Auto Service World
Feature   March 1, 2004   by Rich Diegle

Baffling QX4 Front End Noise

Some of the most difficult noises to pinpoint are those coming from a vehicle's front brake area. There, residing in the same postal code, are a few non- braking components that exist solely to confuse your diagnostic attempts. By employing some b...


Some of the most difficult noises to pinpoint are those coming from a vehicle’s front brake area. There, residing in the same postal code, are a few non- braking components that exist solely to confuse your diagnostic attempts. By employing some basic testing procedures, you be able to differentiate what are brake noises and what are not.

A case in point: A customer may bring their 1997-98 Infiniti QX4 to your shop, complaining of a high pitch squeal or whistle from the front brakes. This noise can be heard while driving next to a wall or guardrail where the sound is reflected. The noise is also more likely to be heard after several miles of driving with the vehicle and braking components at normal operating temperatures. The actual cause of the noise may be the front hub dust seal.

Using the following diagnostic and repair procedure, confirm that a front hub dust seal is the source of the noise, then install a countermeasure front hub baffle plate. Nissan has made these new baffle plates available to resolve these incidents. The countermeasure baffle plates are modified to also function as dust seals.

Diagnostic and Repair Procedure

NOTE: Be sure the vehicle and brakes are at normal operating temperature before proceeding.

1. To confirm the noise is not a brake pad squeal, drive the vehicle next to a wall at 10-30 mph. When you hear the high pitch squeal or whistle, lightly touch the brakes and listen for a change in the noise.

a. If the noise changes or is eliminated, the cause is likely a brake pad squeal.

b. If the noise does not change, go to step 2.

2. Remove and discard the front left and right side dust seals.

3. Replace the left and right baffle plates with the countermeasure parts (see diagram).

Nissan P/N: 41150-1W400 – Right 41160-1W400 – Left

4. Test-drive the vehicle again to verify that the repairs have solved the problem.

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Written by ALLDATA Technical Editor, Rich Diegle. Rich is an Advanced Engine Performance Certified, ASE Master Technician with an AA Degree in automotive technology and 23 years of dealership and independent shop experience.

2004 ALLDATA LLC


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