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Old 06-21-2011, 05:33 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Steering Wheel Shakes at high speeds going down hill

OK,
I needed new front brakes and what I thought new Rotors. For a very long time my steering wheel would shake really bad when I was going down a steep hill and when getting off the highway. This is how it would happen; I would be going 55 mph and then I hit the brakes and exactly when it hit 50 mph I would get the shake in the steering wheel and then when the speed would go below 50 mph the shake would go away even with my foot still on the brake. I live in a very hilly mountainous area.
So I get my Akebono pads and the shop that I went to, got the Rotors from Atlantic British, the ones that are recommended for the Discovery and what do you know it still happens exactly the same way after all this and yes I got a brake flush.

I wonder if the new rotors are warped, although it really seems to be a coincidence that it happened before and now after. I called the mechanic and asked him if the new rotors may be warped and he said no they were not that it could be a bushing or the back brake rotors. Would bad bushings cause these symptoms?? And I don't think back rotors would be causing this.

How can he know that the new rotors are not warped. Is it something that he was able to check before he put them on??
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Old 06-22-2011, 05:53 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Pull a wheel, spin the rotor. Is straight? No? Then its warped. He could have simply laid them flat on a table to check this when they were off. This isn't some microscopic measurement. It's easy to see.

Get your tires balanced.

Then worry about bushings.
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Old 06-22-2011, 02:36 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Maybe he did this before he put them on. Maybe that is why he told me they were not warped. This happened before and after I had my wheels balanced.

I have some more information. Today, I went to a garage, different one since the one that did the brakes is 1 1/2 hours away and he already told me that it was not the rotors. I wanted the mechanic today to pull off the wheels and check the rotors, but he cannot do that until next Friday June 1. Anyway, he did take the car for a test drive and he noticed something that I have been slightly aware of but did not connect the dots and it came on so slowly that I did not think it was a problem. When I go over bumps and we have many of them in rural New England, the steering wheel does a similar thing. So, he thought it may be a steering wheel shock absorber. This he had time to check and he told me that it felt OK but he was not familiar with how the one on a LR should feel, so he ordered me a new one and he told me that once he gets it if it feels the same he will just send it back. Any thoughts, Thanks!!


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Originally Posted by DarylJ View Post
Pull a wheel, spin the rotor. Is straight? No? Then its warped. He could have simply laid them flat on a table to check this when they were off. This isn't some microscopic measurement. It's easy to see.

Get your tires balanced.

Then worry about bushings.
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Old 06-22-2011, 03:28 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Yeah, not the absorber. You really need to find a mechanic familiar with these trucks.

You quoted my recommendation, and it hasn't changed.
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Old 06-22-2011, 03:39 PM   #5 (permalink)
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You are right. That is why I traveled 1 1/2 hours to get my brakes done. But now he is telling me that it is not the rotors, so I need to find someone local for a second opinion. As far as the balancing, if I already had that done and it was happening before and after do you think that I should do it again? I have no problem with that but just checking. And I am just curious for myself, don't balancing issues usually occur with acceleration speeds not downhill braking?

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Yeah, not the absorber. You really need to find a mechanic familiar with these trucks.

You quoted my recommendation, and it hasn't changed.
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Old 06-22-2011, 03:56 PM   #6 (permalink)
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As far as the balancing, if I already had that done and it was happening before and after do you think that I should do it again? I have no problem with that but just checking. And I am just curious for myself, don't balancing issues usually occur with acceleration speeds not downhill braking?
You never said you had them balanced recently. Even then, you could have thrown a weight, but it's less likely to be the cause if they've been lookd at recently.

You could also swap wheels front to back to see if that makes a difference.

And, yes, I've seen certain balance issues cause problems like what you describe, but it's usually in combination with bad bushings or other suspension components.

This shouldn't be that hard to track down if its bushings or tie rod ends. Not even for someone not familiar with the truck. But definitely for someone who thinks a steering damper will do this (hint: you can take it off and drive without it to check, and a steering damper only MASKS actual steering issues, it does not solve them. Replacing one and finding a "problem" gone is only masking the symptom and not the root cause).
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Old 06-22-2011, 04:41 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LuvLabs View Post
OK,
I needed new front brakes and what I thought new Rotors. For a very long time my steering wheel would shake really bad when I was going down a steep hill and when getting off the highway. This is how it would happen; I would be going 55 mph and then I hit the brakes and exactly when it hit 50 mph I would get the shake in the steering wheel and then when the speed would go below 50 mph the shake would go away even with my foot still on the brake. I live in a very hilly mountainous area.
So I get my Akebono pads and the shop that I went to, got the Rotors from Atlantic British, the ones that are recommended for the Discovery and what do you know it still happens exactly the same way after all this and yes I got a brake flush.

