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Old 04-20-2004, 09:40 AM   #1 (permalink)
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car pulls hard and wheel shakes :-(

so ive had this problem for awhile now. i just replaced my drivers side axle because the cv boot was torn and in reality the car now pulls even harder. under normal driving the car always wants to go left a little. under heavy acceleration the car is extremely hard to keep from going left, as its like its jumping to the side. if im accelerating hard it jumps left to the point where it would switch lanes completely in 2 car lengths. if i hold the wheel straight the car goes straight so i dont have to counter steer against the pull, just keep it straight. if i brake hard the car barely pulls to the side at all. the steering feels really unstable at high speeds, and the wheel shakes and feels aweful. it feels too easy to turn unlike it should and im not getting enough proper feedback. it also acts up especially when braking at high speeds. its not a warped rotor thing or feeling because sometimes it does it when i brake, sometimes it doesnt so its not consistant. its just not a warped rotor feel either. the wheel shakes slightly day to day driving also, mainly when i let off the gas. what do you guys think this is?
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Old 04-20-2004, 09:59 AM   #2 (permalink)
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alignment?
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Old 04-20-2004, 10:17 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Something very similar to this happened with my car when I first got it. It would lurch to one side when I would take off fast or do a hard shift from 1st to 2nd. I think it ended up being one of my tires being really worn on one side (like down to the cords). I got new tires and the problem immediately went away. So you might want to check your tires/alignment.
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Old 04-20-2004, 01:26 PM   #4 (permalink)
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inner tierod end maybe? i have the same symptoms. getting it fixed next week. i will come back and let u know if the problem goes away
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Old 04-20-2004, 01:41 PM   #5 (permalink)
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^^ Yup....sounds like a busted inner tie rod.

You should also get an alignment......go to someplace like firestone or sears where you get about 6 months warranty or so. They will do the alignment and tell you what else is wrong with the car.

Some things to check:

-Tire pressure
-Tread on tires (worn unevenly)
-The weights on the tires may have fallen off and could have thrown everything off balance. I'm sure there's more but that's all I could think of off the top of my head. Good luck.

EDIT | Weights are on the wheels...not tires...sorry.
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Old 04-20-2004, 03:56 PM   #6 (permalink)
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well the tires are worn unevenly, but it doesnt make any sense to me. i have one brand new tire on the drivers side with alot more tread, and if you think about it that should be making the car pull to the RIGHT instead. the tire pressure is fine and the wheel weights are still intact.


EDIT: still learning my left from my right aparently.
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Last edited by tastyratz; 04-20-2004 at 10:32 PM.
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Old 04-20-2004, 06:30 PM   #7 (permalink)
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"that should be making the car pull to the left instead"

doesn't it pull to the left?
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Old 04-20-2004, 08:01 PM   #8 (permalink)
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^^ True!
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Old 04-20-2004, 10:32 PM   #9 (permalink)
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sorry still learning left from right, post edited. youll have to excuse my moment of negative IQ
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Old 04-21-2004, 08:54 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Strut-rod bushings or something along those lines could be the problem.
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Old 04-22-2004, 08:23 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Strut rod bushings?? Doubt it..

It most likely is an alignment problem. You should always do an alignment after replacing a tie rod, cv joint, etc. It sounds like you have excessive negative toe on the driver side front, pointing your wheel outwards (not camber). You can test to see if you have a worn/failing tie rod end by shaking the wheel lightly from side to side to check for play. If it's tight, then get an alignment, if it's loose, the play is either from a tie rod end (almost positively inner, since it's load carrying) or a wheel bearing. You'd hear a defective wheel bearing though. Either way, get an alignment.

EDIT: Remember, if you do have a bad inner tie rod and you say, "Ahh, I'll just get an alignment now and see if that fixes anything", you will get a false reading on the alignment machine.
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Old 04-23-2004, 12:39 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by Preyluder
Strut rod bushings?? Doubt it..
What's your logic behind doubting what I said?

I'm speaking from experience. If the strut rod isn't fastened tightly or the the strut-rod bushings are worn it will cause change in caster, which leads to change of directions (pull to a different side). This will happen under breaking or accelerating.

tastyratz,

Since you said the car pulls left under normal driving then you have alignment problem. You should have alignment done whenever you do any kind of suspension work.
This is also good time to check joints and tie-rods for play. If any of the tie-rods have play in them it's a good idea to have all four replaced (inner and outer). Any good aligment shop will check for problems prior to doing wheel alignment.
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Old 04-23-2004, 03:52 PM   #13 (permalink)
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^Well, since the front wheels are connected to the steering knuckle, I highly doubt a defective strut rod bushing would cause a car to pull. If anything, you'd hear the strut bracket clangin' around, but I've never seen that happen, especially with a Honda.

Caster, just so you know is the forward or rearward tilt of the steering axis in reference to a vertical line as viewed from the side of the vehicle. Positive caster (which is what you want) promotes directional stability of the wheel. So if you have a caster problem, at speeds, you'd feel a vibration, and if it's bad enough, it might pull, you could be right, but I think it's more of a toe problem because toe controls whether the wheels roll in the direction of travel. If his wheel is pointing out, he most definitely will be pulling to the left because the wheel will essentially be dragging across the ground.

tastyratz, are you experiencing any unusual tire wear? This could be an indicator considering caster does NOT affect tire wear and toe does very much so.

vtecprelude, also, what's your reasoning behind saying replace all tie rods if one is failing? I've never heard of that before. I replaced an inner tie rod just two days ago at work on a Cavalier and I definitely did not replace all of them while I was at it.
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Old 04-23-2004, 10:45 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by Preyluder
^Well, since the front wheels are connected to the steering knuckle, I highly doubt a defective strut rod bushing would cause a car to pull. If anything, you'd hear the strut bracket clangin' around, but I've never seen that happen, especially with a Honda.

Caster, just so you know is the forward or rearward tilt of the steering axis in reference to a vertical line as viewed from the side of the vehicle. Positive caster (which is what you want) promotes directional stability of the wheel. So if you have a caster problem, at speeds, you'd feel a vibration, and if it's bad enough, it might pull, you could be right, but I think it's more of a toe problem because toe controls whether the wheels roll in the direction of travel. If his wheel is pointing out, he most definitely will be pulling to the left because the wheel will essentially be dragging across the ground.

tastyratz, are you experiencing any unusual tire wear? This could be an indicator considering caster does NOT affect tire wear and toe does very much so.

vtecprelude, also, what's your reasoning behind saying replace all tie rods if one is failing? I've never heard of that before. I replaced an inner tie rod just two days ago at work on a Cavalier and I definitely did not replace all of them while I was at it.
"you'd feel a vibration" Where is that coming from...!?
"defective strut rod bushing " Who sad it's defective?

I know what caster is.

You are right about what caster is, but some of that other stuff in the first two paragraphs makes no sense. I get the feeling you are not speaking from experience. Most likely a mechanic's fault not placing the bushings properly or forgetting to tighten the strut. Anyway, enough of this.

Tire wear is most likely due to incorrect toe or worn tie-rods, no way around it.

It makes sense to replace all tie-rods once one of them is bad. Chances are others are bad too or are about to go bad. Since alignment is NEEDED every time one of them is replaced, replacing all 4 at the same time saves costs on alignemnt. You can do it the ghetto way or the right way. That's what seperates a good mechanic from a bad one. Good mechanics are hard to come by.

Last edited by vtecprelude; 04-23-2004 at 10:58 PM.
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