Do You Hear a Grinding Noise When Accelerating? Here’s The Reason

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grinding noise when accelerating

Your car is built and designed with components that are constantly in motion once switched on. When you hear that annoying and disturbing grinding noise when accelerating, it’s your car crying for help, that something is wrong.

Therefore, as a vehicle owner, it is important that you know the difference between a normal noise from a noise that is out of the ordinary. When accelerating, any unusual grinding noise may indicate issues with your car’s transmission, constant-velocity joints (CV joints), differential, alternator bearing, wheel bearings, engine support or mounting, or other rotating parts.

There are 6 main reasons why you may hear grinding noise when accelerating, they are:

  1. Faulty wheel bearing
  2. Differential issues
  3. CV joint damage
  4. Failing altenator
  5. Bad engine mounts
  6. Transmission issues

Finding out where the grinding noise is coming from is a challenge, especially if you don’t have a clue about what you’re dealing with. Grinding noises are associated with any rotating or spinning parts or system.

Any part that spins can cause a grinding noise when it is not functioning correctly or when something on its components is damaged.

To avoid these minor grinding noise issues getting into a bigger problem, it’s a smart move to get it taken care of and repaired as soon as possible. Continue reading below to find out more.

Reasons Why A Car Makes A Grinding Noise When Accelerating

You’re probably reading this article because your car makes that grinding noise when accelerating. Each of these possible causes listed below will sound differently, and they will manifest themselves uniquely while you drive.

While some of these repairs may leave you no choice but to spend money, other repairs can be fast and straightforward to do on your own. Here are some things you need to learn to correctly diagnose and eliminate that irritating grinding sound when you accelerate.

Faulty Wheel Bearing

Your car’s wheel bearing is an integral element of the structure of a wheel that links the wheel to the axle. Wheel bearings enable your vehicle’s wheels to move with a minor level of friction possible.

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A grinding sound may indicate that one or more of your car’s wheel bearing is worn out or damaged when accelerating or turning. This can have an adverse effect on your car’s steering and stability and cause uneven tire wear. 

Solution

If it is confirmed that your car has a damaged wheel bearing, the simplest solution is to replace it. Fortunately, it’s not a difficult task, which means you can DIY it if you’re confident you know how to. Make sure to watch the video below for detailed instructions.

Estimated Cost

If you can do it yourself, it will cost between $60 up to $150 to replace a damaged wheel bearing, relying on the kind of car you own. In contrast, a mechanic will usually charge about $300 to replace your worn-out wheel bearing.

Differential Issues

A differential is the component of your powertrain that enables varied speeds for your’ car’s wheels. If this were not possible, your car’s handling would be erratic and unsafe. Technically, a differential divides the engine’s power across the wheels, enabling them to revolve at various rates.

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When it is not functioning correctly, you may hear a whining noise. However, when the condition develops, it may begin to make a grinding noise. When this occurs, it indicates something is wrong with your car differential’s mechanical gears.

Solution

Unfortunately, if your car’s differential is already making a grinding sound, you will very certainly need to replace it entirely.

If it is merely producing a whining noise, it could be just low on differential gear oil, which lubricates the gears to prevent them from scraping against one another.

Estimated Cost

A car’s differential replacement cost ranges between $1,500 up to $4,000. However, if the issue is a fluid leak, the repair will cost between $70 up to $150. These costs still depend on the make and model of your car.

Constant-velocity or CV Joint Damage

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Constant-velocity joints or CV joints are the components that link the transmission to your car’s wheels. They are typically seen on front wheels.

If your car makes noise when accelerating slowly and making a sharp turn, it is most likely to have a malfunctioning CV joint. These sounds or noises often sound like a clicking, banging, or grinding sound.

Additionally, you may experience vibrations when driving and oil on the inner surface of the wheels. It would be best if you rethink running a car with a faulty CV joint since you might lose control of the car while running and put yourself at risk.

Solution

The only option to fix a failing CV joint is to replace it. You can bring it to your trusted mechanic to take care of it. However, if you know the procedures, you have time, and you’re inclined to put in the action, you can be able to DIY it.

Estimated Cost

A brand new CV joint part will usually cost between $150 up to $500, plus the mechanic’s labor will probably cost around $500 up to $800.

