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Discussion Starter #101
Holiday storytime, tis the season to gather around the fireplace with some hot chocolate and listen to some car woes other have and learn from them.
tl;dr at end for those impatient for shenanigans.

CH1 All season tires suck:
Its been a while since I drove around deep snow with the cx-3 and not having the old ko2s. I learned the hardway what all season vs deep snow rated means haha. Ended up beaching my self on a snow drift attempting to pull into unplowed driveway that also had street plow buildup at about 18" +- high going in a yard from the street, which then continued to like 11" high snow on untouched driveway. Ended up digging my self out with a shovel but man did those wheels spin. Not even because of little to no traction but the car was physically sitting in the air higher than ground level even with the lift on packed snow and was basically like a car on jackstands. Yea I know, 'get winter tires' and 'bruh all seasons arent meant for actual snow reeee' etc but you get the idea, its an awd car and just a driveway and was not like I was going offroading up steep hills in ice.


CH2: Transmission spooky time.
After digging the car out and driving between about 60+miles one way back and forth between family houses for a couple of days I found my self at a redlight on city roads. I heard a low but somewhat violent rattling sound coming from the transmission. The reason why I presumed it to be the transmission was because I only heard it when at a stop and the transmission was in drive. Once you got moving the noise went away. In neutral it also stopped and in Reverse could not be heard either, not in park.

At this point I didnt know what to think but was hoping it was ice since nothing was melting from the snow storm previously had and with the flash light I could see behind the engine ice build up on the underbody panels.
Side note: The engine bay panels underneath have an actual scoop which if you drive into snow will basically shove snow above the panels and under the engine. I have absolutely no idea why this was a thing but using it for cooling purposes is terrible and there are many other ways that dont involve picking up road gunk/snow and shoving it under the engine.

CH3: Ice and cold temps suck
A couple days went by and still nothing. Snow started thawing and ice was melting and still no change to the noise meaning it was definitly not ice and now a potential mechanical issue to deal with. My other thought for worry was the driving with snow in wheel wells during the storm caused damage somewhere. If you dont know what I am referring to, if you drive with snow packed in your wheel, it throws your tire balance off balance and your wheels basically violently shake at highway speeds until snow melts or falls off but this could take a LONG time depending on temps and how packed/frozen the snow is. Granted after beaching my car in that snow pile, it was partially packed on 3 tires and took about 35min of highway driving to return to normal but by then bolts couldnt come undone due to the vibrations or something.

Ch4: Revelations
I brought the car to the new house since it has a garage bay to fit a car in the basement and let the car sit there a day to 'melt' anything potentially icy if it still exists and then jacked it up and went underneath. I knew it might have turned out to be something stupid but never did I realize how basically stupid this whole thing was. Presuming I did not destroy a transmission mount or something, I began to undo the heat shield under the car, shoved it into drive with the brake on and no noise. The entire idiotic thing was the flimsy heatshield dented and vibrating on stuff. But it was so inconsistent of the usual heatshield rattle noise that it actually felt like a real drivetrain problem.

Ch5: Epilogue
Anyways that aside the 2 things here I wanted to relay were while I love my quiet cooper touring tires that were also considerably cheap and reliable- holy crap I miss my deep snow rated ko2s which drove through anything but will probably get the falkens in the future since less noisy etc, and the 2nd thing was we have a horribly weak heatshield under the car. I took a picture after attempting to bend the panel back and reinstalled it for reference. Really did not expect snow to cause this, like rocks and curbs sure, but actual snow was a surprise. Hope this helps anyone who has a similar concern even though its in an unrelated topic post lol. Thanks for tuning in.

tl;dr
Heatshield under car easily dents even by snow and was vibrating on something underneath only while car was in drive and stopped causing ridonkulous concern for transmission but was really just flimsy dented metal :/
 

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Discussion Starter #102
Also if someone could check and confirm for me,
in the picture above by the cat there are 2 bolts. The leftmost one of the 2 bolts in and the other one on the right sticks out and was missing a nut. I cant imagine why there wouldnt be a nut there but I didnt see any indentations or evidence of a nut ever being attached there at any point which seems highly irregular. Can someone see if they have a nut attached to that one on their cx3?

edit: added picture with circled area for reference
 

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Can someone see if they have a nut attached to that one on their cx3?

edit: added picture with circled area for reference
I'll check later today and get back to you. It will likely be tomorrow morning, if someone else doesn't respond by then.
 

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"Not even because of little to no traction but the car was physically sitting in the air higher than ground level even with the lift on packed snow and was basically like a car on jackstands. " I am telling ya, the lift takes away the downtravel. Good story though! I am glad everything went well, and that the car is safe and sound.

The heatshield is shitty - I agree. On one of my very first off-road drives, apparently I hit the headshield numerous times, but it wasn't until coming back while driving on the highway that I noticed the vibration around the transmission aera. I freaked out a first, but then I thought it might have been a lose nut in the armrest (I installed the UK version armrest). Up to today I continue to hear the vibrations. I do get dirt and small rocks on top of the heatshield. I am going to check to see if maybe the heatshield is hitting on something like you said. I learned to live with it, but I don't like it.

There is no nut in the rear part. All good there! Happy Holidays!

23648
 

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Sorry I didn't get back on this, but glad someone else checked for you. Between the rain and snow for the last couple of days I have not wanted to crawl under to have a look.

Those heat shields can be a pain. On my first Mazda ('81 GLC) the service tech cut off a large piece of the shield because it vibrated so loudly it sounded like the car was coming apart.
 

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Discussion Starter #106
Thanks for checking. Still seems really random they have that setup prepped for a nut attachment and nothing was there. Gotta cut costs somwhere I guess lol. I just had bad luck with the way it dented and was vibrating only when transmission was engaged and wasent like usual heat shield rattle sounds from other cars. Live and learn haha
 
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