2003 Ford Explorer Vibratiion

Tiny
CTAYLOR3
  • MEMBER
  • 2003 FORD EXPLORER
  • V8
  • 4WD
  • AUTOMATIC
  • 110,000 MILES
Hello,
My ford explorer developes a smooth yet tight vibration in the steering wheel between 50 and 60mph. It's a vibration almost like a wheel bearing but I have had both front wheel bearing replaced, transfer case replaced and drive shaft replaced. If you let go of the steering wheel and let the vehicle run a trure straigh line there is no vibration but as soon as you move the wheel even a 1/16 of a inch to the lef or right you feel the vibration. It does not matter how little you turn or how sharp you turn, you get he same tight vibration. It does this about 98% of the time. It is also worse when pulling hills in higher gears. It does not do it at slower speeds or on donwn hill grades. Is is deffinently on in the tires but more in the axel, hub or drive line. Can you help?
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Friday, October 24th, 2008 AT 7:06 AM

7 Replies

Tiny
MASTERTECHTIM
  • MEMBER
Tires are not scalloped? Balance is ok? Sounds like you covered the basics. I dont know how new tires are but I just had a jeep with this kind of vibration and I needed to replace the tires because what I found was on of the tires had a lot less meat on it causing the left and right tires to fight themselves. I found this by putting a piece of string around center of tire and measuring the circumference of each tire and found a 1/2 inch difference. That was enough to make a vibration. Hope this helps and maybe some of the other guys have more ides.
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Friday, October 24th, 2008 AT 7:13 AM
Tiny
CTAYLOR3
  • MEMBER
Sorry.I forgot to mention that I put 4 new tires on it as well during my process of elimination.
Thanks
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Friday, October 24th, 2008 AT 7:24 AM
Tiny
MASTERTECHTIM
  • MEMBER
Was the noise exactly the same before and after the wheel bearing replacement? Because it sure sounds like a wheel bearing problem. I have had bad bearings right out of the box before.
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Friday, October 24th, 2008 AT 8:00 AM
Tiny
CTAYLOR3
  • MEMBER
The vibration was present all the time prior to changing the wheel bearings but I guess it could be the difference between a old bearing and a defective new bearing.
Should I rule out cv joint and ball joint before I go back and check the new wheel bearings?
Thanks,
Charlie
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Friday, October 24th, 2008 AT 8:11 AM
Tiny
MASTERTECHTIM
  • MEMBER
Id check the cv joints and ball joints for sure. Its not common for those to cause a vibration but is possible. Is this all wheel drive? Is the driveshaft from the transfer case to the front differential a cv joint style at the transfercase? Check the driveshaft cv joint if it is(for looseness) I have seen that shaft go bad but usallly it will vibrate all the time not just turning. Thats why I think more wheel bearing
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Friday, October 24th, 2008 AT 9:53 AM
Tiny
CTAYLOR3
  • MEMBER
It is PT 4X4. The front driver shaft is a CV joint style so I will check that. I dove it today and noticed if I put it in 4X4 high the vibration is a little worse and constant where as it comes and goes in 2 wheel drive. Also. If i'm coasting down hill there is no vibration until it step on the gas.

Strange.
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Friday, October 24th, 2008 AT 1:02 PM
Tiny
MASTERTECHTIM
  • MEMBER
Try grabbing the rear end pinion flange(where the driveshaft bolts to rear diff and front diff) and see if there is any movement up and down. If there is any movement up[ and down then the problem is most likely the pinion bearings.
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Friday, October 24th, 2008 AT 2:23 PM

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