One of the most frustrating problems with car handling is when you feel a vibration and you aren't sure where it's coming from. In most cases, a mild vibration isn't a serious hazard, but there are some situations where you need to be aware of the potential causes for vibration so that you can address more serious problems. Here's a look at what you should be aware of if you're feeling any movement in the front end of your car.
Where Are You Feeling the Vibration?
Sometimes, the area where you feel the vibration can give you important insight into what could be causing it. For example, if the vibration is coming from the front end of the car, it will often exhibit through the steering wheel. Vibrations coming from the rear of the car will often transmit through the car's frame or body, and you'll feel it through the seat. There are some rare variables that can change the way the vibrations are felt, but this is a good baseline.
What Speeds Produce the Vibration?
Some vibrations only occur at certain rates of speed. If you're only feeling it at certain speeds, it often indicates that there's a bent wheel. A vibration that goes away at a given speed is typically an indication of a small bend in the wheel. At certain speeds, the rate of motion will actually overwhelm the suspension's vibration dampening. This often leaves you feeling vibrations at specific speeds and not at others. If this is what you're experiencing, you'll want to have a repair shop evaluate your wheels to see if they are warped or out of round.
How Does the Brake Pedal Feel?
When you're feeling the vibration in the brake pedal under moderate braking pressure, that's a sign that you've got a brake problem. In most cases, it means that the brake rotor is warped and needs to be turned or replaced.
How to Deal With the Symptoms
Once you've narrowed down the details of the vibration, it's time to address the problem. The first step is to check the balance and alignment of your wheels. An auto repair center can help you by taking each wheel off and putting it on the balancer. If the wheel is in balance, then it's time to check the tread and the condition of the brake pads. A tire and brake technician can help you troubleshoot the problem and get your car back on the road safely.
For more information, contact Henneken Auto Sales & Service Ltd. or a similar company.