opinion in what is the next step for death wobble? - Jeep Wrangler Forum
Jeep Wrangler Forum

Go Back   Jeep Wrangler Forum > TJ Jeep Wrangler Forum > TJ General Discussion Forum

Join Wrangler Forum Today


Reply
 
Thread Tools

Please support our sponsors and let them know you heard about them on WranglerForum.com
Old 07-26-2014, 10:02 PM   #1
Jeeper
 
rraa497's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Posts: 33
opinion in what is the next step for death wobble?

I have been dealing with the death wobble for awhile now and I am tired of not being able to drive my jeep! I have replaced the track bar with an JKS. Just replaced the whole drag link and end. Both the inner and outer tie rod ends. I'm thinking either it's the ball joints or the control arms. They both are worn out. I just don't have money for both. Which would be more of a cure?
2000 Wrangler TJ
2" Tera flex BBC
1" MML

rraa497 is offline   Quote Quick Reply
Old 07-26-2014, 10:27 PM   #2
Jeeper
 
Rickys03svt.cobra's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2013
Location: nanticoke pa
Posts: 142
check ur control arm bushings and make sure front tires are in good shape

__________________
  • 03 tj 4in lift sye, 34x10.50 ltb's, rustys stinger
  • Other toys 08 raptor 700 duels, power commander and intake
Rickys03svt.cobra is offline   Quote Quick Reply
Old 07-26-2014, 10:54 PM   #3
Jeeper
 
tbensor's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2012
Posts: 1,156
What size tires are you running? Have you checked alignment and balance? Also you said you have worn out parts. You need to replace them. Both of those can and will cause Dw. If you continue to drive with Dw you will wear out your new parts. But to answer your question ball joints will cause Dw more than control arms unless they are completely worn out
__________________
My Toys
2003 RED Jeep Wrangler X - Can't stop adding stuff and updating.
2014 White Jeep Liberty Sport
2011 Carbon Black GMC Yukon Denali
2007 Black GMC Sierra 2500HD 4x4 Duramax/Allison
2007 Keystone Laredo 284BHS TT
tbensor is offline   Quote Quick Reply
Old 08-17-2014, 10:51 AM   #4
Jeeper
 
rraa497's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Posts: 33
*update*

I went back and did a dry steer test again and also felt each part as it was being done. Everything looks tight but I can hear a clunk and feel it close to the drag link end at the pitman arm. I checked torque and it's correct plus I just changed it a couple of weeks ago. Could the pitman arm be wobbled out or possibly my steering box going bad?
rraa497 is offline   Quote Quick Reply
Old 08-17-2014, 12:15 PM   #5
Jeeper
 
Dustdevil's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2014
Location: Orange County, Ca
Posts: 244
Based on what I have read here from the experts, DW is often a combination of worn parts that cumulatively create a front suspension and steering system that just doesn't have a solid foundation. I was lucky enough to have cured nearly all my DW issues with the track bar. But I still occasionally get a hint of it, which means there are still some worn parts.

I will soon replace the control arm bushings, even though I will eventually replace the arms with adjustable units when I install a small lift. I want to be sure the Jeep is mechanically sound before proceeding with any major mods or upgrades. I know my tie rod ends have some wear, since my LJ has 76k miles on it. But they don't seem to show any particular looseness or weakness. Nor do my ball joints. If your ball joints show any movement at all, I would plan to replace them first.

If I have learned one thing from this forum, it is that the jury is still out on whether any single part replacement will cure DW in any particular Jeep.
__________________
06 Jeep Wrangler Rubicon Unlimited
Just bought mid July 14. A few mods you can't see.
Dustdevil is offline   Quote Quick Reply
Old 08-17-2014, 12:42 PM   #6
Knows a couple things...

WF Supporting Member
 
Jerry Bransford's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: Escondido, Calif.
Posts: 33,203
Images: 2
The usual trigger (!!) for Death Wobble is an imperfectly balanced front tire. The imperfectly balanced front tire starts (triggers) the Death Wobble process and it will develop into full-blown DW if everything on the front-end isn't tight. If the front-end has a problem with something loose or worn, it doesn't take much of an imbalance on a front tire to cause DW.

