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Discussion Starter #1
Thumping / rumbling noise from rear - 2001 Outback LLBean H6-3.0

There is a very brief rapid thumping/rumbling noise
- comes from the right rear
- occurs when driving over sharp rise in road at speeds over 45-50mph
- when making long right turns like on a freeway onramp
- occurs only when the vehicle is extended highest on the suspension
- when rear struts are fully extended
- and only when the car is empty of any extra weight load/cargo/passengers

thumps/rumbles noise at various speeds, and the sound varies with speed

The noise has become easier to reproduce, sounds like its getting louder

Mech. visual insp. found nothing in the suspension that loose or worn out.
Mech. drove the car alone & reproduced the sound, but didn't find the source of the noise.

Any ideas? Propeller shaft? Rear axle? Rear strut mount? Rear hub bearing?
 

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I would be inclined to think a bearing is failing. When they do, the noise changes pitch with speed and heat build up.

Jack the car up to get the wheel off the ground. Grab the suspension spring with one hand and roll the tire with the other. If you feel roughness, change the wheel bearing. Get a National or one from Subaru. Trust me.

If not, check the lower strut bolts and the upper mount inside the car. Just fold down the seat and remove the cargo floor cover and the mount is right there beneath the angled support mount. Have someone jounce the rear of the car and watch for excess movement in the mount and feel for "popping".

Check the lateral arm bolts. The outer bolts hold it to the base of the spindle, the inner bolts have the eccentric bolts for setting the "toe" of the rear wheels. Look close at the bushings on the inside end of the arms. They will rot and allow for the arms to move in/out, up/down. If the bushings are shot, buy replacement arms from Subaru. If the bushing in the spindle end are shot, those are replaceable with a press.

Same with the forward radius arm bushings.

Sway bar links???? Anyone check those??
 

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Discussion Starter #3
yeah, cardoc, I think you're right, it's probably a bearing. Drove it today totally empty, with the back seat down, and thought I heard that telltale humming sound like a couple months ago when the L-front bearing was trashed. I'll take all your suggestions and go through & check it all out.
thanks!
 

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yeah, cardoc, I think you're right, it's probably a bearing. Drove it today totally empty, with the back seat down, and thought I heard that telltale humming sound like a couple months ago when the L-front bearing was trashed. I'll take all your suggestions and go through & check it all out.
thanks!
At least the rear bearing is easier to replace.
 
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