Rough ride after sitting a long time

Tiny
VEIDTMEISTER
  • MEMBER
  • 2003 DODGE RAM
  • 42,000 MILES
My truck sat in one place for almost two years, as I broke my back, and was unable to drive for like. Ever.
When I finally got physically able to drive, I was able to replace fluids, and fire it right up. It runs great, w/ the exception of a slight "bump". Or not really a bump, but a slightly rough ride when driving. It feels like the tires are "bumpy". Theres no sway, or pull, or road wander. Its just a slightly rough ride. Im wondering if the tires sitting for so long might have affected the balance, and if I should maybe have them rebalanced and rotated, BEFORE I take it in, and have someone tell me to have it aligned, replace the shocks/struts. Etc.
The tires were low when I got it running, but a quick shot of air, and they all held air fine. I dont see any visible "flat spots" on the tires, or tire deformation of any kind.
Thoughts? Im trying to save some cash here.
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Wednesday, August 31st, 2011 AT 7:59 PM

7 Replies

Tiny
JACOBANDNICKOLAS
  • EXPERT
Chances are there are flat spots in the tires that should fix themself. Also, there could be issues with wheel bearings (rust) if it sat in a damp area.
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Wednesday, August 31st, 2011 AT 8:05 PM
Tiny
VEIDTMEISTER
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Aha. Thanks for the fast reply. I guess I should drive it for a bit before I freak out, and see if the ride improves. As for the possibility of wheel bearing issues.I live in Texas, where it rains like 3 times a year. Haha. But now that you mention it. One of my wheel covers (right front), is noticably more stained.I guess it could be rust, whereas the other wheel covers look fine. I think theres a sprinkler head in the yard by where that tire was sitting in the driveway, and I guess its possible that that tire got sprayed a lot during that time. Is there a way for me to check to see if thats the issue, and what should I do about it? Again, thanks for the super fast response!
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Wednesday, August 31st, 2011 AT 8:10 PM
Tiny
JACOBANDNICKOLAS
  • EXPERT
If it is that, it may go away on its own. If you want, you need to remove the weight from the wheel and check to see if there is excessive play in the bearing. As far as driving it, if it feels totally unsafe, have it checked. However, I just pulled a car out of storage for only a year and it did the same thing. It had new tires but they fixed themself.
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Wednesday, August 31st, 2011 AT 8:17 PM
Tiny
VEIDTMEISTER
  • MEMBER
Thanks so much for the info. No. It doesn't feel unsafe at all, its just more of a slight irritation more than anything. I'll try as you suggested, but Im not sure what Im looking for. If I jack it up, how do I test it for excessive play?
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Wednesday, August 31st, 2011 AT 8:21 PM
Tiny
JACOBANDNICKOLAS
  • EXPERT
See if there is play back and forth in the bearing by shaking the wheel. Let me know what you find.
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Thursday, September 1st, 2011 AT 1:14 AM
Tiny
VEIDTMEISTER
  • MEMBER
Sorry I havent had time to work on the truck in a few weeks. Anyway, I jacked it up, and checking for play in the front tires, I couldnt find any at all, just a bit of scraping from rust on the front discs. While under the vehicle though, I found two "boots" which Im assuming are lower balljoint boots, that were "ruptured", with little grease hanging out of whats left of the boots. Would this cause a rough ride? Not sure if I can tackle this one. What ballpark at repair estimate am I looking at, and what terminology could I use so they dont think Im a "rube" and try to take me to the cleaners. Or do you think I could try this one myself?
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Wednesday, September 21st, 2011 AT 7:03 PM
Tiny
JACOBANDNICKOLAS
  • EXPERT
I hate to say it, but I can't tell what I'm looking at because of the angle. If they are the ball joints, there is a rubber boot that is a dust cover. When they are greased, many times some of the greased will leak out. The one picture looks like a control arm bushing. But I think they are the ball joints. The steel shield ius confusing me. By the way, grease around the ball joint won't cause a rough ride.
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Thursday, September 22nd, 2011 AT 12:22 AM

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