Vibration at highway speed

Tiny
MMTOM
  • MEMBER
  • DODGE NEON
I've got a 2003 SRT-4 (neon, 2.4L Turbo) with 77,000 miles on it. Back in December, I had both of the front wheel bearings replaced by the dealer. When I got my car back, I found that it shakes pretty badly at highway speeds (70+). I've replaced the following to try to fix the problem:

Tie-rod ends
Control arm bushings (replaced with polyurethane bushings), front and rear front-LCA bushings.
Sway bar bushings
End link bushings
Had summer and winter tires on the car, and had both sets balanced
Had two alignments

All of these things, and the car still shakes. It's fine under wide-open throttle, but at 70 it shakes. No vibration under acceleration or anything, so I've ruled out axles. Could it be the CV joints? Given the speed at which dealer ships are forced to get the car out the door, could they have damaged the CV joint while removing the knuckle during the bearing work?

Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.
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Friday, April 13th, 2007 AT 9:20 PM

9 Replies

Tiny
SERVICE WRITER
  • EXPERT
I don't like to spread paranoia, but your last paragraph may be quite accurate.


http://www.2carpros.com/forum/automotive_pictures/30961_axshft_1.jpg



As you can see, there is great care needing to be taken when doing wheel bearings.
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Saturday, April 14th, 2007 AT 5:43 AM
Tiny
MMTOM
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Yeah, that's exactly why I was worried about it. I have the service manual and saw that in there.
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Saturday, April 14th, 2007 AT 12:28 PM
Tiny
SERVICE WRITER
  • EXPERT
As much as I hate to say it, I have never seen a tech....err...mechanic, do anything other than using a pnuematic hammer to drive them out. Having said that I am not aware of having aproblem of doing so.


http://www.2carpros.com/forum/automotive_pictures/30961_irritated_1.jpg

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Saturday, April 14th, 2007 AT 3:33 PM
Tiny
MMTOM
  • MEMBER
Well, I'll take it to my mechanic sometime this week, have them re-balance the wheels, (it seems to be worse after balancing the wheels this last time at the tire place), and if that fails, have them check out the CV joints. Maybe inspect the half-shafts and verify that they're installed properly.

I have noticed that the car shakes badly, then while going around a curve on the freeway, it will stop shaking, even after I straighten out. As soon as I turn, change lanes, or anything else, it goes crazy again.
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Sunday, April 15th, 2007 AT 7:06 PM
Tiny
MMTOM
  • MEMBER
Ok.I had the front right axle shaft replaced. Still not fixed.

At this point, I'm starting to think bad motor mounts. Here's why:

When I'm on the freeway, and the wheel is vibrating, if I go into a curve, the vibration will slowly disappear, then go away completely. This lasts for a few seconds, and then will slow return until it's shaking at it's normal "speed." Going around a curve the other way makes it happen again. If I exit the curve while the shaking has stopped, it will stay that way, until I hit another curve or change lanes.

Is it possible for a bad motor mount to cause a lateral motion of the motor? If the whole motor is moving, it'll definitely throw everything out.

I've also noticed that shifting has been weird. If I get on it in first gear, and go to shift into second, I can't. It just WON'T go into gear for a few seconds (until everything had "settled").
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Tuesday, May 29th, 2007 AT 2:40 PM
Tiny
SERVICE WRITER
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I'm just gonna throw a thought out there. Wheel bearings are more apt to be stressed on turns than when going straight. This is used when diagnosing a wheel bearing noise. SInce the vibration was not present prior to the wheel bearing change, it would give the impression of a wheel bearing problem or axle problem. It may not hurt, albeit a long shot to check the wheel bearing part numbers and verify they are for that car. For example, we had a PT cruiser (which is for intents of this discussion the same thing), that had the wrong wheel bearing installed for (a vibration I think) at another reputable shop. A different problem cropped up that the person lived with for a few years, until we stumbled onto an abnormality. We contacted the first shop, who gave us the part number they put on and checked it against the dealer's application guide. The part numbers were different due to a counterman's error. Not likely this happened in your case, but worth finding out. With out driving and feeling the vibration, it is hard to say.
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Tuesday, May 29th, 2007 AT 5:27 PM
Tiny
MMTOM
  • MEMBER
Well, the shake actually goes away and "shifts" during a turn. If I get on the freeway in a straight line, and I'm going in a straight line, it'll shake. As soon as I hit a bend in the freeway, it goes away, then slowly comes back.

The vibration wasn't present, but that could have been because the play in the bad bearings was masking the side-to-side motion. I doubt I have my SO from the dealer work, so I'll have to contact the dealer and see what they used. Thanks for the advice.
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Tuesday, May 29th, 2007 AT 5:46 PM
Tiny
SERVICE WRITER
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Yeah, thats what I meant. The side force will tighten up any minute slop. IF you have a metal clunk or click on a turn for example, that very well can be a wheel bearing. Most notably mopar ones. You can recreate it my hard aggressive heavy turns and such, but when you shake down the wheel there is no play. I'm not trying to sell you that you have bad wheel bearings, but moreso opening a view that may help you in your quest.
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Tuesday, May 29th, 2007 AT 8:31 PM
Tiny
ONEIL
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Change the tires. They are cupped. Out of round.
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Saturday, April 5th, 2008 AT 6:31 PM

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