Grinding noise when front wheels are turned on 2003 Ford Explorer

Own a 2003 Ford Explorer with a full time 4 wheel drive system, but has a lock mode and a two speed transfer case. While driving, when the front wheels are turned there is a loud grinding noise. It is very noticeable when you first take off from a stop and you turn the steering wheel. Two mechanics have checked it out and both say there is nothing wrong, but have not given the reason for the noise. I have had several 4x4 vehicles and have never experienced this in both 2 and 4 wheel drive settings. Does this have something to do with the differential action in the transfer case when the wheels are turned, or is there a problem in the drive train? When the wheels are staight ahead, there is no noise. The tires are the stock size, so I know they are not rubbing on something.

by in Garden Grove, CA on May 08, 2010
1 answer 3 comments
ANSWER by , May 28, 2010
I wanted to find out if you found out what this was caused from. I am having the same problem with my 2002 explorer. (keon.jones@yahoo.com)
COMMENT by , June 06, 2010
The fluid in the differential case needs to be replaced. same thing happened to my 2003 Explorer. Once fluid was replaced the sound and knocking was gone - ran like new.
COMMENT by , April 10, 2011
I am having the same problem with my 03.. will this cause it to also eat gas?
COMMENT by , July 24, 2014
my 2003 4xx4 ranger has loud grinding noise when wheels are turned to left only