Common Car Noises & What They Mean

2021 Chevy Traverse EXT driving on a dirt road

If you’ve ever been driving through Omaha and wondered “what was that car noise?” then Sid Dillon Chevrolet Fremont is here for you! Your vehicle runs a number of electronic and mechanical systems to assist you through your day, but for the most part, your commute should be silent. If you’ve noticed a new or recurring car noise on your vehicle, Sid Dillon Chevrolet Fremont has written a guide on the most common car noises and what you should do about them. Read more about the causes of car noises below, or contact our team if you’re concerned about a specific noise your vehicle is making.

Car Noises & Their Meaning

Car noises can come out of nowhere as you drive in Columbus. Sometimes the cause is easy to identify – like if you hit a pothole – but other times they just occur during your regular commute. When you hear a new car noise, take a good listen to it, then consult our list below to see if it’s a common problem!

A Ticking Noise While your Car is Idle

Likely Culprit: Low oil levels

If you hear ticking while your car is stopped or idling, you’re most likely low on oil. Check your oil levels and either add more oil or schedule an oil change with our team. Oil is an essential fluid to your vehicle’s system, and driving with low oi levels will cause irreparable damage to your engine.

Screeching Sound from Under the Hood

Likely Culprit: A loose or worn serpentine belt

The serpentine belt in your vehicle is vital to your engine, alternator, and many other important parts. To put it simply: your car won’t run without it. When you hear a screeching sound under the hood, bring your vehicle to our service center to have your belt inspected or replaced.

Grinding or Squealing Brakes

Likely Culprit: Worn out brake pads

The brakes on your vehicle have a built-in wear indicator that will emit a high-pitched squealing when it’s time for them to be replaced. If you’re hearing a grinding noise, then your calipers could be rubbing against your vehicle’s rotors. Both of these situations will require a visit to our repair facility ASAP. Take any issues or sounds from your brakes seriously, since they are essential to your safety on Fremont roads.

The Car is VERY Loud

Likely Culprit: Muffler

If your vehicle is exceptionally loud, the muffler is most likely the cause. When a muffler is worn out or rusted through, it can no longer dampen the loud noise coming from your vehicle’s engine and exhaust system.

A Rattling, Chugging, or Hissing Noise

Likely Culprit: Exhaust system

The exhaust system can produce a variety of noises depending on the issue that’s occurring. A rattling sound could indicate that the exhaust system is loose or out of alignment. A chugging sound could indicate that it has a blockage. A hissing sound could indicate that there is a crack in the system.

Humming Sound from Under the Car

Likely Culprit: Could be multiple sources

If your car is making a humming noise, it could be a number of sources. It could be that the differential needs lubricant, your transmission is failing, or the wheel bearings or universal joints are wearing out. The best thing to do in this scenario is to pay close attention to what type of sound it is and what your vehicle is doing when the sound is made. Then, visit our service center to discuss specifics with our technicians, and they can diagnose the issue.

A Thudding Noise from Your Tires

Likely Culprit: Low air pressure or improper tire alignment

A thudding noise from your tires is indicative of low air pressure or an improper alignment. Use your TPMS system or a tire pressure gauge to check the air pressure in your tires. If your air pressure is low, add more air to your tires. If the pressure is fine, but the thudding continues, bring your vehicle in to have the tire alignment checked. Misaligned tires will wear down faster and could damage your vehicle’s suspension system.

A Clunking Sound While Driving

Likely Culprit: Shock Absorber

The shock absorber on your car helps your vehicle drive smoothly over uneven terrain. If your rides become turbulent, or you hear a clunking sound, have it checked out by a mechanic.

A Clicking Noise While Turning

Likely Culprit: Bad CV joint

If you hear a clicking sound as you make a turn, your CV joint is likely worn out. CV joints keep each axel lubricated, and when they wear out, it’s best to have it replaced ASAP instead of paying for an axel repair later on.

Scraping Noise from Windshield Wipers

Likely Culprit: Worn-out wiper blades

If your windshield wipers are making a scraping noise, streaking a lot, or jumping across your windshield, then it’s time for them to be replaced. Over time the rubber on your wiper blades will wear down, and if you wait to replace them they may scratch your windshield, leading to costly repairs.

Schedule Service with Sid Dillon Chevrolet Fremont

Whichever kind of noise you’re hearing from your vehicle, visit our Fremont service center to have your car inspected and repaired by our OEM certified team. We’ll ensure your vehicle is safe to drive and help you save with our service specials. Visit us today and get back on Blair roads in your sedan, truck, or SUV! Looking for more tips? Learn how long car batteries last with our team!

Chevy Service Coupons in Fremont

Oil Change, Tire Rotation, 27 Point Inspection

Keep your car running smoothly and identify potential trouble spots.

Includes up to 6 Qts Dexos full synthetic oil, Excludes diesels, Saab, and other select vehicles. Tire balancing not included. Tax and shop supplies not included.

10% OFF

YOU get to choose!

10% Off any Service Available in Our Service Department.

*-Max Discount of $100. -Not valid for Insurance work, warranty, or with other offers or coupons. -Tax not included.


Keep the most important system on your car running smoothly. We will install high-quality AC Delco Durastop Ceramic pads on your car.

Includes replacement of brake pads and machining rotors on most GM vehicles. Rotor replacement extra. Excludes Corvette, Saab, and other select vehicles. Retail customers only. Tax and shop supplies not included.


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Sid Dillon Chevrolet Fremont 41.45158, -96.46513.