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Unread 04-21-2008, 07:29 AM   #1
majkowskid
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violent vibration and knocking sound.

for the past couple of weeks, i've noticed a vibration in the steering wheel right at 43mph. friday i was towing a small boat, and man, it was really bad when i was towing it. at other speeds, there is no vibration whatsoever.

i figured it was the tires out of balance, as i've had this issue before on other vehicles, so i brought it to get balanced. i actually had it done twice, because i didn't trust the first place.

there is no difference. the other thing i notice is that when i'm making a left hand turn, and i hit ANY bump, even a rock in the road, i hear and feel a knock coming from the left side of the front end. i feel the knock in the floorboard of the jeep.

my jeep is a 2005, with only 11k miles on it. i've looked underneath, and i don't see anything loose, but i'm no mechanic. it does have a 2.5 inch lift on it, and i inspected the shocks, etc. no dice.


any idea what could be causing the vibration and the knocks?

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Unread 04-21-2008, 07:46 AM   #2
BWR
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driveline.......... either unbalanced or you've got some u-joints going bad. Only other item(s) I've run into with the same situation (on a truck, not a jeep) is the trackbar bushings being shot (ovaled) and would produce a very violent shake only at some speeds & very intermittantly.
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Unread 04-21-2008, 02:35 PM   #3
majkowskid
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well, i just got back from the stealership. it's going in wednesday morning for inspection. it's still under warranty, so they're going to look at it. i can't imagine u joints going bad in 3 yrs and only 11k miles. this thing is like brand new!

i took a tech for a ride in it, and at first it didn't do it. we were on an access road to the highway... then, BAM. it started vibrating, and hard. usually, i hit the brakes to slow down a couple mph, and it's gone. but he told me to maintain my speed, and oh my God. it got so bad i almost lost it on the road. i slammed on the brakes, and the vibrating didn't stop this time until i came to a complete stop. the tech was freaking out. he grabbed onto the oh Spit handle and cursed

i was thinking it was a front end issue, but the drive line makes more sense. i would think the clunking sound would happen at take off though, not when i turn... that's like the only time the noise happens... when i turn to the left.
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Unread 04-23-2008, 01:11 PM   #4
majkowskid
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update

jeep went to the dealership this morning. tech called a while ago and said a total of 11 tech have ridden in my jeep, and were all scared evidently, it was vibrating VIOLENTLY. they are all stumped however. they are doing an alignment right now, but they're pretty sure that's not it. they can't find anything out of spec, no worn parts. only thing is the steering dampener had a recall on it, so they ordered one, and it will be installed tomorrow morning.

he said the next step is to replace the entire front axle if the new dampener doesn't fix it. one tech said he had a very similar deal a couple years ago, and they ended up swapping the front axle and it went away. so i may get a new axle out of it. maybe i can talk them into a dana 44

they all seemed pretty doubtful that the steering stabilizer would cause this type of vibration. i know they help, but it can't solve this sort of thing!


i'll keep everyone updated.
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Unread 04-23-2008, 01:24 PM   #5
Crashnburn80
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Sounds like death wobble. This is usually cause by loose items in your front end, worn bushings, poor alignment, tires being out of balance or unevenly worn. This happens all the time, just do a search for death wobble.

No need to replace the front axle, chances are in that case something was just loose and the techs missed it, when they replaced the axle they tightened it as part of the install.

As for your knocking, its likely your Tcase linkage. The dealer should know about this, there is a TSB on it. No harm is done by it, just annoying. Here is a writeup:

