Steering wheel vibration 50-60mph - Forums at Modded Mustangs
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post #1 of 31 Old September 8th, 2016, 08:47 PM Thread Starter
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Steering wheel vibration 50-60mph

I just recently replaced my tires and had them balanced and aligned hoping that would fix the problem but for the last couple years I have been struggle to figure out where the wheel vibration and right pull is coming from. I feels like the tires are not balanced properly but the wheel only vibrates from 50-60 mph, and every time I get new front tires this always seems to happen and only gets worse as the tires wear. The tires are 245 45 18 all the way around, it's lowered 1.5", and I have had that same size and stance since I bought the car 7 years ago. I have taken the car into 2-3 body/tire shops in the last 18 month and they all say the same thing. "the tires are balanced and aligned with in spec." I have also had the tie rods replaced twice in that time, and less than a year ago I replaced the rack bushings with a harder bushing.

What else should I be looking at?
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post #2 of 31 Old September 8th, 2016, 10:28 PM
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Are your wheels hub centric to the hub, most wheels require the correct plastic adapter so that the wheel rests on the hub and not the studs.

Also if you use sticky weights you can't drive over 65mph for the first 24 hours because the adhesive is still curing.
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post #3 of 31 Old September 8th, 2016, 11:00 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by MineralGreyGT View Post
Are your wheels hub centric to the hub, most wheels require the correct plastic adapter so that the wheel rests on the hub and not the studs.
What? I have never heard of anything like this. Are they part of the wheel or are they separate pieces?
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post #4 of 31 Old September 9th, 2016, 12:32 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MineralGreyGT View Post
Are your wheels hub centric to the hub, most wheels require the correct plastic adapter so that the wheel rests on the hub and not the studs.
What? I have never heard of anything like this. Are they part of the wheel or are they separate pieces?
If it's an aftermarket wheel it should be A Separate Peace http://www.hubcentric-rings.com/why_hub_centric_rings/ pretty much all aftermarket wheels have a large enough bore to accommodate other cars hubs on a car The Hub is what supports the wheel the studs just keep it in place you don't want it the other way around otherwise it's off center and will cause vibration and possibly a bent stud if you hit a pothole hard enough
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post #5 of 31 Old September 9th, 2016, 09:41 AM
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When was the last time you had an alignment?

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post #6 of 31 Old September 9th, 2016, 01:34 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by MineralGreyGT View Post
If it's an aftermarket wheel it should be A Separate Peace http://www.hubcentric-rings.com/why_hub_centric_rings/ pretty much all aftermarket wheels have a large enough bore to accommodate other cars hubs on a car The Hub is what supports the wheel the studs just keep it in place you don't want it the other way around otherwise it's off center and will cause vibration and possibly a bent stud if you hit a pothole hard enough
This is something I will be looking into.

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When was the last time you had an alignment?
Wednesday last week when I got the new tires installed.
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post #7 of 31 Old September 11th, 2016, 01:22 AM
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Have you checked the wheel bearing hubs for play or do you hear any type of groaning sound come from the front? I have a similar vibration on my 01 about the same speed and going to check hubs and ball joints tomorrow.
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post #8 of 31 Old September 11th, 2016, 06:31 AM
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Pulling to the right and a vibration. Have you checked the right front caliper and brake line? A warped rotor usually causes a vibration when you apply the brakes but it never hurts to check.

I had a small vibration in the front going around corners and discovered the front wheel bearings were bad. I had the left front go out at 130,000 miles and the right front go out at 135,000. You might check that.

Finally, I had a slight but constant pulling to the left. When aligning the front wheels they couldn't get the caster the same on both sides. The left was ever so slightly out of tolerance. Even though my car is not lowered I ended up getting caster/camber plates. The caster is now at the very edge of factory but the car now drives straight. Your alignment might be in tolerance but if both sides are not the same you it will pull a little to one side.

Edit: I said camber when I meant caster.

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Last edited by Eagle2000GT; September 11th, 2016 at 08:42 PM.
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post #9 of 31 Old September 11th, 2016, 09:24 AM
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Pulling to the right and a vibration. Have you checked the right front caliper and brake line? A warped rotor usually causes a vibration when you apply the brakes but it never hurts to check.

