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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have a subtle vibration at 35 mph to 45 mph. Thought it was tire balance until I jacked up the car and gripped the sides of my tires to check the play in the front end. I can move the tire from side to side a little, and I notice the struts move a little with the tire, but I am not sure if this is normal play or not.
Anyone have any experience here?
Thanks
P
 

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when you say a little, how far would you esitmate that it moves?
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
If I really grip and lean into it I can wobble the tire, rotor, shock assembly. You can see the movement but it is small. At the outer edge of the tire it is moving 1/4 to 3/8 inch. It does not make any noises when it moves.
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tie rods ('inner'), tie rod ends ('outer'), and both lower balljoints are zero tolerance limits. that means *any* visible movement is out of spec.

any movement at the top of the strut would lead me to suspect either a loose mount, or one that is worn out. any noises over bumps??


df
 

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I went and checked mine after reading this as my car tracks horrid- Everyone just keeps telling me its due to the big wheels but I wasnt convinced (yes I know bigger wheels will make it track abit but my handling is awful!!) My cars does exactly the same- moves quite abit on both wheels but no noise- so we thinking tie rod ends and if so inner or outer? Is there an easy of way of telling which are shot?? I also tightened up the top mount bolts and they did move quite easily but havent checked if the strut still moves abit...I had some bushes changed a year or so again at the front but cant remember what they were for- will have to check my paperwork!!
 

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My Bimmer does exactly the same thing. I was told by a mechanic that I need to replace my front wheel bearings. I just put new rotors on so it's not that. Worth looking in to, the bearings I mean. I also notice the car likes to follow groves in the road. I can feel the steering wheel being pulled by bumps in the road as well.

Good luck.
 

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I went and checked mine after reading this as my car tracks horrid- Everyone just keeps telling me its due to the big wheels but I wasnt convinced (yes I know bigger wheels will make it track abit but my handling is awful!!) My cars does exactly the same- moves quite abit on both wheels but no noise- so we thinking tie rod ends and if so inner or outer? Is there an easy of way of telling which are shot?? I also tightened up the top mount bolts and they did move quite easily but havent checked if the strut still moves abit...I had some bushes changed a year or so again at the front but cant remember what they were for- will have to check my paperwork!!
If you tighetend the top bolts(im guessing the outer tie rod ball joint nut), you might as well buy new outers, and if you have a few extra bucks just go inner and outer, you can buy them as a complete set so you dont have to go heating up the inner and outer just to get the outer off. Heating suspension is the worst thing ever. and pulling just the outers is a pain in the ass. Last time i replaced mine i did just outer, and the stud broke with me hangin on the pipe wrench tryin to get the sucker to move. i was tryin to do everything i could before heating it up.

The play that would have been in the ball joint while the nut was loose is prolly enough to put unecessary wear on the ball joint or shaft of the stud. And you def dont want one of these breakin on you goin down the road.

To the OP, get new tie rods outers and/or inners, 1/4 -3/8 is way too much travel. If it moves a hair, i would call it good but keep a eye on it, and i mean a tiny tiny hair.

ive seen too many cars on the side of the road with the wheel folded backwards cause the tie rod went out. And it never looks pretty, minus the fact youll have to buy a new tire and god knows what else you damaged.

Good luck to both of yas!:thumbup:
 

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My Bimmer does exactly the same thing. I was told by a mechanic that I need to replace my front wheel bearings. I just put new rotors on so it's not that. Worth looking in to, the bearings I mean. I also notice the car likes to follow groves in the road. I can feel the steering wheel being pulled by bumps in the road as well.

Good luck.
wheel bearings can give you some wheel play, but generally i checked these at the 12 & 6, or 2 & 7 positions on the wheel to eliminate the possibility of a steering part, or other suspension component.

they can be loose and not give any noise, but usually they make noise when they go bad. if they are loose, you could probably expect to hear some noises soon, if not already. take a listen. the pitch should be related to vehicle speed, and may diminish with side to side swerves.

i just did my lower control arms, and had i thought about it, i would have done a diy vid on checking the ball joints. oh well.

df
 

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experience has taught me to check multiple positions of the wheel to check for multiple steering and suspension faults. it's just a system that i used as a technician to make certain the the vehicles i worked on were thoroughly inspected.

sometimes you feel a looseness, but cannot locate it. in this case, i suggest having someone else wiggle while you inspect.

also keep in mind that there may be more than 1 loose component.


df
 

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generally, if your wheel bearing is completely shot and holdin on by a inch of its life, when you jack the car up, the wheel will fall inwards from the bottom side, kinda like \ . at least thats what mine did when i went to get new tires put on.
 

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well, its not a good thing to drive on a bad bearing... itll FUBAR all kinds of things.
 

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Thanks, guys you rock!

All I can say, F$%K!

Back to the shop, geez

I can hear one of the front bearings roaring. This seems like like a fix it before it it fries, lest I end up sideways on an LA freeway.

I've also got a code 246, Air Engine System Intake or soemthing. I ordered the Bently manual so I can talk the talk.

I love my 328is but I'm close to the 150K club.

Thanks!
 

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I need a good mechanic!!!!
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
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I got in there with a large screwdriver and pried on all the usual suspects. Turns out the control arm bushings were trashed. $20 and 3 hours and the shimmy is gone. FYI, the bushings from Pelican come as a set I ordered 2 and got 2 boxes of 2. (Anyone need a set? $20 plus $5 shipping.)

While I was at it I replaced bad bulb in OBC display, missing glove box latch, microfilter, and hood shocks. The car has 98K miles so its time for some stuff. While replacing the microfilter I found I have a keyless entry and alarm. I didn't get a keyless FOB with the car so I guess I will never know if it works.

Very impressed with the way BMW designed the cars to be maintained. Makes it fun to work on them.

P
 
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