Vehicle vibrations aren't something you ever want to experience, but there's certainly a spectrum of shakes and shimmies you might feel in a car. Some problems produce light vibrations that you'd barely notice if you weren't familiar with your vehicle, while others are wildly violent and impossible to miss. The latter situation can be downright terrifying when it strikes at high speeds.
If your car's exhibiting some strong vibes, and not in a good way, it's crucial to get it into a shop as soon as possible for a diagnosis. While there are many potential causes for a vehicle to shake, rattle, and roll, this article will discuss three of the most common ones.
1. Severe Tire Imbalance
Under normal conditions, your tires and wheels should remain perfectly balanced. However, roads are rarely ideal, and numerous issues can result in wheel or tire balance problems. Typically, these crop up due to uneven wear on the tires, resulting from an alignment problem or a deeper suspension issue. Dents or other wheel damage can also cause balance issues.
Tire balance problems can cause severe, violent vibrations in your vehicle. You can usually narrow the problem down by paying attention to where you feel the vibration. Shaking in the steering wheel usually means a front tire is to blame, while shaking in the chassis may indicate a balance problem with a rear tire.
2. Driveline Issues
Driveline issues are typically only possible if you drive an AWD, 4WD, or RWD vehicle. These drivetrain configurations require power to transfer from the engine at the front of the car to the wheels at the car's rear. This power transmits over a driveshaft, which needs to rotate at a relatively high speed while also accomodating the up and down motion of the car's suspension.
Driveline issues can create incredibly harsh vibrations and may even produce loud and noticeable grinding noises. These vibrations are often at a higher frequency than the ones you'd notice with an imbalanced wheel since your driveshaft is rotating so quickly. If the vibrations seem to be coming from underneath the car, it may be time to suspect a driveline issue.
3. Bad Wheel Bearings
Wheel bearings can wear out for many reasons, ranging from physical damage to normal wear and tear. A faulty wheel bearing, especially in one of the front wheels, can produce very noticeable and potentially harsh vibrations. You'll usually feel these vibrations through your steering wheel, and you may also hear a whirring noise that worsens when you turn in one direction or the other.
Wheel bearing symptoms may start relatively subtly, but this isn't a problem that you should ignore for long. A failed wheel bearing can cause numerous drivability issues, and catastrophic failure can make your car impossible to control. If you notice the telltale whirring of a lousy bearing combined with excessive vibrations, it's time to get your car to a car repair shop.Share
25 March 2022
When is the last time you had your brakes checked? Are you waiting until you hear the brake pads grinding into the rotors before you do anything to replace them? Does your car pull to one side when you press on the brakes? Do you feel a shimmying in your steering wheel and brake pedal as you press the pedal to stop? If you have any of these issues, it is time for you to learn how to care for the brakes on your car effectively. Taking preventative measures and getting repair work done before serious problems arise will save you money over the years.