I had a small vibration in the front going around corners and discovered the front wheel bearings were bad. I had the left front go out at 130,000 miles and the right front go out at 135,000. You might check that.

Finally, I had a slight but constant pulling to the left. When aligning the front wheels they couldn't get the camber the same on both sides. The left was ever so slightly out of tolerance. Even though my car is not lowered I ended up getting caster/camber plates. The camber is now at the very edge of factory but the car now drives straight. You alignment might be in tolerance but if both sides are not the same you it will pull a little to one side.
Good points, I totally missed him stating that it pulled, also I have had a rotor that was so warped it would hit the brake pad on the high spot while driving and would cause vibrations at highway speeds

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post #10 of 31 Old September 11th, 2016, 07:55 PM
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Sub. My mustang does the exact same thing. Around 50 the wheel starts to shake and it pulls to the right.

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post #11 of 31 Old September 11th, 2016, 08:19 PM
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Sub. My mustang does the exact same thing. Around 50 the wheel starts to shake and it pulls to the right.
Does it pull to the right all the time? Can you accelerate past the point of shaking?

99 times out of 100 the shaking is caused by tires. If you swap tires from side to side does the problem go with it? I once hasdthe sidewall of a tire breakdown. It caused the car to pull hard to the right. When I rotated the tire to the other side it pulled hard to the left.

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post #12 of 31 Old September 11th, 2016, 08:30 PM
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Originally Posted by Eagle2000GT View Post
Does it pull to the right all the time? Can you accelerate past the point of shaking?

99 times out of 100 the shaking is caused by tires. If you swap tires from side to side does the problem go with it? I once hasdthe sidewall of a tire breakdown. It caused the car to pull hard to the right. When I rotated the tire to the other side it pulled hard to the left.
Yes i'm able to accelerate out of it, and yes it always pulls. I have swapped tires many times. I haven't had the alignment checked yet though, have been dealing with other issues. So it could just be that.
On a side note, my SHO pulls slightly to the left and I took it in to get aligned. It is perfectly aligned. However the sub frame itself isn't. Maybe this is a similar problem? Probably just needs an alignment for me though.

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post #13 of 31 Old September 11th, 2016, 08:37 PM
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Sounds like your car is dog-tracking. That was common in the old days. You can get such a vehicle to go straight, its just that the rear tire tracks are to one side of the front tire tracks. I once had a front wheel drive Bonneville where rear wheel alignment was as important as front. I've never had the rear wheels aligned on my Mustang. I don't know if its even possible.

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post #14 of 31 Old September 11th, 2016, 09:15 PM
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Originally Posted by Eagle2000GT View Post
Sounds like your car is dog-tracking. That was common in the old days. You can get such a vehicle to go straight, its just that the rear tire tracks are to one side of the front tire tracks. I once had a front wheel drive Bonneville where rear wheel alignment was as important as front. I've never had the rear wheels aligned on my Mustang. I don't know if its even possible.
A Visual Explanation of "Dog Tracking" In A Vehicle | BestTireAndWheelShop.com - YouTube
That was informative. However, its my front sub frame that's off. Its hard to explain, but I basically have to loosen it and straighten it back out, then tighten it down again. The guy explained it to me in a way that make sense and showed me.

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post #15 of 31 Old September 11th, 2016, 09:25 PM
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That was informative. However, its my front sub frame that's off. Its hard to explain, but I basically have to loosen it and straighten it back out, then tighten it down again. The guy explained it to me in a way that make sense and showed me.
OK. Good luck. Let us know how it turns out.

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post #16 of 31 Old September 11th, 2016, 11:58 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Trueblue_01 View Post
Have you checked the wheel bearing hubs for play or do you hear any type of groaning sound come from the front? I have a similar vibration on my 01 about the same speed and going to check hubs and ball joints tomorrow.
I haven't checked them for play and they aren't making any noise.

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Originally Posted by Eagle2000GT View Post
Pulling to the right and a vibration. Have you checked the right front caliper and brake line? A warped rotor usually causes a vibration when you apply the brakes but it never hurts to check.

I had a small vibration in the front going around corners and discovered the front wheel bearings were bad. I had the left front go out at 130,000 miles and the right front go out at 135,000. You might check that.