And an imperfectly balanced tire can often be enough by itself to be the whole cause of DW. My TJ's entire front-end is TIGHT with brand-new ball joints, tight steering, nothing loose, good shocks, tight control arm joints (Johnny Joints), etc. yet I experienced some near full-blown DW several times on a trip up to the local mountains 3 weeks ago... all from an imperfect front tire balance. What pisses me off is that I took my TJ into the same Discount Tire shop that has been balancing my tires for years and the new store manager saw my bead lock wheels and ignorantly claimed they were illegal and said he wouldn't touch them. When I got pissed & had him look at my records to verify they had been doing them for years and informed him they were indeed legal in California, he agreed only to balance the rear tires since my front wheels now have 1/4" spacers due to the new dual-piston front brakes I just installed. So I was forced to drive up with only my rear tires balanced and thus for the first time in 15-16 years was on the verge of DW just due to an imperfectly balanced front tire. He suggested I go home and swap the balanced rear tires to the front and he'd balance the rears again before starting the trip but that was it. I didn't have time to do that so it was not a fun trip... I had to avoid driving at 50 mph which is where the front tires started shaking.
__________________
When you have a choice, buy American.

Jerry Bransford is offline   Quote Quick Reply
Old 08-18-2014, 11:12 AM   #7
Jeeper
 
NeitherFanboy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: Humble, Texas
Posts: 260
This is all great information. I had my front tires balanced, and then took my Jeep to a shop and handed them the list from this site of all the things that need to be checked. They replaced a front control arm, and the steering stabilizer, and that did NOT do it. I took it back, they kept it 3 days and returned it saying they found nothing wrong. I have been saving up, have to take it to someone better ... interesting, my DW occurs at exactly 50 mph, never lower and never higher.
NeitherFanboy is offline   Quote Quick Reply
Old 08-24-2014, 09:55 PM   #8
Jeeper
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Location: Riverbank
Posts: 56
happens to me between 45 and 50 mph. I don't know how to start with
__________________
Avocado has lots off road adventures
Sudcalifornio is offline   Quote Quick Reply
Old 08-24-2014, 10:41 PM   #9
Jeeper
 
tbensor's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2012
Posts: 1,156
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jerry Bransford View Post
The usual trigger (!!) for Death Wobble is an imperfectly balanced front tire. The imperfectly balanced front tire starts (triggers) the Death Wobble process and it will develop into full-blown DW if everything on the front-end isn't tight. If the front-end has a problem with something loose or worn, it doesn't take much of an imbalance on a front tire to cause DW. And an imperfectly balanced tire can often be enough by itself to be the whole cause of DW. My TJ's entire front-end is TIGHT with brand-new ball joints, tight steering, nothing loose, good shocks, tight control arm joints (Johnny Joints), etc. yet I experienced some near full-blown DW several times on a trip up to the local mountains 3 weeks ago... all from an imperfect front tire balance. What pisses me off is that I took my TJ into the same Discount Tire shop that has been balancing my tires for years and the new store manager saw my bead lock wheels and ignorantly claimed they were illegal and said he wouldn't touch them. When I got pissed & had him look at my records to verify they had been doing them for years and informed him they were indeed legal in California, he agreed only to balance the rear tires since my front wheels now have 1/4" spacers due to the new dual-piston front brakes I just installed. So I was forced to drive up with only my rear tires balanced and thus for the first time in 15-16 years was on the verge of DW just due to an imperfectly balanced front tire. He suggested I go home and swap the balanced rear tires to the front and he'd balance the rears again before starting the trip but that was it. I didn't have time to do that so it was not a fun trip... I had to avoid driving at 50 mph which is where the front tires started shaking.
good post. I rotated my tires an immediately experienced Dw. I did find worn parts but the balance on the tires set it off. I rotated back until I could find the culprit an Dw went away
__________________
My Toys
2003 RED Jeep Wrangler X - Can't stop adding stuff and updating.
2014 White Jeep Liberty Sport
2011 Carbon Black GMC Yukon Denali
2007 Black GMC Sierra 2500HD 4x4 Duramax/Allison
2007 Keystone Laredo 284BHS TT
tbensor is offline   Quote Quick Reply
Old 08-24-2014, 10:50 PM   #10
Jeeper
 
Join Date: Jun 2014
Posts: 16
I replaced the steering stabilizer and got new tires to get rid of mine - the tires were not worn, but they were 10 years old and cracking (i bought the jeep after it say for years). I don't think I needed the stabilizer but it didn't hurt. Drives like a dream now.
ddoumani is offline   Quote Quick Reply
Old 09-07-2014, 09:39 AM   #11
Jeeper
 
rraa497's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Posts: 33
I rotated my tires and have driven it about 150 miles and no wobble. I have a little bit of shaking but nothing like before. So I'm taking it to a local shop that works on Jeeps and off road vehicles to balance tires and check everything I have fixed to make sure it is right. I have had out of balanced tires before on other vehicles and it just caused the steering wheel to shake so I didn't think it would cause my DW. Shows that you learn something new everyday!
rraa497 is offline   Quote Quick Reply
Old 09-07-2014, 10:46 AM   #12
Knows a couple things...

