What does it mean if your steering wheel is shaking?
Find Used Engines and Transmissions for a Great Price! Live Assistant For Used Engines Call 1800-518-9776
What’s more horrifying than a shaking steering wheel?
Well, only a zombie apocalypse can pass for it.
It's not a hidden fact that a shaking steering wheel can impact your driving experience immensely and put a lot of pressure on the driver due to bad vehicle handling.
However, what causes the same can become as complicated as an unresolved murder mystery for those who do not understand the intricacies of the same.
One of the prominent reasons for shaking steering is misaligned wheels. But that’s not it.
There are many other probable causes of the same and today we will be discussing them one by one in detail to help you deal with this situation.
But before we jump on to common causes of a shaking steering wheel, let’s go ahead and understand its composition along with the functioning of the same.
The anatomy of a steering system: components, functions & more
A maintained steering system will ensure a smooth and comfortable drive for you. It allows easy vehicle handling while on the road and also improves drivability.
Upon moving the steering wheel, the car moves and changes its direction. But the question remains: how does that happen after all?
Well, many internal components of a car, called the steering system, together ensure such movement. It allows the wheels of the vehicle to change directions with the help of the steering shaft. The job of the shaft is to assist the pinion gear.
The process moves ahead as the teeth of the pinion gear interlock with the steering rack to facilitate the rotation. Which further allows movement of the rods and knuckles and allows the tyres to move.
This should explain the rough turns which are dependent upon the degree to which you turn the steering wheel.
The entire purpose of the steering wheel is to ensure effortless and good control over the vehicle at every speed along with good traction.
Now that we’ve understood how all these components work together, let’s have a look at the probable causes of a shaking steering wheel.
5 common reasons your steering wheel is shaking Problematic axles
Axles might become a cause of shaking the steering wheel for those who drive FWD vehicles. This is because, in front-wheel drive cars, the axles also operate partially as shafts. When they wear out, they become unbalanced and cause the steering wheel to shake immensely.
Although, this can be caught early on and fixed. You don’t have to necessarily wait for the situation to get worse and more dangerous. One of the most common signs of a worn-out axle/shaft is a weird ticking noise which you will possibly encounter while turning your vehicle.
1. Misaligned & unbalanced wheels
There are two very important aspects of this which include:
- the equal distribution of weight among all four wheels of the vehicle and
- even treads of the tires.
Both of these things contribute equally to how you handle your vehicle.
Let’s discuss both of them individually.
- Unbalanced wheels
The thing about wheels is they need to create the perfect balance of weight. It should be equally distributed among all counterparts and also they all should be properly inflated as per the optimum tire pressure
In case the tires become deflated or where the weight is not properly distributed, the steering will start shaking and it will be the foremost sign that you will notice.
- Misaligned wheels
Misaligned wheels are different from unbalanced ones. Your tyres will lose their alignment due to regular use and wear and tear. It happens mostly because of the bad road conditions and driving habits of the people.
To understand if your wheels are misaligned or not you need to check the treads of your tires. If it’s uneven, the reason for the shaking that you are experiencing is probably the misalignment only.
2. Faulty bearings
Bearings and lack of lubrication can also cause the steering to shake excessively while driving due to excessive friction. One of the common signs that can help you notice if it's because of the bearings or not is consistent shaking during turns.
In case you figure out that the bearings are at fault here, you need to get them fixed immediately since, driving with worn-out bearings and a shaking steering can be extremely dangerous. Moreover, bad bearings can also cause further damage to other components of your car both internal and external. To begin with, it can significantly impact the health of your tires as it can considerably alter the tire’s wear pattern.
Similarly, it can also impact your car’s axles and increase the wheel heat due to excessive friction.
3. Bad suspension
If anything is wrong with the internal components of your car’s suspension, such as loose parts or a faulty drive shaft, it can cause the steering wheel to shake extensively and at the same time impact the drivability to a great extent.
