Ford F150 Front End Noise When Turning? 12 Causes And Solutions To Fix It!

Front wheel leaning inward at top
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Do you hear a sharp noise from the front end when turning your Ford F150? If yes, welcome to the place where you will learn all about this strange noise your Ford F150 has been producing lately.

Ford F150 front end noise when turning is not a commonly encountered problem. However, there can be many reasons for it.

You might not be able to identify them in the first go, assuming you are here since the issue of F150 front end noise when turning has been bothering you for quite a long time.

The reason for Ford F150 front end noise when turning would be worn shocks, damaged differential gears, malfunctioning IWE vacuum solenoid valve, IWE vacuum leak, faulty power steering pump, damaged suspension bushings, worn ball joints, damaged tie-rods, worn brake pads, bad wheel bearings, and bad CV joints or it could be dry jounce bushings.

If you are experiencing front end noise in your Ford F150 when turning, then you are at the right place. Stay tuned to know everything to fix the problem!

Ford F150 Front End Noise When Turning? 12 Causes And Solutions To Fix It!

In normal circumstances, turning does not produce any sound. It is supposed to be smooth and seamless. However, the production of sound is indicative of a problem.

This problem might be due to stress. Many parts of the Ford F150 experience stress in sharp turns, leading to sound generation. This sound is not very disturbing. However, a creaking, whining, groaning, or any other unusual noise may indicate a serious problem.

Below are a few commonly suspected reasons for Ford F150 front end noise when turning.

Worn shocks

Worn shocks are something that an experienced driver can notice before it becomes noticeable. But don’t worry if you are not experienced enough.

There still are a few signs that can make worn shocks visible to all. You will notice fluid on the sides of the front shocks if you notice closely.

The leaking fluid is a sign of worn shocks. It indicates that the dampening fluid has leaked and hence the shock won’t perform its damping function effectively and it starts creating noise at the front end when turning.

Generally, shocks are very good at their job. It is until they wear out, they lose their functioning ability.  It is necessary to inspect and replace the worn-out shocks with a fresh ones as soon as the issue is identified.

Damaged differential gears

The differential has got several parts to ensure that the left and right wheels run at different speeds while negotiating the turns.

The differential clutch plates and gears are the parts that need frequent maintenance since it is the worn-out clutch plates and gears that make the front end noise when turning.

Apart from clutch plates, a low level of differential fluid also leads to insufficient lubrication and hence starts making a grinding noise when taking turns.

Typically, the transfer of noise causes the sound to appear to be coming from the front but the problem even though lies at the rear differential end. Hence inspect the differential gears and replace them with new one if found worn-out.

Malfunctioning IWE vacuum solenoid valve

The IWE (Integrated Wheel End) typically has several parts like a front hub assembly, a front drive shaft, a lock hub actuator, and a vacuum solenoid valve.

In the case of the ford F150 with the 4WD, when you select 4H mode, vacuum pressure to the hub actuator is released and the hub actuator is completely engaged to lock the drive and hub gears for 4WD.

When you select the 2H mode, the vacuum pressure is applied to the hub actuator that disengages the hub actuator and hence the 4WD.

By selecting the 4H or 2H modes, typically, a vacuum solenoid valve is operated to either apply or release vacuum pressure to the hub actuator. But when the vacuum solenoid valve malfunctions, the partial disengagement of hub gears causes the front end grinding noise when turning or running slow.

To confirm the faulty valve, first put the selector in 2H mode, wait for the noise, and when you start experiencing the noise when turning, put the vehicle in 4H mode.

If the noise goes off in 4H mode, it indicates that the partial disengagement of hubs in 2H mode caused by a malfunctioning vacuum solenoid valve causes the front-end noise when turning.

If you are experiencing noise when turning for a long time, then you might have permanently damaged the IWE gears, hence it is recommended to replace the entire IWE instead of just replacing the faulty vacuum solenoid valve alone.

People often think of bypassing Ford F150 4X4 actuator instead of replacing the faulty vacuum solenoid valve but it has its own demerit of impact on fuel efficiency due to continuous 4WD engagement.

IWE vacuum leak

The ford F150 front end noise when turning or running slow can also happen due to a vacuum leak in the line connected to the IWB.

You could hear F150 hub actuator noise caused by the partial disengagement of the hub actuator with the wheel hub in 2H drive mode.

The failure mechanism will be similar to a malfunctioning vacuum solenoid valve.   

A leaky vacuum line would cause partial disengagement of the hub with the drive end gears due to less vacuum pressure application to the hub actuator and that results in F150 front end noise when turning.

It is recommended to test on a worst-case steep upgradient where the engine vacuum levels are minimal to simulate the problem effectively.

You need to thoroughly inspect the vacuum line starting from the vacuum pump to the vacuum reservoir and the line to the hub actuator.

Replacing the vacuum hose lines with a new ones is a simple fix to get rid of the noise when turning.

Faulty power steering pump

A whining noise produced by the Ford F150 when turning can also indicate a damaged power steering pump.

Not only the power steering pump but also the rack and belt often have issues that cause the Ford F150 to make front whining noise while turning.

