Jeep Wrangler Forum

Jeep Wrangler Forum (
-   JK General Discussion Forum (
-   -   Death wobble (

donald 09-25-2007 07:58 PM

Death wobble
OK this is not my Jeep but a close friends.

We installed a 3 inch fabtech budget lift and put on new rims with 35s.
We were coming back from a road trip and he hit the brakes and the thing went into a death wobble then we continued on, then with out hitting the brakes it went into a death wobble again. So I noticed the trac bar bolt was loose so we tightend it up along with every other bolt just to make sure nothing else was loose. We continued on are way problem fix well we thought. 2 days have gone by and we were headed to the woods tonight hit the brakes and there was the death wobble all over again. All bolts are tight so now we are puzzled. The only thing we can come up with is after we installed the lift he went down and got an alignment with the factory rims and tires because the rims and tire were not in yet, so maybe that could be are problem any ideas?

Jase 09-25-2007 09:00 PM

From what I have read, he should get some adjustable front track bars (which Fabtech does not offer) and should probably remove his relocation brackets having the track bar axle mount welded on with a gusset. Relo brackets on an axle act like a lever pushing and pulling. It is possible for the track bar to break off entirely.

Also, make sure the 35s are balanced correctly and are properly inflated.

nicolas-eric 09-25-2007 09:03 PM

32 Attachment(s)
there was a thread some weeks ago where somebody posted how to fix this problem.
i think it was the adj. trackbar that fixed it.

mud707 09-26-2007 07:58 AM

Are you sure it is dw or is it the new Electronic stability program and stuff they have on the new jeeps. DW usually happens when going certain speeds i.e. 40-55 or so. It don't happen usually when hitting the brakes. On the JK I heard you have to be really careful when you lift it or it throws off the sensors that control the ESP program and can really screw with you.

donald 09-26-2007 02:08 PM

You know what the first time it happened it was when he hit the breaks then it happened when he was drive about 60 mph then again when we were going about 10 mph so the ESP sounds about right. Is there a way to dissconnect that thing?

snow walker 09-26-2007 02:23 PM

ESP death wobble
there is a button that turns off the ESP, at least there is on the '07s

mud707 09-27-2007 09:13 AM

I found this from a previous post hope it helps. If you have more questions Joe from absolute offroad will be able to help probably he has been the goto guy on here for lift question.

Procedure for diabling the ESP system
1.Shift the transfer case to 4H range
2.Turn the steering wheel until centered and wheels strait
3.Cycle the ignition key from off to on
4.Wait five seconds while the system does its bulb check
5.Turn and hold the steering wheel one half turn to the and hold the ESP off button for seven seconds
6. turn the steering wheel back to center then turn it one half turn to the left....hold the ESP off button for seven seconds
7. Turn the steering wheel back to and hold the ESP off button fro seven seconds
8.Turn the ign key to off

If youve jumped thru these hoops correctly the ESP off light will display for 10-12 seconds each time you cycle the key on.......

The ESP is disabled as is the Electronic Roll Mitigation system.......this is the procedure we have been given for diabling the system for 08 model year.....Im frankly not sure if it works on the 07 models

If ya want it back do the same procedure

missjeep 09-22-2010 10:23 PM

Jeep Owners need to call Chrysler and report and demand a recall on the Death wobble . Chrysler is sitting back and letting their own consumers have accidents and spend money on diagnose and repair of a manufacture issue. Please call 1-800-992-1997 and report your incident and please callNHTSA and report your incident 1-800-327-4236 Lets save lives and have Chrysler Recall Death Wobble cars and or pay back consumers they took advantage of knowing the Death Wobble exists and letting people drive around with it. Thankyou...Missjeep

Heli_AV8R 12-07-2010 09:34 AM

LONG POST! (sorry)...:rolleyes:

Disclaimer: This post contains my opinions on the matters of ESP and DEATH WOBBLE, and is based on my first hand experience with both. Other opinions and experiences may most likely vary.

How did this thread so quickly change from death wobble to ESP??? Very briefly on that... The service guy at my dealer gave me a copy of a similar if not the same procedure, and it was very finicky, but after several attempts it finally worked but for only a short time. once you start driving over 40 Mph or so it kicks right back on. I found a very effective method is to just disconnect one of the sensors from behind the front wheel, and it will fail the ESP turning it off. you may have a dash light, but after shutting down the veh. and restarting when the computer runs its diagnostic, it will sense the disconnected ESP and will fail it automatically, and after a few minutes the warning light shoult go out. - However I run a 07 JK on a 4" lift with 37s, and when I had the same problem, I found out its better to address what is triggering the ESP rather than turning it off entirely. It is perfectly safe to keep it on when lifted you just have to make sure your track bars are adjusted properly and the axels are perfectly centered. Proper caster will also help with inadvertantly triggering the system. Also check that sway bars are tight and bushings are healthy. this should resolve the ESP coming on when its is not needed, while leaving it available for when it is needed. (just a note: if you have a lift and do not have adjustable track bars, but a relocation or drop bracket is used to keep the stock one, the brackets can flex or develop play more easily than the original mounts, and really should not be used long term. Get adjustables.)

