Long time ETCG fan here, however first post on the forum.
So ive got a 2000 Acura RL, which is kind of an oddball for me as im used to working on just about any and all hondas and acuras but as you may know this one has a longitudinal mounted 90 degree 3.5 V6. However, the first time this car was brought to me to look at it had a bent driverside lower control arm, bad lower balljoint, and a bad inner CV joint. So i went through and replaced the control arm, balljoint, and both axles since they both looked to be original. Test drove and everything was fine. No more noise from the CV joint and it was tracking much better down the road. Gave the car back and it went on its way to Canada and back to Ohio.
Well a week later, its back in the states and gets dropped back off for a “rumbling/grinding” noise from the front driverside. I immediately jack it up take a look and everything still looks fine. I went through and made sure nothing had come loose and everything looked normal. So since the noise resembled the noise the bad inner CV joint was making before, i went ahead and replaced the axle shaft under warranty, hoping i had just got a not so great quality replacement axle. And as soon as i take off for a test drive i still hear the same noise.
Now I start to question the wheel bearing. After pulling everything off and isolating the hub and bearing so i can spin it freely i notice it spins nice about half way then gets a bit stiff the other half of a rotation. Spinning it freely i hear what to me sounds like a bearing starting to go bad. I’ve always gone by a rule my father had taught me on wheel bearings, which is if it makes noise spinning it by hand, it will make 10x more noise on the car with load on it. So i go ahead and get a new bearing pressed in and reinstall the spindle only to find out the noise is STILL there. By now i am close to the point of just giving the keys back and honestly giving up on it.
This noise is a metal on metal grinding/rubbing that you can hear, and feel in the floorboard and steering wheel, as soon as the vehicle accelerates, starting at maybe 5-10 mph, and gets progressively faster as the car accelerates. And seems to be effected when turning slightly. It gets quieter when slightly turning to the left, and a bit louder when slightly turning to the right. A weird thing i noticed is once i get up to 25-30 mph if i let off the accelerator the noise completely goes away, until resuming accelerating.
At this point i suspect possibly the bearing on the intermediate shaft, which goes through the oil pan on these with a differential mounted on the passenger side of the pan. Other than that i am completely out of ideas on this car. Im really hoping someone here has a lot of experience with these 1st generation RL’s and their c35 engine and drivetrain.
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