Finally, I had a slight but constant pulling to the left. When aligning the front wheels they couldn't get the caster the same on both sides. The left was ever so slightly out of tolerance. Even though my car is not lowered I ended up getting caster/camber plates. The caster is now at the very edge of factory but the car now drives straight. Your alignment might be in tolerance but if both sides are not the same you it will pull a little to one side.

Edit: I said camber when I meant caster.
I have had hub bearings go bad before and this doesn't feel like a bad bearing but I will check after work tomorrow. I forgot to mention I do have aftermarket CC plates so alignment shouldn't be limited there. I have noticed that if the alignment isn't almost perfect then it pulls left or right. So maybe the pull is that.

The brakes are just on the edge of pulsing under braking but only just.

Tomorrow I'm going to get the front end up on jacks and check all the rubber bits for play.
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post #17 of 31 Old September 13th, 2016, 10:59 AM Thread Starter
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I got the car up in the air and removed the tires then my wife called so I had to drop the car back down and leave, but before I dropped the car I put the tires back on and checked for play. There is no play what so ever, so I guess that rules out the hub and ball joint... Hopefully I can get a pry bar under there today.

When I put my wheels back on and drove off I noticed the wheel vibration was more intense at highway speed. So I am leaning towards the wheels not centering properly on the hub. I will be getting the spacers MineralGreyGT was referring to earlier to see if that fixes the vibrations.


I am also suspecting my steering rack is going bad. There is play in the steering wheel and the car likes to wander on the road without input from me.
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post #18 of 31 Old September 13th, 2016, 05:38 PM
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Keep us posted on your findings/fix. I do have some side to side play so going to replace hub bearing this weekend.
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post #19 of 31 Old September 15th, 2016, 12:53 AM Thread Starter
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Got the car up in the air this evening and took a pry bar to as many suspension components as I could and everything felt really tight and all the rubber bits looked good. There is also 0 play with the hub bearings and the ball joints. The only play I could find under there was where the steering shaft met the steering gear. I had my wife turn the steering wheel while I was under the car and I noticed the steering shaft moving but the rack ends weren't. I am guessing that might be were the wandering is coming from as well as the sloppy steering.
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post #20 of 31 Old September 26th, 2016, 06:07 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by MineralGreyGT View Post
If it's an aftermarket wheel it should be A Separate Peace http://www.hubcentric-rings.com/why_hub_centric_rings/ pretty much all aftermarket wheels have a large enough bore to accommodate other cars hubs on a car The Hub is what supports the wheel the studs just keep it in place you don't want it the other way around otherwise it's off center and will cause vibration and possibly a bent stud if you hit a pothole hard enough
These arrived and this weekend I finally had time to get them installed. The vibration has gone down a little but it's still pretty bad. I did notice that the lug nuts have a wedge shape on them that fit into a mirrored wedge on the stud hole on the wheels. So as you tighten the lug nuts they would center the wheel to the hub, but I will be keeping these hub spacers to fill in the gab between the hub and wheel.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Eagle2000GT View Post
Sounds like your car is dog-tracking. That was common in the old days. You can get such a vehicle to go straight, its just that the rear tire tracks are to one side of the front tire tracks. I once had a front wheel drive Bonneville where rear wheel alignment was as important as front. I've never had the rear wheels aligned on my Mustang. I don't know if its even possible.
A Visual Explanation of "Dog Tracking" In A Vehicle | BestTireAndWheelShop.com - YouTube
I did a bit of research on this and it is almost impossible for this to happen on our cars with the solid axles, and dog-tracking is really only seen if there has been collision damage to the rear end. My car has been hit a few times but only in parking lots while being parked. So I don't think this was my issue. An easy way to test this is to use a long piece of wood and align it will the tires. If the wood touches the tires in four places on both sides of the car then dog-tracking is most likely not the problem. If the wood touches only one tire then you are probably suffering from dog-tracking.

I am leaning towards and issue with the steering rack. That is really the last thing it could be even though it's not showing the normal signs of wear (noise, difficult steering). I'll be replacing this next with an A1 Cardone reman part from rockauto, and I'll update the thread then.
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