I wonder if the new rotors are warped, although it really seems to be a coincidence that it happened before and now after. I called the mechanic and asked him if the new rotors may be warped and he said no they were not that it could be a bushing or the back brake rotors. Would bad bushings cause these symptoms?? And I don't think back rotors would be causing this.

How can he know that the new rotors are not warped. Is it something that he was able to check before he put them on??

i'm prepared for some disagreements, but i had the exact same issue while stopping. it seemed to be the worst while coming off the highway onto exit ramps. i got new pads and rotors in the front and it was never resolved, and i continued to put up with it for about 3 years. during this time i had all for tires replaced and balanced multiple times, still no resolve.
after i did my lift i had my tie-rod and drag links replaced (complete assemblies) along with my steering damper. and boom, almost all the shake disappeared while stopping, i'd say close to 85% at least. the rest was knocked out as of two weekends ago when i installed new rotors and akebono euro's all the way around.

i'd definitely start with having the tires balanced one more time, (make sure they are a reputable tire shop) but after that start looking at your tie rod, drag link and steering damper. you could just replace the ends but make sure the rods are true first.
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Old 06-22-2011, 04:54 PM   #8 (permalink)
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sorry darylj, i read your last post better and i've basically echoed what you already said. anyways, that was my personal experience with the same prob.

and luvlabs, you mentioned that the similar shake happens when going over bumps, that's an even stronger sign that darylj's diagnosis is correct. you've already done the pads/rotors, i wouldn't go buying anymore rotors. if nothing is overly obvious, your best bet is replacing one part at a time. start with the most likely and work backward.

another way of going about it is: if the truck miles are high enough it might be time for all new front end parts anyways.

if you have any guys near by that part rovers they'd probably give you a spare tie rod and drag link (used ones usually can't be sold.) you could change them out and see if that fixes or lessens the problem .
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Old 09-27-2011, 01:53 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LuvLabs View Post
OK,
I needed new front brakes and what I thought new Rotors. For a very long time my steering wheel would shake really bad when I was going down a steep hill and when getting off the highway. This is how it would happen; I would be going 55 mph and then I hit the brakes and exactly when it hit 50 mph I would get the shake in the steering wheel and then when the speed would go below 50 mph the shake would go away even with my foot still on the brake. I live in a very hilly mountainous area.
So I get my Akebono pads and the shop that I went to, got the Rotors from Atlantic British, the ones that are recommended for the Discovery and what do you know it still happens exactly the same way after all this and yes I got a brake flush.

I wonder if the new rotors are warped, although it really seems to be a coincidence that it happened before and now after. I called the mechanic and asked him if the new rotors may be warped and he said no they were not that it could be a bushing or the back brake rotors. Would bad bushings cause these symptoms?? And I don't think back rotors would be causing this.

How can he know that the new rotors are not warped. Is it something that he was able to check before he put them on??
Did you solve it? .....

I wish that I've read this post before buy a new rotors and Akebono pads for the front and rear!!

I have the same exact problem at 50 MPH ... No solution yet.
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Old 09-27-2011, 02:32 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Does the shaking happen if you slow down and stop going UPHILL? The weight transfer of the truck when you slow down or stop is playing a role here...going downhill and stopping is throwing a lot of weight towards the front. Shocks/struts...steering box...engine mounts...unbalanced tires...bad hubs (actually the last two seem like a stretch to me but ya never know...)
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Old 09-27-2011, 05:08 AM   #11 (permalink)
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My money would be on the ball joints in the tie rod/drag links. I'm on the phone version so I can't see your miles, But if they're high enough it might be that time anyways.

Definitely check for play first in hubs, ball joints and steering box. But my money's on the front end components. At least per my experience.

Get new ball joints and steering damper, go into a reputable shop and have them install the aforementioned parts, also have them do a front end alignment, then a tire balance if your tires are new enough. That's assuming you've already installed your new pads and rotors.

Basically if your tie rod or drag link assemblies are shot any shake or play in them will be magnified by a bad steering damper.
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Old 09-27-2011, 07:47 AM   #12 (permalink)
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There are two kinds of steering wheel shake. Back and forth and just vibration type shaking.
The latter can be caused by out of balance wheels, the former not so much.
Back and forth shaking is normally/most likely steering problems (or warped rotors, but it sounds like that's been addressed). One or more of the 6 ball joints or suspension bushings or a combination of ball joints and bushings.

Sort that out, then get a new steering damper if you get too much shock transfer to the steering wheel when hitting things with just one tire.
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