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fire29 03-27-2012 11:04 AM

Jeep wanders
Just bought my first jeep on Sun. It is a 2001, when I am driving it kind of wanders, doesn't seem to track straight. Does any one have any idea where I should start looking?? It kind of sways back and forth a little.

Thanks, mike

Guin 03-27-2012 11:12 AM

I'm an amateur, but could the sway bar have something to do with it? I know I just had mine replaced after inspection (on my 2001) and the steering seems much tighter with less wobble.

clarkkent 03-27-2012 11:32 AM

tires balanced and toe in correct?

hcarr1234 03-27-2012 12:50 PM

Is it lifted and was the wind blowing?

phdsk8 03-27-2012 12:56 PM

On a nice day without wind drive it. The boxy jeeps sway in winds. Check the rod ends on steering. Grab em and see you can move them. What tire, lift etc combo? Also look at the steering and ask someone to move steering left to right. Any play in panhard bar near axle end could also be an issue. Gotta do this anyways since you bought a used vehicle.

Hammond_Egger 03-27-2012 07:42 PM

I just started noticing this myself on my 2001...but I only had 20K on it!
Suddenly, I got the "popping" sound going slow over small bumps, knew it was my front sway bar links...ball was loose.

Replaced them and it drives like new now.

Kevbz 03-27-2012 08:18 PM


Originally Posted by clarkkent (Post 2187713)
tires balanced and toe in correct?

i've heard toe out of alignment is the big culprit for wandering

fire29 03-27-2012 08:19 PM

No lift or big tires. (yet) Stock. But it has been windy. I'm a jeep virgin but plan on crawling under it this weekend. I will snoop around and have a buddy check it out with me. I will check out everything that has been brought up. Hopefully it will be an easy find. Thank you

Another Guy In A Jeep 03-27-2012 08:19 PM

Some tires, depending on the tread, like to follow cracks along the road.

Jerry Bransford 03-27-2012 08:21 PM

Wandering is usually caused by the front-end alignment being out of adjustment. Check and adjust your toe-in and it should be ok after that. Suspension lifts will screw up the toe-in setting so if your TJ has a suspension lift, odds are very good the toe-in is off.

Your caster angle could be off too but that requires aftermarket adjustable length control arms to have been installed for the caster angle to be off. The caster angle is also partly responsible for tracking and is also responsible for providing good return-to-center for your steering wheel after you complete a turn.

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