Friday, April 22, 2011

How to fix Honda Element Clunking noise

Annoying noise coming from rear of your Element?

I switched the rubber bushings on the sway bar and the clunking noise is now gone.

1. Use 12mm socket wrench to remove left and right bushings (4 bolts). note: you don't need to remove the whole sway bar -- the rubber bushings can be removed by themselves.
2. put the left rubber bushing (item 7 in diagram below) where the right bushing was and vice versa.

See the following link for a description and diagram of the problem. See item 7 in diagrams below. The bushings look similar to the ones pictured below, and are for attaching the sway bar to the frame.

If you want to replace worn out bushings, the part number is 52306-SCV-000 for the Honda Element. This is for years 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011. The part is also referred to as "BUSH, STABILIZER HOLDER" on some part dealer websites, for example, Sons Honda. The price is about $3 per bushing.

Feel free to leave a comment if you found this helpful.

Honda Element Sway Bar Bushing Diagram
Honda Element Sway Bar Bushing Diagram with Linkage
Honda Element Rubber Sway Bar Bushing


Unknown said...

For the past year the clunking sound had been steadily increasing on my 2003 Element to the point that I was irritated every time I drove it. I tried switching the bushings per these instructions, and it worked! I had asked my Honda dealer to diagnose the problem, and they said it was the bushings, and "the last one cost around $400". This fix took less than a half hour, a 12mm socket, ratchet, and a few squirts of penetrating lubricant. And it can be easily done by sliding underneath the rear of the car (no need to lift the vehicle). Thanks very much, Brian for these instructions!

Doug Smith said...

It worked for me! After reading the suggested fix, I went out and gave it a try. 20 minutes later, the clunk was gone! Should have taken only 10 minutes but I had trouble getting the bolts started. Thanks, I've been annoyed by that clunking sound for the last 4 months.

Fearless said...

Thanks for this. I am ordering the part online. Can you help me find a link to the part for the front bushings too?

Brian Drye said...

Thanks. Sorry, I don't have any information regarding the front bushings.

Bobster said...

I have a 2004 element. I changed the stabilizer bushings. Still clunking. I changed the rear struts (complete strut). Still clunking. Any other suggestions?

Brian Drye said...

Bobster, sorry to hear it is still clunking. You might be able to narrow it down by having someone rock the backend sideways while you crawl underneath to listen. For the bushing related clunking, I was able to reproduce the noise in my driveway by standing on the tailgate and shifting my weight back and forth. Good luck and be careful if you do decide to crawl under the car.