Get those bowling ball noises checked out while your car is still under warranty!

Dear Car Talk

Dear Car Talk | Jun 01, 1995

Dear Tom and Ray:

We have a 1994 Mercury Sable without anti lock brakes. When the brakes are applied going forward or backwards, it sounds like there are bowling balls rolling around in the trunk. My husband mentioned it to the mechanic, but nothing was done about it. My husband refuses to go back to the dealer and the warranty is about to run out. Is this grounds for divorce or what!?

TOM: You have to take it back to the dealer, Charlotte. This is one of those problems that's probably easy to fix, but difficult to find. In which case, you definitely want Mercury to pick up the labor costs under warranty.

RAY: It sounds to me like the noise that bad suspension bushings make, although it's unusual for them to be worn out on such a new car.

TOM: The other possibility is that there is something loose in one of the body panels. Something may have fallen off inside a panel. Or your car might have been made on bowling night, and one of the assembly line workers left his bowling ball in there.

RAY: If you can't convince your reluctant husband to go back to the dealer, take the car back yourself. They can have somebody jog alongside the car and listen to the noise as the brakes are applied. Once they figure out where the noise is coming from, I'm sure they'll be able to fix it for you.

TOM: And the only way it could be grounds for divorce is if the noise IS caused by bowling balls in the trunk, and they belong to your husband and his girlfriend.

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