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Clunking Noise From Rear, Accident Damage?

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Clunking Noise From Rear, Accident Damage?

Old 01-29-2019, 07:33 PM
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Default Clunking Noise From Rear, Accident Damage?

Hey guys,

So this guy only wants $8,500 for this s2k with 162k miles on it.

Clean title, however I did notice the trunk was slightly elevated on the left side, causing a slight misalignment. Also it seems the right side skirt doesn't quite line up with the front fender, the panels are not completely flush. It is very minor. The front and rear bumpers have also been replaced. This leads me to believe it may have been in an accident. What are your guys's thoughts?

Also when test driving, I noticed that the rear of the car will make a clunking noise when coming to a stop (with the clutch all the way in and not touching the shifter.) This was with the clutch fully depressed. I also noticed the clunking noise when depressing and pressing the clutch. It would clunk when near the floor while moving the petal.

Another clunk would occur when dropping to first at a low speed, before letting out the clutch. This seemed to be a different noise coming from the gear box perhaps.

So, with that information, what do you guys think could be the issue? I'm thinking about having an alignment shop, and mechanic check out the car, but also wanted your guys's opinions before I do so.


Thank you!
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Old 01-29-2019, 08:04 PM
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To add more info, I did notice the car had a slight tenancy to turn left, which worries me about the alignment.
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Old 01-30-2019, 08:44 AM
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The writing is on the wall...
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Old 01-30-2019, 09:09 AM
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For a clean title s2000 at $8500, stop being so picky.

If you want a pristine one look at one's over $20k.
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Old 01-30-2019, 12:37 PM
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Although $8500 can be attractive just be aware that once an S has it's frame/alignment tweaked in some way from an incident, it is pretty much impossible to bring it back to perfect. This car is notoriously fickle on handling and alignment for the smallest issues: tires, pressure, etc. Frame alignment issues will be noticeable. If you are not that picky, go for it.

I would take it to an alignment shop just to see if they can perform a standard OEM alignment or not. That will tell you.

Good luck.
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Old 01-30-2019, 06:05 PM
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It's hard too tell whether the clunks you're feeling are an issue. It depends how severe they are. Putting the shifter into first does give a noticeable clunk on our cars, much more so than any other manual I have owned. Your other clunks could be normal as well. The S2000 is pretty stiff compared to many cars so you "feel" more stuff. Personally, I don't notice these things when I'm driving but if I'm trying to pay attention to anything that isn't perfectly quiet, they're noticeable.
Slight misalignment of body panels does not imply frame damage. The fenders and quarter panels are held on with clips that are adjustable. If the bumpers were replaced it's possible that the body shop didn't tighten the clips adequately, causing them to shift. Your best bet is to look for obvious repaint and frame straightening. If you're not good at picking out significant repair, take it to a repair shop and have them look it over.
For that price, if it hasn't seen any major frame damage it doesn't seem like a bad deal. Obviously, that's assuming the engine is in good shape.
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Old 01-31-2019, 07:00 AM
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First, that price is what an S2000 with multiple accidents and that mileage would go for. Second, don't buy it.

Why shouldn't you buy it?

First, the motor... this particular engine, based on the photos, has possibly had significant work. You don't remove the AC unless you've done something stupid, like pulled the motor and smashed all of the lines. Check for signs of forced induction because of this situation. I remember seeing a YouTube series with a black S2000 in the PNW area that was forced induction with that particular valve cover; probably a coincidence, but check for odd notches behind the bumper or under the airbox. Check the rear of the head to see if there's a vin tag, and further, compare the vin on the firewall of this car with the title, and the vin on the dashboard. Look that VIN up in the registry on that site, and go to town searching the previous owner's account if you find it. Second, the interior is nice for a car with 165,000. It's possibly been replaced, which in and of itself isn't a problem, but it's still weird. Third, the bumper conversion is unnecessary meddling unless there was an accident.

Now, the "clunk" you're hearing could be normal, or it could be a sign that there's an issue with the diff, the diff mounts, the transmission, the driveshaft, etc. We'd need to hear it. Heck, it could even be an unsecured spare. The trunk being higher is a very common thing on these cars... if you put something too large in the trunk and shut it, it'll get a bit out of whack. My trunk does it, and it's never been in an accident and has the VIN tag intact. You can screw the rubber bumpers in and out to fix it.

I would pass hard. The price is actually fine, but that motor missing the AC and the signs of stupid mods and meddling scare the hell out of me.
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Old 01-31-2019, 02:08 PM
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Just going by what the seller wrote, the front and rear had a conversion to AP2 and is probably why it looks off... whoever put it together lacks attention to detail. You should be able to readjust the front bumper pretty easy and the rear I can't tell in the pics but that's probably it too.

The rear clunk as others said: check the OEM diff mounts for being super old/blown, check to make sure all four diff bolts have nuts holding it in place (totally happened to me), loose muffler. Other then recording it, hard to tell.

Take it to a mechanic, compression/leak down test, have seller produce all receipts he claims to have. Interior looks well taken care of, overall looks nice.

Also the clunk going into 1st from low speed...don't do that. Just my opinion but it's too much for the tranny, and you're clunking it because of it. I don't think I've ever dropped into 1st from more then 3-4 MPH at 2nd.

Lastly, the cylinder cover looks like he did the AP2 conversion on it from AP1.

my 2 cents.. good luck!
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