As for the topic at hand, I have spent the last few months trying like hell to get rid of my death wobble situation, and the last two days reading this and other threads and threads on other forums as well, and I have come to the following conclusions:

Death wobble can be caused by any number of things, and consequently is usually mitigated or stopped by several methods. There is no one sure-fire or "permanant" cure for DW, as the suspension system is a very dynamic system with alot of moving parts, that all have relationships with other moving parts. It is engineered to be both rigid and flexable at the same time; some parts are designed to stop movement, and some are designed to allow movement. What works to solve one Jeeps problem, will not work for everyones Jeep, as the causes may be different between many vehicles. One guy may lift his Jeep like crazy and go nuts on tire size, and never see DW in his rig, while another guy with a stocker craps his pants when it bites him. The things to take away from this are:
-You need to frequently and thoroughly check your suspension systems for proper adjustments and tolerances. ESPECIALLY if you even slightly modify your system configuration (e.g. everything from tire/wheel changes and rotations, to lift kits with adjustable parts) and even more especially if you drive off-road rarely or frequently, mild to rough terrain. These checks should include: Wheel and tire pressures and balance, alignment with special attention paid to camber and toe-in, as these can become out of spec with tire size increases/decreases, changes in ride height, and through the constant articulation of the system. You should also check that trackbars, control arms, sway bars, ball joints, steering dampers, etc. are all very tightly mounted with no unintended play. Every once in a while remove these items one attachment point at a time, and check the bolt holes for any wear that may allow lateral movement of the bolt in the hole, and while disconnected check all bushings for wear, and re-attach making sure to re-torque to spec. While the Steering damper (a.k.a. stabilizer) is disconnected, if pneumatic, check to make sure it has no damage, leaks or play. you should not be able to move the piston rod in and out without constant tension. If it moves at all before you feel the tension (especially when changing direction of force from pushing to pulling or vice-versa) it needs to be replaced, (this small anount of play may very well could be your cause and solution). You should check for play in the steering box as well.
-If you change tire size, your Caster, Alignment and toe-in WILL all be changed, and MUST be re-adjusted accordingly. you cannot go from 33"s to 35"s or from 35"s to 37"s by simply mounting the new size, happy that it fits and go about your merry way. Even incremental changes to caster and toe-in (as would occur with tire size changes) can result in an open armed welcome to DW. Re-Align and adjust caster.

Finally, go through the whole system, Dont just replace your steering damper, or rotate your tires and ignore everything else just because that one change you made happened to stop it. There may be one cause, or many, and checking everything is the only way to find out if there are more issues lurking behind the obvious. Almost all solutions are temporary, and some last longer than others, so frequently checking even when things seem okay still seems to be the best, most pro-active way to avoid re-occurance.
Jeep suspensions, Especially the JK seem to be prone to DW, and wear, loose bolts, misalignment, bumps and bruises of components, and configuration changes no matter how seemingly insignificant, can all make it show up.
Best thing I figure is work your way back and start with whatever you changed before DW happened, and adjust or undo that change, and work your way from there. I would also highly recommend that you go through all the checks after every occurance of DW if possible before driving it again, as all that wobbling, shaking, and jarring is very likely tweaking or damaging something.

BlackMountain 12-07-2010 09:37 AM

what the hell is death wobble?

popstop785 12-07-2010 11:25 AM


Originally Posted by BlackMountain
what the hell is death wobble?

If that is not sarcasm. Search it on google and you'll get a lot of info and videos.

MTH 12-07-2010 12:12 PM


Originally Posted by BlackMountain (Post 912030)
what the hell is death wobble?

I'm thinking this isn't sarcasm. Try this thread, (, which provides some really good off-forum links and videos.

BlackMountain 12-07-2010 12:28 PM

i searched it and it sounds scary. i've driven wranglers for 8 years now and never had that happen, but have never done any major mods either

popstop785 12-07-2010 12:40 PM

I've owned 3 Jeeps in my life and I have never had the issue either. Same as you I have never done anything other than adding larger tires. I don't have the skill to do anything with my Jeep that it cannot already handle so why bother beefing her up, ya know?

yomondo 12-07-2010 01:38 PM

It typically happens after swapping out your front trackbar. Once the factory bolt on the front trackbar axle mount has been removed and replaced, it's notorious for constantly loosening up, especially from offroading. Keep an eye on that bolt to prevent the hole from wallowing out.

myjeepandmydog 12-07-2010 01:48 PM

Does this problem happen with any size lift? Or is it prone to happen on bigger lifts? Was thinking about Oem 2" lift for my JK, but maybe not now.

yomondo 12-07-2010 03:14 PM


Originally Posted by myjeepandmydog (Post 912342)
Does this problem happen with any size lift? Or is it prone to happen on bigger lifts? Was thinking about Oem 2" lift for my JK, but maybe not now.

From what I've seen and heard, it's mostly related to that bolt I spoke of above. I guess it might be more prone to happen with bigger lifts only because on smaller lifts you may not need to replace your front trackbar. Once you replace your front trackbar and remove that factory bolt, it tends to keep on loosening up.

USAntigoon 12-08-2010 07:44 AM


Originally Posted by BlackMountain (Post 912030)
what the hell is death wobble?

This video clip will help you.......

marshrat 12-08-2010 10:23 PM

I have a 2 door 2007 Wrangler X with stock 255 75R 17 Wranglers on it, no modifications. I bought it last summer and had a few instances of death wobble so bad it scared the heck out of me. Brought it in to the dealer and they put a heavy duty stabilizer on the front end. Seemed to take care of it but every time I hit a bump it seems like it wants to jump and vibrate a bit. Death wobble is not fun, especially on a snow Colorado 2 lane road!

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 06:12 PM.

User Alert System provided by Advanced User Tagging v3.1.0 (Pro) - vBulletin Mods & Addons Copyright © 2017 DragonByte Technologies Ltd.
vBulletin Security provided by vBSecurity v2.2.2 (Pro) - vBulletin Mods & Addons Copyright © 2017 DragonByte Technologies Ltd.