: Just curious: How long (how far) did you drive your car before replacing the bad bearing? How fast does the problem get worse? My 2012 TCH has developed a slight but persistent wheel tramp noise that varies with the speed of the car and has been present for a while now. It seems to coincide with the wheel revolutions, but steering the car through a virtual slalom course doesn't change the noise appreciably, so I don't think it is a wheel bearing, as it was in your case. My tires (the infamous Bridgestones) are nearing EOL, but still have a reasonable amount of tread on them. They have gotten loud as well, but in a different way, and I don't think they are responsible for the aforementioned noise. I'd rather diagnose the problem myself, but it comes and goes and doesn't seem to be getting worse in any hurry. I don't want to cause other ancillary damage (as bad bearings on a non-driven wheel can do), but don't want to be stranded somewhere either. So, how to proceed?
My problem was a "hub bearing" on the drivers front. I had it replaced @ 162,691 miles. However, for a LONG time I just assumed it was the tires as they were worn pretty bad and I was trying to get all I could out of the tires before getting new ones. I'd say, I drove it AT LEAST 20,000 miles before I actually had it replaced and the noise got progressively worse. Especially in turns at speed.
I got new tires put on at 158,703 miles. After getting the car out of the tire shop, I immediately knew I had a bearing problem. I removed the back seat out of the car, removed the glove box and some of the dash trim and had the wife take me for a drive while I listened for the noise in long sweeping turns at speed. Doing this enabled me to nail it down to the drivers front that was making the noise.
The dealer wanted something over $600 to fix. It's a pretty big job, because the steering knuckle has to be removed from the lower control arm and strut, axle shaft has to be removed from steering knuckle and hub and then the old hub/bearing needs to be pressed out and a new one pressed in. I had a local trustworthy shop do it for $274 including parts, labor, etc...
Honestly if the sound "comes and goes", it's more than likely tire related noise. It could be a mechanical issue associated with the PSD. But, those problems are so rare and the PSD is so robust, it's unlikely. I actually pull an 1,100lb boat and a small utility trailer with ours and have yet to have a mechanical problem with the engine or trans.
My bet is on the tires. You'll know when you get new tires. That's how I found out. I would not sweat it...