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Unread 06-20-2013, 01:20 PM   #1
gemiller
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Any mechanics here? Difficult diagnosis car vibration up front.

I have a 2008 dodge avenger with 125k miles.

It has a vibration between 50-70mph that is exponentially worse when going downhall and/or braking. It's had it for 3 years(had the car for 4) but it's now to a pretty dangerous level. On occassion it just flat out doesn't happen.

Feels to be front left, but its fairly aggressive and the cv axles meet under the drivers area so it could be left or right.

Already replaced:
Brake rotors, calipers, and master cylinder
Tires have been replaced
Alignment done.
1 side balljoint replaced 2 inspections ago.
Motor mounts/transmission mounts replaced by me because the motor appeared to rock pretty hard but this didn't fix anything other than all my starting motor rock is gone.

Nothing recommended or replaced last inspection

I've had it on my lift with the wheels off.
Brakes appear fine and were fully replaced and the issue remained.
Don't feel any play in tie rod ends or ball joints (feel is the keyword here as it's only me lifting, pushing and pulling with the help of my father) with or without the wheels/tires on.
CV axles feel the same left to right, they do appear to oscillate slightly when spinning, but both sides are the same, so I don't know how that would be the issue.

I tried to yank the wheel bearings last weekend but it's stuck (i'll regroup and try again) but it feels tight and smooth when hand spun and pulled on in all directions on both sides.

I'm at a completely loss, any ideas people? I also thought maybe struts but is feels almost dedicated as a rotating vibration.

I'm at a loss for this considering the inspection mechanic couldn't find anything last year when I specifically requested he see if he could find it. Any diagnosis tricks, or ideas?

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Unread 06-20-2013, 01:23 PM   #2
ajmorell
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Struts don't seem that likely to me. Outer TRE's may be good, but what about the inners?
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Unread 06-20-2013, 02:00 PM   #3
gemiller
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ajmorell View Post
Struts don't seem that likely to me. Outer TRE's may be good, but what about the inners?
I can't feel any play at all on the tie rods, and when i have someone hold the steering wheel I can't seem to create any play on either wheel by holding the 3, 9 position and push/pulling, or the 12, 6 position. I also dont have any up/down movement when lift/pushing down on the wheel that I can feel.

It's almost like whatever is broke needs a ton of force to break free that I can't reproduce.
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Unread 06-20-2013, 02:18 PM   #4
schvilktus
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Wheel bearings. I've had lots of noisy failed bearings that you'd never be able to tell by fartin' around with it in your hands. The weight of the car is necessary to make them act up sometimes. The fact that it's getting worse the more you drive stands to reason as well.
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Unread 06-20-2013, 03:18 PM   #5
ajmorell
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I dunno, we have a couple year old avenger here at work that does something similar and it feels like inner TREs to me. I had an older Saturn that was the same way, I rebuilt the entire front end less the inner TREs and it still drove and handled like **** until I replaced them.
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Unread 06-20-2013, 03:50 PM   #6
gemiller
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ajmorell
I dunno, we have a couple year old avenger here at work that does something similar and it feels like inner TREs to me. I had an older Saturn that was the same way, I rebuilt the entire front end less the inner TREs and it still drove and handled like **** until I replaced them.
Any better way to diagnose the inner tre , because I thought tie rods at first but couldn't replicate any looseness?
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Unread 06-20-2013, 04:19 PM   #7
ajmorell
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Not that I know of, on my Saturn they didn't really 'feel' bad but they clearly were. Once they were removed it was a little more obvious but I couldn't really feel and play anywhere prior to removing them.
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Unread 06-20-2013, 05:11 PM   #8
gemiller
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Well they are only 20 bucks each, so i'm picking two up tonight and will try to replace tonight or tomorrow morning. I'll post up the results as soon as completed.
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Unread 06-21-2013, 06:53 PM   #9
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rotate the tires from front to back drive it again . Take the tires out of the picture. Raise the front end up and grab the tire top and bottom, if you feel clicking, bearing; side to side clicking is tie rods, cv joint or if it has a rack .Now have someone watch the strut mounts and side to side again, if the rubber mounts are worn you will see that too.
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Unread 06-21-2013, 09:45 PM   #10
gemiller
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Update: Replaced inner and outer tie rod joints. Obviously my alignment is f'd up now, but it seems to have helped but its not gone. There was definate looseness in the ends so I just replaced all of them thinking that had to be it, and again wrong. What's interesting is that when I put it down i thought it was fixed because it drove silky smooth for about 10 miles and then bam, it was back... I'm about ready to drive this damn thing into a quarry.

And also ejeeper, I already tried rotating multiple times. There's no clicking or movement in any direction that I can reproduce by hand.
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Unread 08-22-2013, 08:19 PM   #11
gemiller
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Upping this back up, I've also now done the struts all 4 corners and new sway bar connects and it's still there. Only thing left that is even related that I can think of is wheel bearings, halfshafts, and steering rack.

/hatethisvehicle.
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Unread 08-22-2013, 10:16 PM   #12
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Not on an avenger but I've had multiple vehicles having similar symptoms like yours and it was the CV's and I suspect wear in the inner CV's. A couple of them seemed to vibrate more on light accel, but the others seemed to vibrate more on decel, letting off accel or mild braking. I would think if it was wheel bearings it would do it all the time regardless of accel/decel and probably have some growling noise and changes with turning or swerving left/right. I'd really doubt its in the steering rack either.
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Unread 08-23-2013, 07:36 AM   #13
gemiller
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Well, to remove the halfshafts on this vehicle you have to pull the bearing/hub assembly, so if I'm going through the hassle of getting them unstuck (I tried popping one off before and they are really in there), i'll end up replacing both at the tune of $250 in parts... Once those are done there will be nothing left to redo up front except the steering rack...
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Unread 08-25-2013, 02:20 PM   #14
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How about the bushings in the front control arms? Or maybe one of your wheels is bent. I had a set of wheels that although you could balance them, they would wobble when going 50-70. As soon as I replaced them, wobble went away.
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Unread 08-25-2013, 10:53 PM   #15
holliewood61
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^^^x2 the lower control arm bushings is what I was thinking
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