I have a 2005 Neon and just a few weeks ago I noticed that both of the passenger struts (some call them motor mounts) were tore up and not doing much. Then every once in a while specifically when the car hadn't been running for a while and every thing was cool. When I started it up and accelerated from a stop I could hear and feel a type of rattling that seems to be coming from under the hood. This only seemed to happen at low speeds when I was accelerating and applying relatively higher torque to the wheels. I could put it in neutral and the rattling would stop. Even when I reved it in neutral there wouldn't be the rattling vibration I felt before.
So I replaced the 2 upper and lower passenger struts that I could visually see were tore up and now the problem is worse and the vibration/rattling happens more often and consistently.
I'm really not sure whats going on, but right now my guess is that it is the transmission mount?? or motor mount?? or both??
I'm leaning towards transmission mount because of 2 reasons: 1. It only seems to vibrate/rattle when it is in gear accelerating. 2. Possibly the replacement of the engine struts positioned the transmission side of the vehicle to rattle more because of the added stability?
So my question is... Does anyone know what else it might be ? And does anyone have any info on how to go about replacing the transmission mount? Or at least testing to see if its broken?
Thanks in advanced for the help
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Once the torque struts go bad, the motor mount will get ruined much more quickly. There's a very good chance it is the motor mount itself. A bad motor mount will cause vibrations while accelerating, badly, amongst other awesome noises.
The torque struts do need to be aligned though. Did you do that?
No I didn't align the torque struts when I put them in, there didn't seem to be much aligning possible or even needed. It all fit together very easily. Both the top and bottom one just slid right on. I'm not even sure how you could align them because they each are just 2 bolts... one to the frame and one to the engine.
I'm also curious why you think its just the main motor mount and not the transmission mount?
I haven't seen any info on here for the transmission mount. I'm guessing I'm gonna have to remove the battery cover and fuse box if I want to look at it.
Should I just focus on the motor mount first? and if that doesn't work go to the transmission mount?
There's a link to the torque strut alignment in my signature. Check it out
Why do I think it's the motor mount? Personal experience and a few years worth of seeing it as the answer to very similar problems. I've got an explanation somewhere, but the Cliffnotes of it is when the torque struts go bad, the engine can now torque and the result is a torn motor mount.
Alright, Just an update for darthroush and anyone else's who finds this thread with similar problems...
After I replaced the torque struts myself, the problem didn't go away (maybe got a little worse). I decided I was tired of the time and effort this was taking me even though I was pretty confident it was either the Tranny mount or motor mount or both. So I saved myself the time and took it into AAMCO. I think the guy made a mistake when he quoted the time for replacement of both the Transmission mount and Motor mount. Because I got a smoking deal on it. About $400 total for both mounts and labor and also I had a sway bar bolt that was sheared and they fixed as well.
Anyway. When they initially fixed it the guy only replaced the Transmission mount, because he didn't realize where the other main motor mount was. They called me and said it was done. I test drove it and the problem was still there. I took a look at what they replaced and saw that the Transmission mount they took out wasn't in the best shape but It still looked fully functional. I told them they missed the other mount (main motor mount on the passenger side), and pointed it out to them. They said sorry and got on with replacing that one. Later that day they called me back and said they were done. This time when I test drove it it was A LOT BETTER. The clanking vibration is gone and seemed to drive a lot smoother. The sound was pretty horrible, and not something you like hearing from an engine.
So when all was said and done... I probably just need to replace the motor mound and the upper and lower torque struts. Although I'm glad I have a new transmission mount on there that shouldn't go bad for a while.
Like darthroush said, The motor mount seems to be failing point on neons causing some serious unsettling noises and vibrations.
Thanks again darthroush. And I hope this helps someone else.