When it comes to your speedometer, you should know very well that speedometers rely on a cable that transmits data from the sensor to the vehicle’s ECU.
For your speedometer to stay reliable, you need to make sure that your speedometer cable is working well enough.
Then again, there are some cases where your speedometer cable might not sound the way it should especially when it is going bad.
So, what does a bad speedometer cable sound like?
A bad speedometer cable will make squealing noises as the cable is already losing its functionality and or, at the very least, lacks lubrication. This is usually be accompanied by your speedometer needle moving in an erratic manner as, when the two signs converge, your speedometer cable is already going bad.
If your speedometer cable is going bad, the logical result is a speedometer that is also going bad as well.
This means that you might end up with a speedometer that isn’t functioning the way it should, and that can be a disaster waiting to happen especially if you always drive at high speeds on highways.
Of course, because you want to make sure you are driving safely, it is necessary for your speedometer to work and for your speedometer cable to be in working condition.
How do I know if my speedometer cable is bad?
One of the most important instruments on your dashboard or instrument cluster is the speedometer because of how it is involved with your overall safety while you are driving your car.
You always want to make sure you are driving at safe speeds especially when you value your safety and that of the safety of other people.
In that sense, it is necessary that your speedometer should be working fine at all times.
But there are some instances when your speedometer ends up failing due in large part to the speedometer cable that transmits the data from the speedometer’s sensor all the way to the car’s engine control unit or ECU.
So, when your speedometer cable isn’t working properly or is going bad, your speedometer won’t work the way it should.
That, said, how do I know if my speedometer cable is bad?
The first instance that would indicate that your speedometer cable is going bad is when your speedometer needle is often moving in an erratic manner such as when the needle is suddenly moving up and down in a way that doesn’t reflect your speed.
It is normal for the needle to move up and down while you are driving because your speed normally moves up and down.
However, when the speedometer needle no longer reflects the usual up and down movement of your speed such as when it suddenly goes from 10 to 60 and then back down to 20 in split seconds, then that could mean that your speedometer cable is going bad.
Or it could also mean that there is something wrong with your speedometer sensor.
Of course, when the speedometer needle is no longer moving at all even when you are accelerating, that could mean that the speedometer cable has already lived out its entire lifetime and has already gone bad to the point where it no longer works.
When this happens, you could end up in trouble if you get pulled over by an officer for overspeeding simply because you didn’t know how fast you were going.
But one of the best indicators of a speedometer cable going bad is the sound that it makes.
When you hear a sound coming from behind your dashboard, that could mean that your speedometer cable is already going bad or has already gone bad.
What does a bad speedometer cable sound like?
Speaking of the sound that your speedometer cable makes when it has already gone bad or is going bad, what does a bad speedometer cable actually sound like?
This is something you should be aware of so that you can keep your ears open for this sound.
So, when a speedometer cable is going bad, you will be able to hear squealing noises from behind the car’s dashboard.
This should be something that persists throughout the entire time you are driving as the sound should be quite audible.
The sound is an indication of the speedometer cable working hard or grinding due to how it is already going bad.
Of course, when you hear squealing noises, the speedometer cable isn’t always the culprit as this could also be due to some other issues with your car.
However, when the sound is accompanied by the other symptoms of a bad speedometer cable such as your speedometer needle moving in an erratic manner or your “check engine” lights turning on, that means that the reason for the speedometer problems should be due to the speedometer cable going bad.
How do you fix a noisy speedometer cable?
So, when your speedometer cable is making all those noises because it is going bad, how do you fix it?
Well, for starters, there is no fix to a speedometer cable that has already gone bad because it has already lived out its purpose.
As such, when a speedometer cable has already gone bad, the only way for you to fix the issues is to have your speedometer cable replaced.
Replacing your speedometer cable can be something that you can do if you are used to tinkering with your car’s dashboard and the things found under the hood.
However, if you are a novice when it comes to that, it is better for you to go to a mechanic instead.
The good news is that not all noisy speedometer cables indicate a bad speedometer cable.
There are some instances where the noise that your speedometer cable is making can be attributed to a lack of lubrication on the cable.
In other words, your speedometer cable should still be fine and is in working condition but only needs to be lubricated for it to work normally again.
So, what you need to do here is to lubricate your speedometer cable.
This requires that you remove it from the housing unit in your car and that you lubricate it using an automotive lubricant.
Of course, if you don’t know how to remove the speedometer cable from the dashboard, then you probably need to leave this job to a mechanic.
Your Mechanic: Symptoms of a bad or failing speedometer cable and housing