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Old 07-19-2010, 06:47 AM   #1
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Shaky Steering Wheel

Recently put on a 3.5" suspension lift with 33's on. But now between 30-40mph my steering wheel shakes like crazy. Any idea what is causing this? And/or what needs to be done to fix it?

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Old 07-19-2010, 07:33 AM   #2
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First - wheel alignment, then check everything is tight under the front end.

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Old 07-19-2010, 08:18 AM   #3
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Alignment and check the torque on the lugs, often if it shakes at certain speeds only it's due to mistorqued lugs.
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Old 07-19-2010, 09:50 AM   #4
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A shaky steering wheel, more commonly called a shimmy, is caused by a tire problem. One or more tires is out of balance or out of round. Shimmy is never caused by a bad front-end alignment though that can cause a tire to go bad which can then cause a shimmy.
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Old 07-19-2010, 11:33 AM   #5
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I called a few tire places and since I have bags inside the tires to balance them. They say it is normal to have the shimmy in the steering wheel due to the bags having to balance themselves out. I have a hard time believing that. I have gotten them to rebalance my tires 2 different times by different places and both say they are balanced. But nothing has fixed the shimmy.
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Old 07-19-2010, 11:37 AM   #6
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Then try an alignment
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Old 07-19-2010, 11:40 AM   #7
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Nothin to say about the shaky wheel, just excited to see another Longhorn on the forum!!
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Old 07-19-2010, 11:48 AM   #8
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I am going to try and remove the bags out of the tires and add weights. If that doesn't work then I'll redo the alignment.
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Old 07-19-2010, 12:25 PM   #9
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Find a tire shop that has a Road Force tire balancing machine. It's expensive so not many have one. For really difficult to balance tires, a Road Force is the machine to use.

I assure you that a bad alignment will not cause a shimmy or vibration. A bad alignment can cause accelerated tire wear, uneven tire wear, poor steering, or pulling to the side but it won't cause a shimmy.
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Old 07-19-2010, 03:28 PM   #10
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ive had the same problem since i bought mine a month ago. ive had a alignment done, it helped, but it didnt fix the problem. i also noticed that there wasnt any wheel weights on one of my wheels so i had them balanced, still that didnt fix the problem. ive had a couple people tell me to put a new steering dampner on it. is that just a temporary fix or could that actually be my problem?
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Old 07-19-2010, 04:57 PM   #11
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A steering dampener would be, at best even if it helped, a temporary solution.

Quite often, getting bigger Jeep size tires balanced on the usual tire balancing machines will produce imperfectly balanced tires. That happened the last time my local Discount Tire store offered me a free tire balance on his regular machine. The only way I get perfectly shimmy-free tires is when I pay extra to have them use their Road Force tire balance machine. It takes more time and a specially trained person to run it but the results (no shimmy) are worth it.

Call around until a shop says they have a Road Force machine. Most won't even know what it is so be sure it's a true Road Force which is a specific brand-name. I have to do the same thing, my 35" MT/R tires were last balanced on a regular machine which didn't do the trick. For bigger tires, a Road Force is often the only machine that can get tires perfectly balanced.
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Old 07-19-2010, 05:04 PM   #12
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I had a Suburban prior to my Jeep, and at 50-60 mph the steering wheel shook like crazy. I hated to drive next to people because I looked like I had a palsy.... It was bad. Had all sorts of stuff checked on it, and finally while it was in for some exhaust upgrades, I mentioned it to my muffler guy, and he retorqued the lugs and it drove perfectly after that. He told me then it was pretty common. That is why I always suggest this when someone has a similar complaint. Tire monkeys don't always check the torque or torque them in the proper pattern, and they do need to be re torqued after a hundred miles or so of driving when they've been removed for what ever reason.....
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Old 07-19-2010, 05:53 PM   #13
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Whats the recomended torque spec? is it just like a normal spec or does it matter with what size of a tire you have? this is my first 4x4 so its a whole new world to me.
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Old 07-19-2010, 07:41 PM   #14
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Pretty sure it's between 90-110 ftlbs... Star pattern..... Tire size shouldn't matter.
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Old 07-19-2010, 07:46 PM   #15
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It's something like 85 to 115 ft-lbs, I tighten mine to 90 ft-lbs. I also put a dab of antiseize on the threads before screwing the lug nuts on which helps prevent them from seizing on the studs later.
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Old 07-20-2010, 06:56 AM   #16
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I will have to check around for this Road Force machine and see how it works out.

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