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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
had my wheels balanced recently as I have a vibration in the steering wheel However this has not got rid of the vibration and was wondering if it was a drive shaft problem?
Any tips or advice would be really helpful
My car is a 2009 XF 3 litre diesel
 

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Lots of things can cause wheel wobble.
Wheel balance is a good place to start but have you had a 4 wheel geometry check done?
Whilst they're at it, they should check the joints around the upper and lower suspension arms as they can wear.
Are the wheels straight? Are the tyres straight? (I have 2, 4 year old Continental tyres on my Discovery that are out of shape and causing vibrations)
I assume it's not under braking?
Driveshaft would come more through the floor than the steering, being RWD, so I'd put that one further down the list.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Lots of things can cause wheel wobble.
Wheel balance is a good place to start but have you had a 4 wheel geometry check done?
Whilst they're at it, they should check the joints around the upper and lower suspension arms as they can wear.
Are the wheels straight? Are the tyres straight? (I have 2, 4 year old Continental tyres on my Discovery that are out of shape and causing vibrations)
I assume it's not under braking?
Driveshaft would come more through the floor than the steering, being RWD, so I'd put that one further down the list.
Thanks for your help I will get it looked at
 

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There are different brands of tyres on the front would that be the problem ?
It’s possible. Are they known brands or cheaper ones?
Different brands by themselves shouldn’t cause it as such, but it does imply shortcuts have been made. “bang something cheap on for the MOT” tyres can come with vibration issues due to lower quality control at manufacture. So they may not be as round or as balanced as some better brands.
Start with geometry and see what they advise.
 

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To me, everything that has been said makes sense. However, steering wheel vibration (when not braking) is usually wheel (im)balance associated, and I’d still be trying to eliminate that possibility as a first port of call.
You say having the wheels balanced has not got rid of the problem, but has it reduced or altered it at all? At what speeds is this vibration worse? Can you ‘drive through it’? Does braking influence it? As has been asked, are the tyres a marching pair on the front? Has it always been the same in your ownership, or has it suddenly developed?
Wheel alignment? This would be low down on my priorities, but a thorough wear check of all the suspension and steering components would be nearing the top, if a double check on balancing etc. doesn’t cure it. In my book, wheel alignment should only be carried out after an inspection to prove all associated components are serviceable. Yes, I know it should always be done, but usually the first job is to simply hang the wheel ‘gauges‘ on the wheels!
Hope some of this helps.
Kind regards,
Austin.
 

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Feeling it in the steering wheel usually means the vibration is on the front axle.
What you can do is swap the spare wheel on and test to see if the vibration disappears or not. Try it on both sides.
You can also swap wheels front to back and see what happens. You may be able to pinpoint it down to a wheel or say that it isn’t the wheels after this.
 

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Two things I would add to the very relevent pointers from the members above, is to see if both front wheels are running true and not distorted, as member jberks suggested. Jack the front up and turn the wheels to see, or get someone to stand in front of the car while you drive slowly toward them. Also check both tyres carefully to see if there is a bulge in them.
Second are the ball joints on the stub axle end of the steering rack arms. Even a slight out of balance (due to a loss of balance weight) or distorted wheel, caused by a pot hole, can give you steering wheel wobble if one or both ball joints have play in them.
I must say though that having two different makes of tyre on the front is never a good thing due to the difference the tread and hardness of the rubber compound can make, particularly when braking in slippery conditions.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
To me, everything that has been said makes sense. However, steering wheel vibration (when not braking) is usually wheel (im)balance associated, and I’d still be trying to eliminate that possibility as a first port of call.
You say having the wheels balanced has not got rid of the problem, but has it reduced or altered it at all? At what speeds is this vibration worse? Can you ‘drive through it’? Does braking influence it? As has been asked, are the tyres a marching pair on the front? Has it always been the same in your ownership, or has it suddenly developed?
Wheel alignment? This would be low down on my priorities, but a thorough wear check of all the suspension and steering components would be nearing the top, if a double check on balancing etc. doesn’t cure it. In my book, wheel alignment should only be carried out after an inspection to prove all associated components are serviceable. Yes, I know it should always be done, but usually the first job is to simply hang the wheel ‘gauges‘ on the wheels!
Hope some of this helps.
Kind regards,
Austin.
Thanks for your help Austin
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
To me, everything that has been said makes sense. However, steering wheel vibration (when not braking) is usually wheel (im)balance associated, and I’d still be trying to eliminate that possibility as a first port of call.
You say having the wheels balanced has not got rid of the problem, but has it reduced or altered it at all? At what speeds is this vibration worse? Can you ‘drive through it’? Does braking influence it? As has been asked, are the tyres a marching pair on the front? Has it always been the same in your ownership, or has it suddenly developed?
Wheel alignment? This would be low down on my priorities, but a thorough wear check of all the suspension and steering components would be nearing the top, if a double check on balancing etc. doesn’t cure it. In my book, wheel alignment should only be carried out after an inspection to prove all associated components are serviceable. Yes, I know it should always be done, but usually the first job is to simply hang the wheel ‘gauges‘ on the wheels!
Hope some of this helps.
Kind regards,
Austin.
Thanks for your help - it was MOTd in August this year just before I bought it so am assuming rightly the suspension components are sound
Right mix of tyres all round but there is a Pirelli Zero on offside front and cheap brand on nearside front- been advised by tyre centre to put another Pirelli Zero to match etc hope this does the trick ?
 

