Troubleshooting Problems with Steering and Suspension | Penney Auto Body & Glass Vancouver

Troubleshooting Problems with Steering and Suspension | Penney Auto Body & Glass Vancouver

Your car's suspension system is designed to give you a smooth, stable ride. Since the suspension takes the most road abuse, with parts wearing out and even breaking. If your car doesn't drive like it used to, you may have a problem.

MONEY SAVER
Before you start replacing car parts, it's a good idea to check all of the nuts and bolts to be sure the problem isn't caused by simple looseness.

SYMPTOM: PULLING TO ONE SIDE WHILE DRIVING

  • Low or uneven tire pressure - check tire inflation.
  • Uneven tire wear - check front tires for even wear and replace both front tires.
  • Poor alignment - check and adjust wheel alignment.
  • Poor steering components - inspect tie rods and steering rack.
  • Sticking brake caliper - inspect brakes for uneven wear or excessive heat. Repair as needed


SYMPTOM: FLIP-FLOP WHEEL SHIMMY 
Wheels seem to wander and wiggle rapidly back and forth.

  • Low or uneven tire pressure - check tire inflation.
  • One or more wheels out of balance - have wheels balanced.
  • Uneven or excessive tire wear - replace in pairs.
  • Vehicle out of alignment - check and adjust your wheel alignment.
  • Worn steering components - inspect tie rods and steering rack for excessive play and repair if needed.


SYMPTOM: PORPOISING OVER BUMPS OR UNEVEN ROADS 
Porpoising, aka bouncing, dipping, diving. Car keeps going up and down after you go over a bump.

  • Worn shocks or struts - replace shocks and/or struts.
  • Broken or slipped leaf spring - inspect leaf springs and repair or replace as needed.


SYMPTOM: STEERING SEEMS TO BE SLIPPING
As you turn the wheel or hold it in a turned position, it feels like its slipping slightly back and forth.

  • Low power steering fluid - add fluid as needed.
  • Loose or worn power steering belt - tighten or replace belt.
  • Bad power steering pump - have checked for pressure and replace if needed.
  • Leaking power steering rack - inspect steering rack for leaks and replace rack if needed.
  • Broken steering rack mounts - inspect mounts for excessive play and repair as needed


SYMPTOM: HARD TO STEER
Wheel is hard to turn, especially while moving at slow speed.

  • Low power steering fluid - add fluid as needed.
  • Loose or worn power steering belt - tighten or replace belt.
  • Bad power steering pump - have checked for pressure and replace if needed.
  • Power steering rack is leaking - inspect steering rack for leaks and replace rack if needed.


SYMPTOM: STEERING WHEEL VIBRATES AT SPEED 
Excessive vibration while traveling a constant speed, especially highway speeds.

  • Wheels out of balance - have wheels re-balanced.
  • Tires worn unevenly or excessively
  • Loose wheel bolts - check wheel lugs are correctly tight.
  • Warped brake rotor - your brake discs may need replacing.

SYMPTOM: LOOSE OR SLOPPY STEERING
Steering has excessive play and wanders from side to side.

  • Power steering fluid low - check power steering fluid and add if needed.
  • Worn strut bearings - inspect strut bearings for play and replace in pairs.
  • Worn or broken tie rods or steering rack - inspect steering components and replace as necessary.
  • Worn ball joints - inspect ball joints and replace if needed.
  • Broken steering rack mounts - inspect steering rack mounts and repair or replace (some cars can be fixed, others require replacement of the entire steering rack.)

SYMPTOM: CLUNKING OVER BUMPS
Feeling clunks and knocks through the steering wheel when you go over bumps or even cracks in the road.

  • Worn shocks or struts - replace shocks and/or struts as indicated.
  • Worn strut bearings - inspect strut bearings and replace both if needed.
  • Worn ball joints - inspect ball joints for play and replace if needed.


SYMPTOM: SCREECHING AND SCREAMING
Steering emits loud screeching when steering at low speeds, such as parking.

  • Low power steering fluid - add power steering fluid as needed.
  • Loose power steering belt - adjust power steering belt.
  • Worn power steering belt - replace and adjust power steering belt.

 

 

 

Penney Auto Body & Glass, Vancouver’s Auto Body Collision Repair Shop, is an expert in paint and body repair and cares about the welfare of your car and your personal safety. If you get involved in an automotive accident or you're a victim of a vehicle break-in or theft be sure to contact Penney Auto Body for your auto body, collision repair, and car painting services.

 

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