Broken Axis and Flat Tire Closeup Shot of Front of Wrecked Car

Never Ignore the Roar of Wheel Bearings

October 3, 2018 10:20 pm Published by Leave your thoughts

You never exactly want to hear unusual noises coming from your vehicle, but there are certain noises that should lead you to immediately seek expert attention from a mechanic in Madison, TN. For example, if you’re driving down the road and hear an extremely loud noise coming from under the hood of your car, it’s almost never going to be anything good—it could, for example, be a broken (or nearly broken) wheel bearing that is creating so much ruckus.

Wheel bearings are crucial for the safe operation of your vehicle. They keep the hub, tire and wheel assembly all working together properly. The bearings create friction-free rotation and movement of the entire hub assembly, making for smoother rotation of the wheel and tire. If you have a bad wheel bearing, you’ll notice problems such as:

  • Noise: Again, listen carefully. The single most common symptom that leads people to discover issues with their wheel bearings is noise that comes from the wheel or tire area of the vehicle while it’s in motion. While you may mistake this for standard engine noise, you’ll notice upon further review that it’s a grating or grinding noise that gets even louder as you accelerate the vehicle. People don’t usually think of wheel bearings when they hear these types of noises, but it’s certainly a common issue worth considering.
  • Loose feeling: What exactly do we mean by a vehicle that feels “loose”? Basically, as you’re driving your vehicle, it might feel as though the steering wheel feels loose while you turn it. This is a common symptom of a bad bearing—when the bearing begins to wear down, it becomes loose inside the wheel spindle and hub, which causes that “loose” feeling as you operate the car.
  • Tires: As you likely know, it’s important to regularly rotate your tires to ensure they wear evenly. A bad wheel bearing creates uneven tire wear, so if you’ve noticed issues with uneven wear developing in your tires, this could very well be the problem. The looseness of the wheel combined with the vibrations in the vehicle create this uneven wear, and could force you to purchase new tires sooner than you’d otherwise hope.
  • Steering feedback: Do you feel like you have complete control over your steering, or is the car giving a little feedback and swaying you to one side or the other? A corroded or pitted wheel bearing will no longer have the smooth exterior lining that soaks up some of the vibrations of the vehicle, meaning those vibrations get transmitted to the tires instead. This could result in you feeling like the vehicle is pulling you to either side.

These are just a few of the symptoms that could indicate you’re having problems with your wheel bearings. You’re going to want to get these issues checked out as soon as possible, as bad wheel bearings could be a safety hazard for your vehicle. Contact Rivergate Muffler & Auto Repair to speak with a mechanic in Madison, TN and learn more.

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