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It can also be the ABS system if one of the wheels has a different circumference then the computer would try to slow the faster moving wheel with the brake.
This can cause vibration in the steering wheel.
 

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It can also be the ABS system if one of the wheels has a different circumference then the computer would try to slow the faster moving wheel with the brake.
This can cause vibration in the steering wheel.
Interesting. Are you confident the system wouldn’t just error instead of braking?
 

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It is just very slight as the system just tries to balance the difference.

Although on the rear wheels it can damage the diff.
This was told to me by a master mechanic who I know when I had one tyre damaged.
He told me to make sure that there was not a large difference in the tread and that I should use the same manufacturer to ensure the diameter is the same.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
It is just very slight as the system just tries to balance the difference.

Although on the rear wheels it can damage the diff.
This was told to me by a master mechanic who I know when I had one tyre damaged.
He told me to make sure that there was not a large difference in the tread and that I should use the same manufacturer to ensure the diameter is the same.
Thanks for your help - changed the odd tyre on the front so they are both Pirelli Zero hope it works when I take it on a run next
 

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He told me to make sure that there was not a large difference in the tread and that I should use the same manufacturer to ensure the diameter is the same.
Some BMWs are known for this when running certain tyre sizes. Some tyres can wear too small for the systems tolerances. Rare though.
 

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I've had terrible issues with steering wheel wobble, new tyres that were balanced made a huge difference, but I still get occasional wobble that appears to be weather and road surface dependant.
I run Pirelli P zero's. I think they flat spot if left and are really sensitive to road surface.
I was told at the tyre centre that my wheels weren't buckled when the new tyres were fitted.
My MOT is due soon, so I'll see if there are any suspension issues found.
 

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I've had terrible issues with steering wheel wobble, new tyres that were balanced made a huge difference, but I still get occasional wobble that appears to be weather and road surface dependant.
I run Pirelli P zero's. I think they flat spot if left and are really sensitive to road surface.
I was told at the tyre centre that my wheels weren't buckled when the new tyres were fitted.
My MOT is due soon, so I'll see if there are any suspension issues found.
You may be right on the tyres flat spotting.
Our Discovery Sport is only 3 years old and had factory continental tyres all round. Given I run a 10 year old Jag that runs smooth, and ran mid range tyres on my Merc without issue, I believe at it's age and mileage, with premium tyres, it should still run 'as new'. It has 24k on the clock but did 17k of that in the first year. Since then it spent 6 months sat at the dealer and quite a lot of time parked up in our garage.
We had a vibration that was almost impossible to track down. Sometimes at 70 it was just an irritating vibration, other-times it was taking your fillings out. different speeds, road surfaces etc, sometimes just annoying, sometimes unbearable. Had geometry and balance done and it became much worse, but still almost impossible to pin down. I drove to my destination at 65 because to go any faster was unbearable, came back at 80 with very little discomfort. The front tyres were down to 3mm or so, so with winter approaching I decided to swap them out a tad early, put new Pirellis on the back and rotated the rears to the front to see what would happen. It's vastly better now. Not perfect yet but I have strong suspicions that if I bin the remaining contis, that will be the end of it.
 
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