Rumbling, rattle on rough road

Hi, I have a 2006 Micra with 70k on the clock. Nothing replaced apart from tyres and an O2 sensor.

On anything other than a smooth road, there is a rumbling and a non-metallic rattle from the offside front (drivers side). I've had the car up on wheel ramps and poked around and can't see anything loose. My first guess would be shocks, but it passes the bounce test with no issues. It also recently passed an MOT with no advisories despite having this issue.

Any ideas what to look for and what/how to test?

thanks in advance

If I move the steering wheel side to side, I have a knocking noise. Is this normal when the car is stationary and engine turned off?

Sorry about the vertical video :)

I have some more progress, but not an answer yet:

I checked the UJ on the steering, it wasn't that.

I've narrowed it down to the drivers side front wheel. If I jack the car up and tap the wheel with a rubber mallet, there is a metallic clonk. The wheel will also move side to side a little whilst also making a metallic noise. It maybe moves an inch side to side. By way of a comparison, the passenger side maybe moves 1 or 2 millimeters side to side and there is no metallic knocking noise. So there is definitely a difference in play between the 2 wheels.

Whilst under the car, I listened to the sound as I tapped the wheel and it isn't coming from the suspension or steering or any bushes, it is coming from the wheel. I even tapped all bushes, rods, arms etc and none make the noise.

I'm left with thinking that it is one of two things: Something in the steering system, but at the wheel end. Or the wheel bearing.

Considering the bearing, I took the wheel off and nipped the nut up with my 400nm impact wrench and it didn't budge. But also, on perfectly smooth roads, there is no noise whereas a failing bearing would rumble all the time wouldn't it?

But there is play in the wheel, more play than the other wheel.

Any thoughts?


The middle bearing nut rarely comes loose but makes the wheel rock from side to side like you are showing since you have tightened this up (has to be super tight).
Have seen that happen on one occasion and the bearing was fine but wheel felt wobbly.
Not really sure what else could cause the wheel to have play in it.
A mechanic said (I've never seen one of these to become loose before in all his years of working on cars..)

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