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-   -   Steering Wheel Vibration (http://www.jeepforum.com/forum/f96/steering-wheel-vibration-1548750/)

SilverStreaker 07-14-2013 10:19 AM

Steering Wheel Vibration
 
About a week ago when backing out of my driveway my steering wheel shook when the front tires passed through the curb "gutter" at the end of my paved driveway. I didn't think much about it until later that day when turning a corner and it did it again (only bumps was uneven pavement at best).

Since then I've read every thread I can find about steering vibrations and can't find a definite reason for mine.

While it seems to happen only at fairly low speeds (crawling to 20mph +/-) and while driving over bumps, I can't reproduce it every time.

Last Saturday I did a 5 tire rotation (which it was due) as the first thing to check in determining the problem. As I said, I can not reproduce or force it to happen when I want. So of course when I drove the jeep after the rotation it didn't happen. Problem solved? No!

Later that day it happened again, on one occasion I was driving in a curve in the road and my right tire drove over a road reflector and it did it. wtf?

Ok, so when I rotated my tires I jacked the front end up and turned the steering left and right while rotating the tires by hand. There was no binding and no resistance whether the tires were pointing straight or in a full turn. So, I think the u-joints are fine.

I also checked to make sure the front track bar was properly torqued, which it was.

At this point it more of just an annoyance then a major concern but something is different and I would prefer to not take it to the dealer if I don't need to.

Any advice, suggestions or clarification questions are appreciated.

RockyClymer 07-14-2013 10:22 AM

Bump steer? Caused by a lift when the track bar and drag link are not parallel to each other....can you check this out or post a photo? With a 2.5 BB you might need an adj track bar or bracket that brings your track bar parallel to the drag link, when they are not parallel, moving the wheel up and down (ie. a bump) will cause the wheel to move slightly side to side cause what is known as bump steer.

222Doc 07-14-2013 10:37 AM

unless you moved the relation of the track bar to drag link its not that.

Looking at your profile.

IF your lift is installed correctly, all bolts tight and done with the weight on the ground.

It is not viberating just driving, no bumps, curbs etc.

Sounds like the drag link flex. 35"s put ALOT of strain on drag link. when a tire hits something hard it wants to make it turn. The drag link flexes. I replaced my drag link and tie rod with a set of Synergy, worlds better. The stock drag link is hardly heavy enough for stock wheels let alone 35x12.5"s. You can flex it by hand. plus the tre's on these parts from the factory are very light weight parts. loose as a goose.

Remmy18 07-15-2013 07:57 AM

Can't see your profile from my phone but if you're still running the stock front air damn, the tires can rub on that at full turn and in reverse quite easily. As I mentioned, can't see your profile but mine did that before I removed all the plastic up front.

RockyClymer 07-15-2013 07:59 AM

A lift will change the geometry of the track bar and drag link relative to each other...

mello 07-15-2013 01:32 PM

A stock jk has bump steer under the right conditions. When u lift it and don't get steering geometry right it will be worse.

SilverStreaker 07-15-2013 03:34 PM

The track bar and drag link appear to be parallel to each other and upon closer examination I noticed the drag link has a slight bit of play when turning the wheels back and forth. I can't shake the ends by hand but there's at least a 1/16" +/- of play on both ends when the wheels are being turned. So, I ordered a Synergy Drag Link with Tie Rods from Quadratec. Hopefully that will fix the issue. Thanks again for all your help!

SilverStreaker 07-22-2013 10:06 AM

Well I replaced the drag link with a Synergy Drag link and the problem is still there. I took it in to the alignment shop over the weekend and and one of the guys said 'oh you just need to replace your steering stabilizer' I told him, that would probably stop the vibration but is likely masking the problem. The tech that worked on my Jeep agreed with me that it probably is not the stabilizer.
So, the alignment was basically a waste of time and money. Said I needed adjustable lower control arms and an adjustable drivers side upper ball joint before they could put the front end in a complete alignment but they didn't think any of this would cause the vibration.
So, any more ideas???
How can I test the stabilizer?
Thanks!

duneslider 07-22-2013 10:40 AM

Have you had your tires balanced lately? I had a tire throw a weight and it gave me a pretty significant shimmy/wobble. It seemed to be most noticeable on mine at 35-40mph and if I hit the right bump at that speed things got pretty crazy. It actually seemed very similar to death wobble. I had a dodge truck with a bad track bar and it could get death wobble at any speed with the right bump.

Might be an easy thing to check. You could rotate your tires front to back and see if the problem persists.

I also checked my trackbar and all the control arms and linkage thinking that might be the issue, all looked good after inspection so I decide to rotate my tires and the shimmy in front was gone. Usually, if the issue is very much related to certain speeds it is a tire/balance issue.

Take your stabilizer off and see if it makes a difference. I suspect the issue isn't your stabilizer.

SilverStreaker 07-22-2013 10:58 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by duneslider (Post 15704854)
Have you had your tires balanced lately? I had a tire throw a weight and it gave me a pretty significant shimmy/wobble. It seemed to be most noticeable on mine at 35-40mph and if I hit the right bump at that speed things got pretty crazy. It actually seemed very similar to death wobble. I had a dodge truck with a bad track bar and it could get death wobble at any speed with the right bump.

Might be an easy thing to check. You could rotate your tires front to back and see if the problem persists.

I also checked my trackbar and all the control arms and linkage thinking that might be the issue, all looked good after inspection so I decide to rotate my tires and the shimmy in front was gone. Usually, if the issue is very much related to certain speeds it is a tire/balance issue.

Take your stabilizer off and see if it makes a difference. I suspect the issue isn't your stabilizer.

Thanks for the suggestions.
The first thing I did was rotate the tires and the 5 tire rotation pattern I use moves both fronts to the back so I don't think an unbalanced tire is causing it.
When I get home I'll pull the stabilizer off and see if the issue is the same or worse.

Butterbuddha 07-22-2013 07:49 PM

I wouldn't bother with it, your initial feelings about the stab are correct. THOUGH, I got a big fol Fox stabilizer on mine and it totally keeps mine on the straight and narrow. Dunno what my particular issue is (it does rear its head with no stab) but the Fox does its job.

duneslider 07-23-2013 09:24 AM

I was at a friends last night and he said he had a really bad shimmy yesterday and it ended up being one of his tie rods. He had is wife sit in the jeep and turn the steering wheel back and forth and he watched and felt things for a while and didn't see anything and then eventually out of the corner of his eye thought he saw a slight movement. So he focused on the one joint and every now and then it would slightly pop. It didn't happen every time though, he was about to give up looking when he caught it out of the corner of his eye.

Might want to give the tie-rod another look, your drag link should be good now.


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