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Tracking down a vibration #4868298
09/14/18 05:30 AM
09/14/18 05:30 AM
Joined: Sep 2007
Posts: 137
Michigan
Loogie Offline OP
Loogie  Offline OP

Joined: Sep 2007
Posts: 137
Michigan
2009 Impala. Replaced the driver's side wheel bearing as it was clearly trashed. The others seem fine, no play, but I'm aware that there can be vibration without easily detectable play.

The vibration from the bearing is gone, but there is still a lower volume droning and vibration.
The sound and vibration isn't severe, but noticeable at all speeds. It doesn't change during stops, acceleration or turns.
I'm trying to rule out components..

The tires are in good shape (Michelin Defenders, a little over a year old), properly balanced, and I had an alignment done a few months ago. Replaced the brakes a bit over a year ago with Akebono pads and Centric rotors.

Bearings: there is no discernable play at the wheels. Maybe I should attain a dial indicator to check for bearing play...but I'm not sure of the accuracy of this method.

CV joint/axle: The car has 130k miles, so this is high on my differential.
I've tried turning the wheel to the lock and driving slowly in a circle forward and reverse with the windows down, there is no noise.
The boots appear to be in great shape, though I need to inspect them more carefully.
Interestingly, there is a single muted pop when sitting in the driveway and turning the wheel left or right (I think it is slightly louder in one direction, but I don't recall which). Apparently there was a TSB regarding a frame connection causing this issue, but I suppose it could be the CV joint or another suspension part.

I'm considering replacing both axles, as the cost wouldn't be bad (kind of a big job though), and I assume they are well worn.

Brakes: the rotors/calipers/pads look fine, and my non-contact thermometer shows no discrepancy.
But there is another issue that raises suspicion.
They often operate smoothly, but intermittently vibrate substantially, especially at highway speeds. Feels like "warped rotor syndrome."
I wonder if the rotors are heating up, causing distortion.

The main vibration issue is continuous, so brakes seem to be low probability.
I will take a closer look at the rotors and pads anyway. I may install new front rotors just to rule them out since it is a fast, inexpensive job.

Tires: via cursory inspection, they appear to be wearing normally. I rotate them every 6 months.
I'm going to try to rule out the tires by rotating them to see if there is any change.

Other suspension parts: Visually they are fine.

Any suggestions or ideas?

Many thanks,
Bob

Re: Tracking down a vibration [Re: Loogie] #4868314
09/14/18 06:22 AM
09/14/18 06:22 AM
Joined: Feb 2011
Posts: 7,155
Hudson, NH
LeakySeals Offline
LeakySeals  Offline

Joined: Feb 2011
Posts: 7,155
Hudson, NH
Does this happen at certain speeds or rpms, like accelerating onto the highway for example.


06 Escalade 6.0L LQ9 AWD 167k M1 0w40
03 Maxima 3.5L POS 170k ST HM 10w30
05 Malibu Classic 109k Unk
Re: Tracking down a vibration [Re: Loogie] #4868356
09/14/18 07:54 AM
09/14/18 07:54 AM
Joined: Nov 2006
Posts: 21,535
MA, Mittelfranken.de
Trav Offline
Trav  Offline

Joined: Nov 2006
Posts: 21,535
MA, Mittelfranken.de
It is quite possibly inner CV joint vibration. There is the misconception that as long as the boot is in good condition the joint must be okay, this is 100% false.
The grease thins out and liquefies, at this point it is just hanging on to the walls of the boot and is no longer in the joint protecting it from wear.
Luckily OE CV axles for this car are reasonably priced at Rock Auto. Do not used remans or new Chinese, you will be doing the job over and over again.


ASE L1, Master. Deutsch Meisterbrief.
Re: Tracking down a vibration [Re: Loogie] #4868370
09/14/18 08:06 AM
09/14/18 08:06 AM
Joined: Jun 2003
Posts: 18,633
Deplorable in apple valley, ca
Chris142 Offline
Chris142  Offline

Joined: Jun 2003
Posts: 18,633
Deplorable in apple valley, ca
My shoot from the hip guess is an inner CV joint.


02 Wrangler carlube 5w30
87 F250 traveler 15w40
07 fjcruiser Chevron 10w30
Z400 castrol T 10w40
Can am maveric edge 5w40
57 case tractor 15w40
Re: Tracking down a vibration [Re: Loogie] #4868488
09/14/18 10:21 AM
09/14/18 10:21 AM
Joined: Jan 2013
Posts: 2,606
Texas
WyrTwister Offline
WyrTwister  Offline

Joined: Jan 2013
Posts: 2,606
Texas
You said the noise does not stop when the car is stopped ?


Wyr
God bless
Re: Tracking down a vibration [Re: Loogie] #4868498
09/14/18 10:29 AM
09/14/18 10:29 AM
Joined: Mar 2017
Posts: 8,760
...
PimTac Offline
PimTac  Offline

Joined: Mar 2017
Posts: 8,760
...
Motor mounts?


Cannot see signatures any longer so it doesn’t matter.
Re: Tracking down a vibration [Re: Loogie] #4868745
09/14/18 02:58 PM
09/14/18 02:58 PM
Joined: Nov 2006
Posts: 21,535
MA, Mittelfranken.de
Trav Offline
Trav  Offline

Joined: Nov 2006
Posts: 21,535
MA, Mittelfranken.de
Originally Posted by Loogie

The sound and vibration isn't severe, but noticeable at all speeds. It doesn't change during stops, acceleration or turns.
I'm trying to rule out components..

Interestingly, there is a single muted pop when sitting in the driveway and turning the wheel left or right (I think it is slightly louder in one direction, but I don't recall which).


I just noticed this. If its idling does it vibrate? If so its possible it has a bad front engine mount (pass side), look for oil around this mount area as its oil filled. A blown mount here will change the CV angle and can cause symptoms similar to a bad inner joint.


ASE L1, Master. Deutsch Meisterbrief.
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