Since the rainy season ended I have had a creaking noise coming from the front of the car when making low speed manoeuvres.
Any suggestions of the likely culprit and should I be trying to find an open garage now or can it wait for the next service?
Might be the CV joints. These tend to make alarming noises when doing slow manoeuvres on full lock when they're wearing out. They are hidden inside large rubber gaiters which should be intact to retain the grease.
This happened to me a couple of months ago and it was the CV joint on passenger side. £150 fix with pattern part from Rockauto.com. See the separate thread on this if it is what the garage diagnose - you have to buy and switch the whole assembly.
If it's the CV joint(s), a spray of lubricant will do absolutely nothing, except maybe make it worse. First you have to slide the Gaiter off; probably held in with metal crimpable-band all the way round, maybe with a cable-tie. Then you'll find the inside has a lot of very thick, viscous, heavy-grade grease, not some lightweight spray stuff. If you wanted, you could wash out all that grease & replace with new, but that won't stop the noise, just reduce very very slightly the rate at which it gets worse. Not worth the effort tbh.
It's not likely to be a dangerous thing; hopefully there's no creaking as you go in a straight line/gentle curves? CVs are usually quiet in a straight line. If yours is creaking as you go straight, then it's very badly worn, and might collapse & leave you standed suddeny. If it only creaks when on maximum lock, that's typical of slight-but-not-yet-clapped-out wear.
So, do you creak only on maximum lock? Or always? You need to try to ascertain just what bit is suffering, first. Could just be that anti-roll bars/other rubbery-bits which are simpler & cheaper to fix - we don't yet know the precise driving conditions that cause the creak. Are you driving over a kerb edge at this point? Something bumpy like a pothole/speed-ramp? If that what causes the creak, unlikely to be CV, more likely suspension bushes/damper/track-rod ends etc. Are you applying power from the engine when it creaks? CV creaks are loudest when applying more torque, especially at extreme angle of turn.
Tends to be either side of straight ahead rather than full lock. Low speed manoeuvring, straightening up out of a roundabout, that sort of thing. Bumps & potholes don't seem to cause the noise and there is nothing noticeable in a straight line or at higher speeds.
Hmm, I've not known worn CVs be silent at full lock, but rattly/creaky at just off centre. Sounds like time to jack it up and squirt suitable lube as h8ten suggested, all over the place, and see if that works. It just might be the flat thrust bearing at very top of a McPherson strut, if that gets water in they can rust and break up, so you could try squirting grease right up the inside of the plastic shroud which hides and protects this.
I'd try 1 at a time, see if the noise goes, then the other, then a bush somewhere, and repeat. Again, what you ideally want is to find a repeatable way to provoke the noise. Does it happen when a wheel rides a bump? Does it happen if car stationary but steering wheel is turning? Can you make it creak on straight road by weaving? Does it stop if you brake gently while weaving? Does it creak if you weave while freewheeling (almost certainly not CVs if so)?