If you’re able to DIY the job, it will save you far more money, between $95 up to $210, depending on the kind of car you own.

Failing Alternator

You may hear a few unusual sounds if your alternator is failing. When you accelerate your car, you may hear a minor rattling or grinding sound. This might be produced by a loose or faulty bearing of your car’s alternator.

On the other hand, if you hear a continual loud whine while running, this is often an indication that your alternator is not distributing enough energy throughout your car.

Solution

Typically, when this happens, the alternator’s bearing is loose. The mechanic must check out any other possible causes of the problem, including timing belt issues.

Once the alternator bearing is discovered to be the problem, it must be replaced, since a loose bearing can cause another damage.

Estimated Cost

Certain automobiles come equipped with alternator repair kits that range from $20 up to $50 and can be obtained at your local auto parts shop.

Labor prices vary since certain alternators are more accessible and require less time, but budget around $200 up to $600 for labor.

However, if you want to replace your alternator completely, expect to spend between $350 up to $900 for a new alternator.

Bad Engine Mounts

The typical car engine weighs around 300 pounds (sedan), and its engine mountings are responsible for keeping it in position. Because they are constructed of metal, they are prone to corrosion, making them brittle and prone to breakage or splitting.

If this occurs, your automobile can make a grinding noise when accelerating due to the engine’s shifting. As you can imagine, if your engine isn’t mounted properly, it will quickly need costly repairs due to its weight bearing down on other parts.

Solution

Fortunately, replacing an engine mounting is relatively cheap. An auto repair shop can be able to fix the issue with a spot-welding machine in less than an hour. However, if you want to replace it completely, it can take a bit longer.

Estimated Cost

Bringing your car to an auto repair shop or mechanic to replace the engine mounting will cost around $800. If you do it yourself, the parts will cost only between $100 up to $300.

Transmission Problems

When accelerating, particularly in an automatic transmission, strange loud noise typically indicates problems are coming. If it makes a grinding noise, problems have most likely already come.

A grinding noise means that the gear system has worn down when accelerating in a car equipped with an automatic transmission. And worn gears are not a good sign, not in such a complex structure where the condition of one component is directly linked to the condition of the other. 

The transmission system is very sophisticated, and they operate under extreme strain from the engine’s massive power. The tiniest damage can trigger a domino effect, which can happen very quickly!

You do not want to overlook this one in any way. The more you wait, the more expensive the repair cost will be – and transmission repair expenses are not something you would like to consider until necessary.

Solution

Being one of the most complicated car mechanisms, it is not suggested to DIY fix an automatic transmission. If your car produces a grinding noise and is determined to be the transmission, it must be taken to a qualified mechanic or transmission specialist.

Estimated cost

Transmission replacement costs around $4,000 up to $8,000, based on the car. If you are fortunate to replace your damaged transmission with a rebuilt model, the prices will probably range from around $2,500 up to $4,000—but this may vary depending on the kind of car you own.

Bear In Mind

All the parts prices and labor costs mentioned above may vary and depend on your car’s make, your location, the auto repair shop, and the mechanic. Mechanics that work independently are cheaper than in the auto repair shop or dealerships.

Conclusion

Avoid ignoring any unusual sounds you hear while driving! Especially if it’s a loud grinding noise.  Remain aware of the day and time it occurs, as well as the sound. Then, as quickly as possible, fix it or call a mechanic.

Grinding noise when accelerating is often indicative of a developing problem, and the earlier you address it, the better. However, your car may fail unexpectedly at times. Without sufficient maintenance, you risk being stuck for hours while awaiting assistance.

FAQs

Does a bad transmission make a grinding noise?

Your car’s transmission is composed of numerous components and functions. It depends where the issue is; if it’s the solenoids, a grinding noise may not be heard, however, if it’s the gear system that is damaged. There’s a big chance that’s where the grinding noise is coming from.

What would cause a grinding noise when accelerating?

There are several culprits you can blame for a grinding noise when accelerating. You have to be careful or have a good mechanic to search or diagnose what part exactly produces the grinding noise.

You don’t want to spend time and money disassembling your transmission thinking the issue is there, where in fact, the problem is somewhere else. For example, it’s from your CV joint.

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