annoying. Walker just mentioned something about loose trim, and that sounds something like that. The last thing I heard like that in a car was when I bought some quarter molding at Home Depot, put it through the folded down seats from my trunk in my Malibu, and the *&%$!! pieces lightly tapped-tapped-tapped like that against the seatback plastic all the way home.
 

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The video worked and it sounds to me like it could be a loose endlink or some other loose metal part rattling more than a pebble in the bumper.
 
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