http://www.4x4xplor.com/T-CaseTSB.html

I wouldn't bother repairing that unless they do it for free (prob not covered under warrenty) I'd opt for the $35 AA bracket that removes the linkage from the body making your Tcase shift much smoother and not affected by changes between your body and driveline.
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Unread 04-23-2008, 02:25 PM   #6
pardoni
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i have an 03 sport that did the same thing, but didn't start happening until after I put the 2" lift in. Happened to my daughter while on the Tacoma Narrows Bridge. Once it was re-alligned and I installed a beefier stabilizer shock (Rancho), the problem has never come back. All hail the death wobble!
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Unread 04-23-2008, 02:37 PM   #7
Crashnburn80
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pardoni View Post
Happened to my daughter while on the Tacoma Narrows Bridge.
Somehow that seems fitting. BTW, Welcome to the forum pardoni.
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Unread 04-23-2008, 03:00 PM   #8
majkowskid
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Crashburn, you are the man. i appreciate the info on the knocking sound. i just called the tech guys at the shop and they were like "wow, never heard of that... we'll check into it!"
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Unread 04-23-2008, 03:19 PM   #9
1CleanTJ
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wow id be questioning how well these techs know there stuff if they dont even know the most common causes of violent shaking on a jeep..... Seems to me like they dont know much and just want to toss parts at it hoping it gets fixed since its under warranty
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Unread 04-24-2008, 09:10 AM   #10
majkowskid
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well, he said they checked the trac bar, and all front end components. he said everything was torqued to spec, and there weren't any worn parts. he even showed me a list of all the front end bolts, and what they are supposed to be torqued to, and said they checked every one. they even swapped 3 different sets of wheels and tires to see if it was my wheels and tires i have on it. everything from stock wheels and tires, to an employee's jeep's 33" tires and steelies. no dice. same thing happened. these guys seem pretty ok after talking to them. i was thinking what you were thinking until i went in after work to check on it. they basically talked about everything that i read on the forum here that could lead to it.

he did call this morning and said they are going to check the integrity of the frame... something about measuring crossways from zxle to axle to make sure the frame is perfectly straight and the axles are aligned.

more updates to come.
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Unread 04-24-2008, 09:42 AM   #11
thejafe
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Misaligned axles wouldn't cause death wobble. Tons of guys on this forum run their rigs without adjustable track bars and while it's not ideal, their Jeeps don't get the DW.

If, and I repeat IF they checked each and every bolt and everything is torqued to spec. -- I would check the mounting hole for the front track bar bolt on the passenger side. Look to see if it's been widened somehow, allowing for the track bar to have some play when a bump is hit.

If they swapped three sets of wheels and tires on, the alignment is good and they were still getting DW I can virtually guarantee that one of your steering components is loose.

I find it hilarious that as soon as someone comes to a dealership with DW the first thing they do is swap in a new steering stabilizer -- as though that's what's keeping the entire front end from rattling itself apart.
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Unread 04-24-2008, 10:16 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by majkowskid View Post
Crashburn, you are the man. i appreciate the info on the knocking sound. i just called the tech guys at the shop and they were like "wow, never heard of that... we'll check into it!"
You need to take your Jeep to better mechanics.
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Unread 04-24-2008, 11:58 AM   #13
majkowskid
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the only reason they are replacing the steering stabilizer right now is because he said there was a bulletin out about it.

as far as bringing it to better mechanics, i'd love to do that, but there is only 1 jeep dealership within 100 miles of here, and i'm at it the jeep is under warranty, so it'll stay there until it's fixed.
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Unread 04-24-2008, 12:09 PM   #14
thejafe
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Quote:
Originally Posted by majkowskid View Post
the only reason they are replacing the steering stabilizer right now is because he said there was a bulletin out about it.
Right, but in one of your earlier posts you wrote:

Quote:
Originally Posted by majkowskid View Post
he said the next step is to replace the entire front axle if the new dampener doesn't fix it.
Which points to the fact that they even considered the idea that a steering stabilizer would fix your problem.
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Unread 04-24-2008, 01:18 PM   #15
pardoni
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pardoni View Post
i have an 03 sport that did the same thing, but didn't start happening until after I put the 2" lift in. Happened to my daughter while on the Tacoma Narrows Bridge. Once it was re-alligned and I installed a beefier stabilizer shock (Rancho), the problem has never come back. All hail the death wobble!
I failed to mention that I toe'd it in just a bit
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