WF Supporting Member
 
Jerry Bransford's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: Escondido, Calif.
Posts: 33,203
Images: 2
Quote:
Originally Posted by rraa497 View Post
I rotated my tires and have driven it about 150 miles and no wobble. I have a little bit of shaking but nothing like before. So I'm taking it to a local shop that works on Jeeps and off road vehicles to balance tires and check everything I have fixed to make sure it is right. I have had out of balanced tires before on other vehicles and it just caused the steering wheel to shake so I didn't think it would cause my DW. Shows that you learn something new everyday!
Trucks (Ford, Chevy, Dodge) and Jeeps with the older more traditional solid front axle design they share tend to develop DW where a car with a newer front axle design won't. I doubt cars can even get DW unless they have a really old solid front axle design.
__________________
When you have a choice, buy American.

Jerry Bransford is offline   Quote Quick Reply
Old 09-07-2014, 11:10 AM   #13
Jeeper

WF Supporting Member
 
jp2611's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: Fort Wayne IN
Posts: 6,765
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jerry Bransford View Post
Trucks (Ford, Chevy, Dodge) and Jeeps with the older more traditional solid front axle design they share tend to develop DW where a car with a newer front axle design won't. I doubt cars can even get DW unless they have a really old solid front axle design.
Quote:
Originally Posted by rraa497 View Post
I rotated my tires and have driven it about 150 miles and no wobble. I have a little bit of shaking but nothing like before. So I'm taking it to a local shop that works on Jeeps and off road vehicles to balance tires and check everything I have fixed to make sure it is right. I have had out of balanced tires before on other vehicles and it just caused the steering wheel to shake so I didn't think it would cause my DW. Shows that you learn something new everyday!
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jerry Bransford View Post
The usual trigger (!!) for Death Wobble is an imperfectly balanced front tire. The imperfectly balanced front tire starts (triggers) the Death Wobble process and it will develop into full-blown DW if everything on the front-end isn't tight. If the front-end has a problem with something loose or worn, it doesn't take much of an imbalance on a front tire to cause DW.

And an imperfectly balanced tire can often be enough by itself to be the whole cause of DW. My TJ's entire front-end is TIGHT with brand-new ball joints, tight steering, nothing loose, good shocks, tight control arm joints (Johnny Joints), etc. yet I experienced some near full-blown DW several times on a trip up to the local mountains 3 weeks ago... all from an imperfect front tire balance. What pisses me off is that I took my TJ into the same Discount Tire shop that has been balancing my tires for years and the new store manager saw my bead lock wheels and ignorantly claimed they were illegal and said he wouldn't touch them. When I got pissed & had him look at my records to verify they had been doing them for years and informed him they were indeed legal in California, he agreed only to balance the rear tires since my front wheels now have 1/4" spacers due to the new dual-piston front brakes I just installed. So I was forced to drive up with only my rear tires balanced and thus for the first time in 15-16 years was on the verge of DW just due to an imperfectly balanced front tire. He suggested I go home and swap the balanced rear tires to the front and he'd balance the rears again before starting the trip but that was it. I didn't have time to do that so it was not a fun trip... I had to avoid driving at 50 mph which is where the front tires started shaking.
I have been around here for a little while.....and I am amazed how many people over look the tires and wheels when it comes to DW...it is the ONLY thing in contact with the ground!!! Why would you not rule it out first?

Rant over...sorta.
I feel sorry for Jerry 'cause I know he takes care of his Rig...goes to show it can happen to any of us.....I wonder how many times "bad parts" have been replaced chasing DW when it was actually tires wheels that were at issue?

And some where along the line a part was changed tire rotated or rebalanced and that "fixed" the Jeep at the same time?

My "experience" is probably not the norm....have had DW 2 times in over 250K miles (that I can verify) and 5 Jeeps. Both times same Jeep within 500 miles of tire rotation/ balancing. With less than 70K on the clock. Culprit was one tire that had been patched/ repaired by the same shop for "road hazard". They replaced the tire and it went away. That particular Jeep in excess of 170K at this time....no major front end work has been done except lift and u-joints.

jp2611 is offline   Quote Quick Reply
Reply

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the Jeep Wrangler Forum forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.
User Name:
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.
Password:
Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.
Email Address:

Log-in

Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.



Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off




Download our Mobile App

» Network Links
»Jeep Parts
» Featured Product

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 08:58 PM.



Jeep®, Wrangler, Liberty, Wagoneer, Cherokee, and Grand Cherokee are copyrighted and trademarked to Chrysler Motors LLC.
Wranglerforum.com is not in any way associated with the Chrysler Motors LLC