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Since having my tires changed, I've been hearing a clunking sound from what sounds like the back driver side of my car.

This noise only comes when the brakes are applies softly, just enough to slow the car down.

Breaking hard, driving normally or accelerating doesn't cause this either. I'm thinking that the changing of the tires has been done incorrectly, but I want to go back to the shop with knowledge.

The vehicle is a Honda Civic SI '05 with standard 15" wheel tires. I'm fairly certain that I have disks on all four wheels. I'd be surprised if it had drums on the back.

  • I assume you have disc brakes? – Kromster Sep 29 '11 at 11:48
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    How many clunks do you hear? You say you hear them when gently applying the brakes, so does the clunking continue as long as you keep the brakes on? If so, does the frequency of the clunks change with the speed of the car? – William Cline Sep 29 '11 at 15:12
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    This might be related: mechanics.stackexchange.com/questions/2035/… – William Cline Sep 29 '11 at 15:13
  • @WilliamCline The clunks are constant as long as I have the brake pedal pressed slightly. The frequency does change with speed, being slower as my speed decreases. – canadiancreed Sep 29 '11 at 21:36
  • @canadiancreed Did you just have your brakes done? If so, the link above could help you find your problem. – FossilizedCarlos Oct 3 '11 at 5:17
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It could be incorrectly torqued wheels, loose disc brake calipers, brake pad shims, suspension pieces loading/unloading from the weight shift. If they just did the tires, take it back and tell them to take a look (for free).

Try slowing the car down with the engine. If it's manual, just downshift. If it is automatic, shift the selector to one of the lower gears at speed to force the transmission to downshift. See if the clunk happens. If so, it's probably suspension. If not, brakes.

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Sounds like either you've got a warped brake disk or some kind of crud (possibly brake pad) stuck to the disk. Is it the same wheel your hand brake is connected to? Just wondering if you possibly got your brakes hot then parked and applied your hand brake. If so, that could have deposited a wad of brake pad on the disk. It should be easy enough to check, just pull the wheel (and possibly the splash guard on the other side) and take a look. If you jack up the whole back end and put the car in neutral, you might be able to rotate the wheel on the other side and see if the noisy brake disk is warped, but I wouldn't swear to it. Probably best to take it to a brake shop and have them take a look at it, since you'll probably want to have the disk resurfaced or replaced anyway. If it is just some pad material, it'll eventually wear off, but it's always better to be sure when dealing with brakes.

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