The Different Sounds Your Vehicle Makes and What They Mean

The Different Sounds Your Vehicle Makes and What They Mean

The engineering involved in a car is intricate and complex. There are numerous parts of the vehicle that work all at once while it’s on, and you will hear multiple different noises that have a cause or meaning. Identifying these noises will help you understand your vehicle and determine if you need to make repairs. These are the different sounds your vehicle makes and what they mean.

Normal Humming

Well-maintained vehicles with no damage will make a humming noise. This noise comes from the engine powering the car; the cylinders in the engine are in constant movement, creating fuel from the gas in the combustion chamber. These continuous movements and reactions give the machine the roar, purr, or humming that people know. If you hear any additional noises, especially in other parts of the car away from the engine, you will want to inspect the cause of the noise.


One of the sounds your car may make is metallic rattling that sounds as if someone is hitting an object in a fast-paced motion. A rattling noise may mean that your vehicle’s exhaust pipe is loose and rattles as its exhaust blows through it.

It’s also possible that the muffler lost a piece in the exhaust system and rattled around in the pipe. If you don’t resolve this issue, toxic fumes may leak into the car’s cabin, or smoke may trail behind you, leading to accidents and eventual injury.


The sound of squeaking or squealing is typical in most vehicles. This noise could be from the brakes as you activate them while slowing down.

There won’t be as much friction if the brakes wear down, preventing them from stopping. It’s essential to service your breaks twice a year to prevent them from losing all friction or malfunctioning while on the road.

If you notice a squeal when you start the vehicle, the drive belt may be loose. A loose drive belt is an easy car problem you can fix. If you notice the squeaking after you have finished your repairs, take the car into the shop.


Among the different sounds your vehicle makes, clunking is another typical sound. If you hear or feel a clunk when you drive on bumpy roads or hit a pothole, there is a chance that you have a broken suspension. The suspension is essential to the vehicle’s ability to maintain control and balance when going over uneven terrain.

You will need to have this repaired as soon as possible to ensure you don’t suffer permanent damage to your suspension or vehicle. The problem may be the shocks within the suspension that push the car up.

Your vehicle is sometimes challenging to understand; many parts and pieces make it run. Using this knowledge of potential sounds will help you know what causes problems in the future.