Suspension problems are also serious since the entire job of it is to ensure a smooth and comfortable driving experience. With time it can get even worse and you might as well start feeling all the bumps on the road.
Getting the suspension system checked at the earliest is the recommendation here. You need to get it fixed and running properly before it ceases completely as it can invite uncalled-for expenses.
4. Worn out brakes
You need to notice the moment when your car steering shakes the most and take it as a sign there and then. If your car steering starts shaking extremely when you apply brakes while driving, the probable cause of such shaking is worn-out brakes. There might be something wrong with your brake pads which need professional attention. Or it could also point towards faulty rotors.
If this is the case, you will also experience a slight shake on the brake pedal. In both these scenarios, you must get them checked by a professional. This is to ensure that you do not encounter any problems while driving on the road as driving with bad brakes can get you into accidents.
5. Faulty brake callipers
Your steering wheel might also start shaking excessively when the brake callipers get stuck together. The entire purpose of the callipers is to hold the pads tightly which lowers the pads every time brakes are pressed. When they get stuck, the process is not facilitated and hence causes extreme issues while handling the steering altogether.
The callipers on the other hand can get stuck due to many reasons including excessive dirt & debris and bad hoses.
If you’ve been experiencing steering shaking issues for a long time now, there’s probably something wrong with one of the above-mentioned components of your car. The only way to deal with these issues is by getting them fixed and seeking the assistance of a professional.
Talking about professionals, might we mention Used Engines? With us, you can find the perfect used engines and transmissions without burning a hole in your pocket. Moreover, it will be thoroughly inspected too, which ensures quality and utmost customer satisfaction.
How to fix a shaking steering wheel?
In most cases where you find yourself worrying about the consistent vibrations of your steering wheel, you will need to seek expert help. However, if you still want to put in some effort, you can:
- Notice when the vibrations start happening the most and if they are consistent throughout the driving or not.
- See if the tires are the issue and get them changed in case the tread has worn out extremely. You can also get them inflated to match the optimum tyre pressure requirement and see if the situation gets better.
- In case you do all at your end and still face the same problems, drive to a reliable mechanic and get the issues resolved without waiting and delaying the same for too long.
Is it safe to drive with a shaking steering wheel?
We’ve discussed all sorts of possible causes which might be the reason for such vibrations here. The call here is of course yours, but we suggest you do not drive the car unless you are driving home or straight to a mechanic. It can be a minor issue too, but being on the safer side here is best.
It’s recommended you get it checked before you drive or within a reasonable time.
You May Also Like
Which BMW Has the Most Horsepower?
A car is useless if it doesn’t have good horsepower. Just imagine driving your car with sluggish acceleration and it drags on the road whenever you take it for a spin.Read Article
10 Best Engines Made So Far By Top Engine Manufacturers
Over the years, the car industry has seen major changes. Car engines have become smarter and it looks like every new engine that rolls out is better than the other.Read Article
How to Make Your Car Last Forever?
Isn’t it lovely when a new car works the way you want? The gears shift smoothly and the wheels roll without dragging against the road. But as your car gets older, you’ll notice that it doesn’t drive smoothly, has lower fuel mileage, and overheats easily.Read Article
See What Our
Customers Say About Us
Paul was great throughout the whole process. Equipment arrived on the promised date even though there was a Storm that could have altered the whole story. The Equipment was as described and worked perfectly. Definitely I will deal with Paul in future if I need something.
Johnson, New Jersey
After looking at all the used engine sites and then looking at the reviews given each company I decided on used Engines inc, most of them are brokers however Daniel wilson with this company was very up front and honest, my used engine started right up and is running strong so far ,they were excellent when it came to shipping tracking and daniel was always very helpful, I'd give him 5 stars on services and communications
I received my engine The service was spectacular from beginning to end Ricky and rose were so helpful if you're looking for engine ask for these 2 ask for these 2 they're gonna make your experience really pleasant, Hope this review helps someone is coming from someone that don't believe in order and online great experience.