Dash rattle - any clues?

PinkieT

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Swapped out entire interior in my wife's tan and black 98 GT ragtop with an all black interior, including new dash, from a low mileage Cobra. Hit a bump or pothole and something rattles or clunks in the dash. Sounds like behind the center A/C vent near the firewall. I took the new dash out, checked all wires and cables, put a brace on top of the air door so it doesn't jump up and down, but the dash still made noise. I took out the radio and CD, center bezel, passenger air bag, glove box, and instrument cluster and my wife drove while I checked it out. No luck. Tried it with vent, heat, and air, no difference. Damn if I can find the rattle! Any hints?
 

07GtS197

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Did you check the airbag module? I dont believe theyre bolted down.
 
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PinkieT

PinkieT

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The blue box on the hump behind the radio amp? Yes, bolted down with four bolts.
 

07GtS197

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Are you sure its coming from inside? Could also be motor mounts going out. But yea the airbag module is the blue box.
 
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PinkieT

PinkieT

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Took the radio bezel with the center dash grill out, tapped the inside of the ductwork, no luck. Tomorrow I'm taking out the cowl vent and seeing if there is anything in there...
 

ttocs

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maybe something stuck in the vents? it would suck as I can only think of removing the dash and turning it upside down but I would not be surprised if someones kid didn't drop a coin or something in one of the vents.
 
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PinkieT

PinkieT

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One of the A pillar metal exterior covers wasn't bolted down. Plan on taking out the vent cowl cover, tightening the A pillar cover, and see if that is it.
 

ttocs

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under the cowl is possible. Is the metal mesh that is is supposed to be under the vents to it still in place or could it have fallen down?
 
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PinkieT

PinkieT

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under the cowl is possible. Is the metal mesh that is is supposed to be under the vents to it still in place or could it have fallen down?

I scored two more cowl vent covers at a boneyard today. My next move is to get the old one out and make sure the mesh is in place, no tabs are broken, and the rubber and foam pads are all intact. I will cannibalize the two extras to make one killer version.
 
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PinkieT

PinkieT

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Found it! Took out cowl vent cover, looked for loose parts, no luck. Drove it - still rattled. Pounded on the cowl, strut tower brace, etc. Heard a rattle when I hit the passenger side strut brace tube from the firewall to the tower. Found a silver disk a few inches across on what looks like a vacuum hose that was hitting the bottom of the tube. Twisted it so it didn't hit, drive the car - rattle gone! My wife and I SWEAR it was in the dash. Anybody know what F1ZE-AA 980602A is? Hose runs from passenger side fender near the firewall to a fitting on the back of the motor. Goes to show how a rattle can seem like it is one place and it is actually another. I cringe to think how much time I spend trying to diagnose this - taking the entire dash out and putting it back in - but at least it is GONE!!!!!!! Wifey is thrilled, and so am I:D
 

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