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Discussion Starter #1
Needing some advice on possible causes for continued vibration in steering wheel while after multiple alignments. Beginning in July I felt some vibration in the steering while both at low and definitely at high speed. I've taken it to 2 different Firestones (lifetime alignments) and even the dealership. The latest alignment and balancing showed I had positive camber in both front heels. They fixed it but a couple days later same problem. I had the right wheel bearing replaced in March. I did noticed that my tires were over inflated and were at 40 psi (stock sized SE Yokohama Geolander HTS). Could it be the wheel bearing again? I don't think its the struts cause I replaced them last year with Monroe Sensastracs. Additional info on my X is that its a 2wd SE with the stock 17s. Did have it up in the NC mountains off road up 60 degree gradient but vibration not this bad. I trust the dealership cause I know their alignment guy pretty well. Hope its not the axle, wasn't rock crawlin!
 

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Can you describe the vibration? Is it fast and "buzzy" or slower?

Could be a bad tire, u joints, or bearings. If you replaced 1 bearing, it could be the other, or even the same one(I replaced one of mine with a cheap replacement and it didn't last very long). You can check by jacking the front wheels off the ground and shaking the wheel(grab at 3-9 or 12-6) and you can usually feel the play if the hub is bad.

Any noise or is it only felt? Does it come and go with certain speeds or is it constant, getting worse with speed?
 

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vibration

do you know if there is a shop by you that has roadforce balancer.its different from most balancing machines it cost more but if there is a wheel or tire problem they will find it.hope this helps
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Dealership confirmed that they looked over u joints, wheel bearings and suspension. They state its due to "cupping". I tend to agree with this cause they had mentioned it 9 or 10 months ago about wear,etc. Back then I thought they were just tryin to cross sell me on something. Problems just got progressively worse resulting in me deciding to get the ulimited alignments at Firestone. BUT after 3 alignment jobs (at 2 different firestones) plus 2 by the dealership this summer I can only assume its the tires. What made it worse was Discount Tire overinflated tires! I had them balanced right before I hit the road for a road trip to NC. Not terribly overinflated but they were 40 psi but didn't notice it until I check tire pressure in NC and I live in GA. That explained the outer wear on tires but the damage is does done. Have to buy new tires either way.
 

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Dealership confirmed that they looked over u joints, wheel bearings and suspension. They state its due to "cupping". I tend to agree with this cause they had mentioned it 9 or 10 months ago about wear,etc. Back then I thought they were just tryin to cross sell me on something. Problems just got progressively worse resulting in me deciding to get the ulimited alignments at Firestone. BUT after 3 alignment jobs (at 2 different firestones) plus 2 by the dealership this summer I can only assume its the tires. What made it worse was Discount Tire overinflated tires! I had them balanced right before I hit the road for a road trip to NC. Not terribly overinflated but they were 40 psi but didn't notice it until I check tire pressure in NC and I live in GA. That explained the outer wear on tires but the damage is does done. Have to buy new tires either way.

I had same sort of issues last year. Turned out to be 2 out of round tires. And they were low mileage tires at that. Make sure you watch them check for out of roundness. In my case they had to order 6 new tires to get 4 good ones. Been smooth ever since. Before at 65 and up I got vibes. Now up to 80 is smooth. I do t go faster than that so can't say if its smooth beyond 80. I usually cruise at 70.
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What made it worse was Discount Tire overinflated tires! I had them balanced right before I hit the road for a road trip to NC. Not terribly overinflated but they were 40 psi but didn't notice it until I check tire pressure in NC and I live in GA. That explained the outer wear on tires but the damage is does done. Have to buy new tires either way.
5 psi more tire pressure (40 psi as compared to 35 psi) isn't going to make a difference. It also would wear the CENTER of the tires, not the outside, if they were over inflated.

You haven't specified the vibration yet. Bouncing, throbbing, buzz, can you hear it, etc.?

You said it's in the steering wheel, right? Have you swapped the tires front to rear? Without more info, it sounds like your going after the wrong things (balance, alignment).
 

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Discussion Starter #12
to update everyone just replaced tires due to dealer recommendation and sure enough its still there. I contacted my insurance company who paid a **** load to fix my X after the accident. The got the reports from their repair place and the frame shape/angles are all within specs. Did feel some bounciness in rush hour today goin only a few miles an hour. thinkin may be my struts are bad but that shouldn't cause outer wheel wear. To the point I may trade it for something else. Hate to say it but I may be jumpin on the Jeep bandwagon again like I was in the 90s.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Okay at wits end, 3rd place NTB looked at everything with the same puzzling conclusion. This time the alignment was toed in but no camber issue unlike the alignment a few weeks back at dealership. I've grown attached to my X but it looks like its time to move on. The only other thing I do hear as a lot of squeeking but how would bushings affect things? All say the struts and shocks aren't leaking, bearings are fine (right one replaced in Feb. front passenger which is where I was hit in an accident.)
 

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Hi, sorry youre having the issues with your X,did anyone ever check motor mounts and or trany mounts after the accident. I had an 08 titan 4x4 that had a mystery vibration, not all the time,it just happened to be the mounts
 

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I'm a full time auto mechanic and I can tell you that alignments don't cause vibrations. I agree with rmacknight, check your mounts also if they only "visually" checked your u-joints that doesn't mean they can't be bad. You could also have a weight on the driveshaft that got knocked off in your accident. But seeing that you have a 2wd X then you would mostly feel the vibration in the seat and pedals if it was in the rear driveshaft. Hope this helps. I'll keep trying to think of things and let ya know....good luck
 

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I'm a full time auto mechanic and I can tell you that alignments don't cause vibrations. I agree with rmacknight, check your mounts also if they only "visually" checked your u-joints that doesn't mean they can't be bad. You could also have a weight on the driveshaft that got knocked off in your accident. But seeing that you have a 2wd X then you would mostly feel the vibration in the seat and pedals if it was in the rear driveshaft. Hope this helps. I'll keep trying to think of things and let ya know....good luck


I can tell you that alignments can cause vibration, with a mud tire, especially if it has alternating tread lugs.
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Did you ever specify what kind of vibration you're getting? I don't see anything in the posts. Tire vibes are WAY different than driveline... ??????
 

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I can tell you that alignments can cause vibration, with a mud tire, especially if it has alternating tread lugs.
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But that's the tire causing the vibration not the alignment. I'm saying an out of aligned vehicle will not cause a vibration. :blob3: Yes a bad alignment can wear a tire and make the tread cupped/chopped and in turn cause a vibration. Especially heavy lugged tires. But a bad alignment itself will not cause a vibration. Sorry this is my daily job....)
 
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