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Unread 03-31-2012, 07:30 AM   #1
rdh4116
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Join Date: Mar 2012
Posts: 1
Serious death wobble 99 tj

Ok so I've been having this problem since I put on a 4" sport lift kit. Occasionally when I hit a bump or pothole the jeep goes into an uncontrollable death wobble have to come to complete stop to end it. I've been to 3 different reputable shops in my area they can't figure it out. I have 1 ton steering and drop bracket adj track bar. most recent shop believes that when they crank the wheel the tub is twisting out of place. I see that many lifted jeeps have this problem in common so is there anyone who has any possible reasons for this occurrence or what I should look for I would appreciate the input

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Unread 03-31-2012, 02:08 PM   #2
VietVet67
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2004 LJ Wrangler 
 
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: Enterprise, Oregon
Posts: 768
Only way to fix it is ship the Jeep to me with the signed over title

No really do a search it has been covered a lot--good luck tho!!
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Unread 05-11-2012, 02:32 PM   #3
caiha
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Join Date: May 2012
Posts: 94
Quote:
Originally Posted by rdh4116
Ok so I've been having this problem since I put on a 4" sport lift kit. Occasionally when I hit a bump or pothole the jeep goes into an uncontrollable death wobble have to come to complete stop to end it. I've been to 3 different reputable shops in my area they can't figure it out. I have 1 ton steering and drop bracket adj track bar. most recent shop believes that when they crank the wheel the tub is twisting out of place. I see that many lifted jeeps have this problem in common so is there anyone who has any possible reasons for this occurrence or what I should look for I would appreciate the input
Have installed heavy duty steering stabilizer. I saw this a lot when I worked in the shop for about 16 yrs. I would try this first. Less expensive than other options
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Unread 05-23-2012, 02:30 AM   #4
HandsOn
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Location: San Jose, CA
Posts: 251
Did you ever get this dealt with rdh?
Not sure what you mean when they said the tub twists out of place, but if by that they mean you can see the body/chassis move sideways over the tires when you turn the steering wheel, then your trackbar is either loose, the rod end is worn out, a mount is loose or broken, or the bar itself flexing. Sounds like to me anyway.

You can test the front end components yourself for free though, by having a helper turn the steering wheel back and forth just enough to make the tires move side to side (tires fully on the ground though) while you lay under there and watch what's going on. While having the engine running can make it easier for the helper, it does not have to be on to do this test. Makes for less nervousness when laying under there!
With things moving back and forth, you can see any little movement in steering linkages or flexing in things like the frame or trackbar. Any movement that does not push the next component (excess freeplay in other words) is worn out and not good in most steering components. Rod ends should have no side-to-side movement in them at all. Trackbar bushings will flex a little, but only a VERY LITTLE is acceptable. If you see the bar or it's mounts moving, something needs to be done to eliminate, or at least greatly reduce the play.
When doing this test, you can even see things like cracked frames under a steering box, or loose wheel bearings and ball joints, or even a cracked wheel.
Great tool to get used to using.

However, and I sometimes get heat for this when I mention it, but your description of it starting when you hit a bump sounds like a tire issue to me. Classic symptom, if it's repeatable at the same bump especially. You say it started after the 4" lift, but did you also change tires at the same time? New or used? What size and tread design? Any little curb, pothole, or rock-attacks that you thougt too small to mention? Some tires can be damaged internally by just the right hit. Others just die of old age. Happens all the time. That's why I was asking if you installed older or used tires.

JK's have an issue with trackbar bolts that are too small for the mounting holes, so that if/when they ever work loose, there is a lot of potential play. No matter what the actual problem starts with, any items you have that may be loose or worn can certainly contribute to making a DW more recurring and more vicious.

At the very least, try rotating the tires front to back to eliminate the fronts as an issue. If you've got one dead tire up there, it can sometimes fix the issue. And it's free!
If you've got three or four bad tires though, you're SOL. So to speak...

Good luck. Hopefully you found the issue by now. It's a hairy thing for sure.

Paul
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Unread 05-29-2012, 11:46 AM   #5
Tracy1974
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2004 TJ Wrangler 
 
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: Corpus Christi, Tx
Posts: 54
I had this prob too and racked my brain trying to fix it. I death wobbled bad enough for long enough it vibrated my condenser bad enough to wear a hole in it. I assumed the lift but rotated tires with no help then took tires off another jeep and no luck. But what happens is when the jeeps at factory set up it has a whole lot more tolerance for slight problems like slightly out of balanced tires. When lifted the tolerance drops. After doing a hundred things to the front end with no luck and many spent bucks I bought a new set of tires that I made sure to stand there and make sure they were ballanced and I never got the death wobble again. Most of the time it is bad tires!
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Unread 05-29-2012, 02:58 PM   #6
JP67
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Join Date: May 2012
Posts: 3
I JUST fixed mine... I have a stock 06 and it started doing that too.. I have replaced the trac-bar , wheel bearing ( hubs ) steering dampner put new socks and tires.. NO MORE WOBBLE..... But now the rear end is making noise.. pulled my axel's and the passenger side bearings fell out.... In process of changing them... ONLY INA JEEP ! ! right...
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Unread 06-12-2012, 12:33 PM   #7
jstone18
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2001 TJ Wrangler 
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Laguna Hills, Ca
Posts: 32
Like HandsOn said about the JK's, the hole for the track bar bolt (where it connects to the axle) may be too big for the bolt or it could have been loose and now it got ovalized from the vibration. That is what happened to my TJ. I just went to the local hardware store and picked up a few grade 8 bolts of different sizes and stuck the one in that fit the best. This took care of my issue but i still have to re-tighten the bolt from time to time. Hope this hels if you havent fixed the problem already.
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Unread 07-16-2012, 03:35 PM   #8
TJontharocks
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2006 TJ Wrangler 
 
Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: Austin, Texas
Posts: 17
If your issue isnt the trackbar, and you lifted it and added larger tires without replacing Mopar's WEAK balljoints, you need to. The Mopar balljoints are made of very weak plastic and teflon, I had the exact same issue with my 06 TJ. After the process of elimination on my rig I bought Polly Performance's Synergy balljoint's, they're awesome, and made of Steel, not to mention they are fully greasable upper and lower they should do tha trick. I'm also going to upgrade the front end with a Currie Tie rod, Drag link ect.. can't have those weak OEM componants on her with bigger tires and more stress on the front end.

These are some images PP has on there page..
stock-ball-joints-400-1-.jpg   ppm-8009-12-cut-away-400.224-1-.jpg   ppm-8009-12-lower-cutaway-400-1-.jpg  
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