It does not produce the creaking sound that many people confuse it with. Hence inspect and replace the faulty power steering pump with a good fresh one.

Damaged suspension bushings

Suspension Bush is an essential part of the suspension. It is an elastic part that fits between most of the suspension parts.

Just like shocks, suspension bushings also wear out over time. Often cracked or damaged suspension bushings produce a front end creaking noise when turning.

Many people fail to identify that the bushings need replacement. A trustworthy Indicator of bushing replacement is that the bushings allow more movement. You may also experience poor handling of the steering in this case.

Torn ball joints

In vehicles, a ball joint is a bearing that connects the control arms to the steering knuckles. In this way, a ball joint helps adjust the vehicle’s movement.

A ball joint needs to be adequately lubricated to do its job. However, the grease of the ball joint often wears out over time.

In such scenarios, your Ford F150 can make noise at the front end when turning, which indicates a lack of lubrication at the ball joints or a bad torn ball joints that need to be replaced.

Damaged tie rod ends

Tie rod ends are a fragment of the steering system. They connect the spindle on which the front wheel is mounted to the steering gear mechanism.

They are slightly different from the ball joints and help rotate the wheel while turning the steering wheel.

If turning the steering wheel produces a noise when turning your Ford F510, then it is most likely that the tie rod ends are damaged.

The clicking sound on turning is highly indicative of damaged tie rod ends. However, you may also hear knocking when making sharp and tight turns.

A worn-out tie rod end may also be indicated by an inability to steer, a misaligned front end, or excessive tire wear.  You need to thoroughly analyze the tie-rod ends and lubricate or replace tie rod ends if required.

Dry jounce bushing

Jounce bushing is located on the front struts of the car. They go dry very easily and require constant lubrication.

If not, they produce a sharp squeaking sound when your Ford F150 takes a turn. Dry jounce bushing is a problem that needs to be addressed in time.

Otherwise, it may intensify over time. Constant lubrication and replacement are the two practical solutions to dry jounce bushing.

Worn brake pads

The brake pads are the parts that are going to undergo wear and tear during braking. But once the brake pads are worn out the metal part of the brake pads comes in direct contact with the metal rotor and rubs together to create a grinding noise when turning.

Low brake fluid levels can also cause noise when turning. You need to open the brake pads and observe the amount of wear and tear on the brake pads and replace them if required.

Bad wheel bearings

The wheel bearings are the parts that prevent friction between rotating parts like axles and wheels. When the wheel bearings go bad, it starts creating noise when turning.

Rough handling and driving patterns are the typical reasons that would make the wheel bearings go bad.

You may also notice uneven tire wear once the wheel bearings go bad. When the wheel bearings are failing, you would notice that there is no grease or any lubrication left in the bearings.

You can easily replace the bad wheel bearings by simply removing the tire assembly and brake pads.

Bad CV joints

The CV joints are the parts that transfer engine power to the wheels. The CV joints have got external splines that fit on the corresponding internal splines on the transmission on one end and wheels on the other end.

When the vehicle goes over uneven surfaces, the CV joints undergo sliding movement and absorb the distance variation between the engine’s transmission and the wheel.

But when there is no lubrication at the spline sliding interface and the CV joints go bad over a period of running, it could eventually create a front end sliding noise when turning your ford F150. Hence the torn CV joints need to be replaced with a new one to get rid of noise.

Final Thoughts

You must have noticed above that all the problems require careful examination and lubrication of the moving parts or replacement.

Lubrication reduces the friction between moving parts and helps in reducing wear, tear, and part damage apart from preventing your Ford F150 from making front end noise when turning.

However, damages to tie rod ends, ball joints, power steering pumps, brake pads, CV joints, and wheel bearings are more serious and require more advanced care than lubrication.

These are critical components that need attention since the failure of these parts would make the vehicle inoperable. The prime part of the vehicle that is expected to be problematic is the suspension or the brakes.

While troubleshooting ensure that the noise source is differentiated from other engine noises, otherwise you would end up replacing parts that are functioning well.

Is your Ford F150 due for scheduled maintenance? Then it is time to take your car for checkups.   In short, you must keep your Ford F150 up-to-date, well-maintained, and well-taken care of to avoid unexpected noises on turning.

Long-term neglect and no maintenance led to various long-term problems, including front end noise on turning. Good maintenance and professional inspection of the vehicle go a long way.

If you ensure timely maintenance, there are no chances of your Ford F150 making noises on turning.

After troubleshooting, if you have identified a faulty part that contributes to the long-term problem of the Ford F150 making noise, then it might not only require simple lubrication or care.

This might be your sign to replace that malfunctioning part with the new one and resolve the problem once and for all.

There are chances that the Ford F150 front end noise when turning might not be due to any of the reasons mentioned above.

It is important to rule out any other underlying causes that may create a problem. There might be problems with the engine, the air conditioning system, or the steering fluid.

If you are not able to pinpoint the trouble area or root cause then take your Ford F150 to a professional mechanic to resolve the noise issue.

To solve the problem of your Ford F150 making noises while turning, you must first identify the reason behind the noises. The rest is just a piece of cake if you successfully do this.

Happy Motoring!




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