28-34 MPH Whine/Whistle

Discussion in 'Clarity' started by vicw, Jul 25, 2018.

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  1. vicw

    vicw Active Member

    I consistently hear a kind of whine or whistling sound on the right side of the vehicle, when driving in the range of 28-34 MPH. It's not horrific, but just kind of annoying.

    I'm beginning to wonder if the reason it only seems to occur on the right side, is the fan blade design on the wheel covers, which all have the same angled blades and rotate in the opposite direction on each side of the car. Perhaps the air movement through those 'fans' cause the noise just on the right side, and the right speed range.

    I don't recall anyone posting about this kind of issue, so I'm curious if it might be unique to my Clarity.
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  3. insightman

    insightman Well-Known Member Subscriber

    Check out this thread for wind noise some have heard on the driver's side. I'm sure you're not hearing the wheel spokes.
  4. vicw

    vicw Active Member

    There were some interesting comments in the thread. I doubt it's wind noise, though, since it disappears above 34 MPH. I guess it isn't a universal problem (such as wheel design would be), so maybe I need to sit in the passenger seat for a drive or two, and see if I can home in on the source of the sound.
  5. Atkinson

    Atkinson Active Member

    Sounds like it could be a window weatherstripping issue.
    If you find the whistle at a window, and you can find the place where air leaks (doing the technicians job for him), Honda should fix it under warranty.
    I remember a test decades ago with dusting talc on part of the rubber where the leak is suspected.
    A leak will blow a path through the talc.
    No leak will leave talc in place.
  6. vicw

    vicw Active Member

    @Atkinson Thanks, I like the talc idea. If I can home in on an area, I may try it.
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  8. AaD

    AaD Member

    We have that - sounds like a harmonic whistle coming from the passenger side at only those speeds. I've been wondering if it might be the camera on the side mirror.
  9. KentuckyKen

    KentuckyKen Well-Known Member

    I have just barely heard a very, very low whine when in EV at the speeds described where wind/road noise is low. It seems to me to not be wind noise but a harmonic from the electric motor. It also is torque sensitive in that I can make it happen or go away by pressing or releasing the accelerator pedal just a little. Try that and see if it’s the same very low whine I’m noticing. I bet I wouldn’t hear it in a gasmobile but can hear it sometimes in my ultra quiet Clarity.
  10. weave

    weave Active Member

    Solution: Get a bad case of tinnitus like I have -- you won't hear it. Just attend a lot of rock concerts without ear plugs. That will do you. :-(
    Carro con enchufe likes this.
  11. kevosuki

    kevosuki New Member

    Same thing. Sounds like electric motor whine kicking in around 28mph with low throttle input.
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  13. vicw

    vicw Active Member

    Funny, I have pretty bad tinnitus, too, but I can hear the whine. It's at a lower frequency.
    I think you both are probably right about the source being the electric motor. I would say it's louder than very, very low amplitude, but that's pretty subjective. I may try to capture the sound on my phone, and try the accelerator thing tomorrow. I have noticed that it seems to get slightly louder when I'm turning a bit left, and reduces on a rightward path. Odds are, it's present on all of the Clarities, and can't be fixed, I suspect.
  14. weave

    weave Active Member

    So @vicm -- I checked your post history and don't see anything about the noise reduction plug fiasco we've been talking about over the past few days.

    See this post, item #4

    Curious if you've checked, if they are missing on your can and this is the reason for the noise you hear.
    vicw and Johnhaydev like this.
  15. vicw

    vicw Active Member

    @weave Yes, I jumped on that one, when I read it. The plugs are all there. I was actually a bit disappointed to find them.

    Since others have also commented that they hear the same thing, I'm pretty much resigned to the suggestion that the sound is whine from the motor, and there's probably no way to change it. It is a pretty minor annoyance.
  16. weave

    weave Active Member

    @vicw -- AND.... I just heard the same thing today. Pretty much right at 28 MPH as you said. But if I let off the accelerator it goes away. Only when I'm accelerating on battery. So yeah, must be something to do with the motor. I've only had my car for two weeks so not sure if it just started or I just didn't notice it before. But now I know it's there it's going to drive me nuts. (Deep breaths, stay calm weave!)
  17. vicw

    vicw Active Member

    I'm really sorry that I made you aware, and that it may drive you nuts, hopefully temporarily. I had a similar response to the Consumer Reports review, when they said that the front cushions are too short. I never noticed any problem with them until I read that, and it bugged me for weeks afterward feeling like perhaps they were right. After that phase, I finally settled in my mind that I really think the cushions are fine, and the worry faded away. I've stopped reading reviews on the Clarity since then, just to avoid that risk.

    Regarding the battery accelerator and battery correlation - I tried playing with that a couple of days ago, and I think I noticed the whine in any mode or condition, but I may need to more sampling. On one hand, I'm glad to know that it's not just my car, but sorry that I might have made others, like you, aware of something you had never noticed before. It's really minor thing, actually. Now I need to focus on why I hear so much tire noise on some asphalt surfaces. Some are silky quiet, and others just roar.
    weave likes this.

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