What’s That Knocking Noise From Front Wheel When Driving My Car?

Ever found yourself in a situation where noises degrade the feel of the moment? Noises are disappointing and can hamper any enjoyable experience. While driving, noises act as a distraction. A driver who can’t focus on the road because of a weird noise degrades the safety standards of the drive. A knocking noise from front wheel when driving your car is audible because of faults or malfunctions. Therefore, it is advised to get your vehicle checked under professional guidance.

A knocking noise usually initiates from the front part of your vehicle. The fact that the noise is audible to the driver indicates that the noise is coming from the front section. A knock might be an overheating issue after a long drive. Furthermore, the engine cooling down might sound like a knocking noise. The problem is not complex if the knocking noise is occasionally heard but it can be a serious issue if you hear frequent noises from the front wheel of your car.

What Is The Reason Behind The Knocking Noise?

Your car has a complex structure that functions along with various forces. These forces can be electric, thermal, or hydraulic in nature. Such a complex structure can make noises because of mild discrepancies. There can be various sources of this knocking noise from the front wheel.

1. Worn Out Bushings

Bushings work like the suspension of your vehicle. They keep the vehicle aligned during the operation stage. These bushings degrade over time. Therefore, a car equipped with worn-out bushings will make a considerably audible knocking noise. The bushings cause this noise as a result of metal contacting metal during the drive.

2. Loose Hubcap

The hubcap or the wheel cover is usually considered an insignificant component for the car. However, the hubcap serves its purpose by protecting the wheel from excessive dust. The wheel cover makes your car look good. It basically covers the wheel of your car to make your car look less rusty. A wheel cover is held in position by wheel fasteners. A knocking noise from front wheel when driving with a loose wheel cover is expected. The hubcap constantly hits the wheel fasteners and the noise is initiated.

3. Loose Suspension

A suspension mechanism is the most conventional component of a car. It functions to provide balance to the wheels. The mechanism is simply based on maximizing the friction between the wheels and the road. A loose suspension system indicates that your car is unable to establish balance. Consequently, the wheels don’t function in proper sync with the road and the knocking noise is audible.

4. Axle Problems

The axle of your car is a complex structure. It holds both the front wheels together and balances them. A car axle can make a knocking noise when something is stuck to it. Usually, hitting your car somewhere or running over a bad pothole result in dust and debris over the axle. The axle handles the entire front weight of your vehicle. A damaged axle is a major problem as it hampers the alignment of the front section of the car, hence, getting your car’s axle checked is advised.

5. Faulty Ball Joints

Ball joints are the connecting components between the wheels and the suspension of your car. They regulate the car’s motion when the driver makes a turn. Basically, the ball joints ensure that the wheels adjust themselves per the steering wheel. A faulty ball joint is a result of normal wear and tear over time. A driver can easily judge a knocking noise from the ball joints. If the noise is clearly audible during a sharp turn, it indicates that the ball joints are not functioning as they are expected to.

What To Do When I Hear A Knocking Noise From Front Wheel When Driving My Car?

You must be wondering about how to get rid of this disappointing noise. A few simple repairs and fixes might help your vehicle. Sometimes, the problem can be much more complex. Any fault relating to the axle of your vehicle should be fixed on priority as it can be dangerous for your vehicle.

1. Repairing Wheel Bearings

Wheel bearings function to provide freedom to the wheels during movement. As a component of the most exposed part of your vehicle, wheel bearings are prone to dust and debris. These obstacles might cause a knocking noise when the wheel gets in contact with them. The bearings should be checked and cleaned at regular intervals. Complex damage to your wheel bearings calls for a replacement which is an easy process under professional guidance.

2. Inspecting The Axle

The axle of your car has a complex function to perform. It holds the front section together while ensuring that the wheels in the front are aligned properly. A dusty axle can be a reason behind a knocking noise. Fixing this is a simple process of getting your axle cleaned. However, in case of a crash or accident, the axle might bend. A knocking noise from front wheel when driving with a bent axle is a common scenario. Unfortunately, a bent axle cannot be repaired. The only solution in such a case is to replace the bent axle with a new one.

3. Replacing Struts

Struts are the building blocks of your car’s suspension mechanism. Therefore, a problem with the struts is a problem with the suspension. Struts have a rather conventional function to perform. They reduce the sound and vibration which is generated by the wheels during a drive. Broken struts are unable to reduce this noise and a knocking noise is audible. Damaged struts need to be replaced because, firstly, they help you get rid of the noise, and secondly, they upgrade the driving experience by reducing the vibrations in your car.

4. Installing The Hubcap Properly

This might be the simplest solution to try in case of a knocking noise. The hubcap should be inspected for loose-fitting and fixed accordingly. This practice ensures that the wheel covers don’t hit the fasteners and the noise is eliminated.

Expected Cost Of Replacements

Your car might need a new axle if a related problem is diagnosed. The cost for installing a new front axle would be around $500 to $600.

A new set of wheel bearings is easily available for around $250 to $500. This cost includes the average labor expenses.

New struts for your car will cost you around $600 to $700 and this might prove as the fix that your car needs, to get rid of the knocking noise.


A dull noise is usually ignored by the vehicle owners. However, overlooking a noise from the front section of your car is not advised. There might be a serious problem with the wheel alignment or the suspension system. Therefore, if you hear a knocking noise from the front wheel when driving a car that feels completely normal, get it checked by a mechanic.

Stay safe and keep driving

Thank you

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