My sister's 2006 Infiniti G35X has what I think is a wheel bearing noise. It comes in around 50mph, and it is a grinding sound that tracks with road speed whether in gear or in neutral and continues up to higher speeds and down to 30mph.
All wheels passed the usual wheel bearing rocking test (grip at 12 and 6 and rock in/out), and spinning them by hand is smooth and noiseless. We jacked the car up with all 4 wheels off the ground and let the engine spin up the wheels to higher speeds, at which point I determined that it was right front.
Before I say it IS a wheel bearing, is there anything else it could be?
I'm not so sure, usually spinning the wheels with the engine off by hand, one should be slower with more friction if a bearing is gone. They tend to make a "hum" kind of sound rather than a grinding. Could it be drive shaft related?
When I road-tested it before jacking it up, I thought it might possibly be a bearing in the center differential. Narrowing it to the right front, clearly that corner, means it must be something very near the hub/bearing if not in the hub/bearing.
I googled and found that other people with the same car had the same noise and it turned out to indeed be the wheel bearing, though one had a brake caliper missing a mounting bolt. The stories all seem to go the same way too, with the owner being told it's their tires so they buy the expensive tires that go on that car and the noise doesn't go away, then it ends up being the bearing.
Wheel bearings can make all kinds of different sounds...hum, squeak, grind, squeal, barking, foghorn, leghorn, horndog, corndog, corncob, cobbler, pie, empanada...oh wait I got carried away there.
When the bearing went on the HHR, the usual tests weren't any help in determining the problem. It wasn't until I had replaced both that I could determine which one was bad by hand turning. The extra spinning weight of the wheel just masked any faster spin down when done by hand, and the resistance that makes noise on the highway was only sensible by feel at hand spun speeds.
I used to have a 2005 G35x that had a similar issue. If I was driving in a straight line and rolled down the window I could hear a noise coming from the wheel like it was hitting something. The noise would speed up or slow down depending on my speed. If I turned the wheel one way or another the noise would go away. Does this sound familiar?
I changed out the front brakes (pads and rotors) and the noise still remained. Unfortunately I sold the car before I was able to 100% determine what the problem was, but my research indicated that it was probably the wheel bearing. From the looks of it, it's not a FYI type of job.
Nice find! I was looking for a thread like that but I didn't find one.
The job is within my capabilities.
It's great that the thread has the OEM part numbers. Now I wish I had procrastinated a little more...I just ordered the Timken bearing with rush shipping a few hours ago and it shipped already. I would have loved to use the OEM part number, though that thread says that the Timken is a repackaged OEM one anyway. I may still grab that OEM hub so I can have it pressed together BEFORE we get started on the job.