My 2006 Suzuki SX4 (61k miles) has just started doing something odd that makes me a bit worried. There is an oscillating, deep sound that varies with the speed that I drive. It almost sounds like the sound an unbalanced washing machine makes on spin cycle.

Sort of like "whoosh-whoosh-whoosh-whoosh", a very deep sound, oscillating at about 2 Hz when I am moving around 10 MPH, and 30 Hz or so when I'm moving around 60 MPH. Accompanied with the "whoosh" at low speeds is a noticeable lurch. The whole car seems to get caught on something whenever I hear a "whoosh".

3 months ago (before this started) I took the car in for an oil change, and I had them check the brakes and fluid levels. They said the tires were extremely bald and had dry rot, so I had them all replaced. They also said the tie rod had come loose, and had repaired it. They said the brakes were fine, but I haven't replaced them in 4ish years so I'm a bit skeptical. I'm going to take it back in soon to correct this problem and change the oil again, but I'd like some background to know what to tell them. Any ideas?

  • The imbalance could be due to a few things, but it seems like one of your cylinders might be misfiring. The thing that sounds strange is the lurching. By lurching do you mean that you feel the car hesitating or do you mean that it surges forward?
    – Zaid
    Commented May 20, 2015 at 16:37
  • Its hard to say. I feel an acceleration backwards and then forwards, almost like the car is going over a hump, or like something is dragging against the wheel. Its most noticeable when I'm at very low speeds (like coming to a stop or accelerating out of a stop). At high speeds it feels like going over a slightly bumpy/ridged road.
    – dorfy
    Commented May 20, 2015 at 16:47

1 Answer 1


FYI, I took the car to the mechanic, and the problem was warped brake rotors in the front of the car caused by worn out brake pads. Apparently I have been driving without any brake pads for many months! I had no idea since I assumed the brakes would be squealing if this was the case. All pads and rotors needed to be replaced.

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