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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi, I am having a problem with my steering. I can be going down the road and my steering wheel and truck will start to wobble back and forth. Sometimes bad. Not sure what's going on. The wheel bearings, pitman arm, and idler arm and bracket are a year or less old . no more then 10,000 miles on them. Put a steering stabilizer shock on and that didn't help. I have checked and checked the front end. Everything looks and feels tight. Need help figuring out. Tires are wearing well nothing odd about them.
 

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Hi, I am having a problem with my steering. I can be going down the road and my steering wheel and truck will start to wobble back and forth. Sometimes bad. Not sure what's going on. The wheel bearings, pitman arm, and idler arm and bracket are a year or less old . no more then 10,000 miles on them. Put a steering stabilizer shock on and that didn't help. I have checked and checked the front end. Everything looks and feels tight. Need help figuring out. Tires are wearing well nothing odd about them.
some call your problem the death wobble .. scary ...most times it is the tie rods worn ..
 

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I've had it be loose lug nuts, tire balance issues, bad U-joints in a front drive shaft, sway bar bushings and tie rod ends. Check every component-twice.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
OK so I think I found my problem. I just replaced all 4 tie rod ends. Every time I checked the front end everything was tight. That's why I couldn't figure it out. I don't n
Know if I had enough grease in them so they wouldn't move when checking them by hand. I checked them again yesterday and they showed up being very loose.
Thanks for all the input everyone.
 

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if your tie rods have grease boots I used plastic ty raps/straps to keep the seal tight.. the OEM boots had steel that rusted out securing these boots then the water causes these tie rods to fail.

also use lithium based grease..
 

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some call your problem the death wobble .. scary ...most times it is the tie rods worn ..
Hey Jcat, A few years back I considered trying to sneak in the front door after a few soda pops "The death wobble"

But seriously yes it's normally been the damm tie rods, easy fix tho.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
OK so I thought the bad tie rods were the problem. Put all new ones on. Still getting the death wobble. I have only gotten it once sence i changed them but i still got it. Thought it was gunna rip the wheel out of my hand when it started.
 

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I found this. If you have a buddy with a 2500 truck, try putting on the spare tire from your truck and one from another truck on the front end and give it a try. The link below fix for the same problem was tires. Your kind of problem is just that, a harmonic oscillation as stated above. The forward force and the side forces are equal and a slight force from another direction will easily push the steering around.
http://coloradok5.com/forums/showthread.php?t=271671

However worn out bushings will do the same. http://www.offroaddesign.com/catalog/D60kingpinspring-bushing.htm
Dana 60 Kingpin Spring and Bushing Kit
The kingpin Dana 60 (common to all GM axles and early Ford and Dodge axles) uses a tapered plastic bushing and preload spring to locate the top of the steering knuckle. As everything wears and we put big tires with lousy balance on the truck, it's common to develop what's known as "death wobble". You typically know it if you have it, at roughly 25 mph the front tires will start a violent oscillation that typically requires you to come to a complete stop before it will go away.
 

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OK so I thought the bad tie rods were the problem. Put all new ones on. Still getting the death wobble. I have only gotten it once sence i changed them but i still got it. Thought it was gunna rip the wheel out of my hand when it started.

so I am having a hard time understanding you with this. why did you replace the tie rods . you know what your doing or are you instructing others to do this work ? worn tie rods are not that hard to see/feel ... the inner or outer joints get rusted and then they get sloppy..

then you have idler arms and ball joints... these require a steel bar or pipe and pry on the wheel to see that these are not worn..

so are you doing this work or some other person ???
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Worth Florida do you think if I just put my rear tires on would work? Thank you for the site. It does make sense. I would hate to have to get new tires.
 

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RAV, go to you tube and search "death wobble". There are hundreds of videos with many solutions. Seems to be more common on Jeeps. Short wheel base, a light vehicle and all are DANA 4WD
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
J cat I am doing all the work. All new tie rod ends. They were bad. Checked the rest of the front end it seemed all tight to me. I had it checked because I was second guessing my self. All it good.
 

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Worth Florida do you think if I just put my rear tires on would work? Thank you for the site. It does make sense. I would hate to have to get new tires.
You can try it but I think in your case it won't help unless one tire up front has a broken belt, a flat spot or a bulge. You didn't mention milage but a 02 GMC other parts are worn out as shown on that "www.offroaddesign.com" web site. I assume the front end was aligned after all of the parts were changed out.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
I have 189,000 miles on it. I have replaced just about everything in the front. The ball joint idler arm and bracket pitman arm sway bar ends and sway bar bushing all have less then 10,000 miles on them and they all are tight. And the tie rod ends are band new. Oh and the wheel bearing haven been done with the other parts. Everything except the tie rods where replaced together.
 

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I have 189,000 miles on it. I have replaced just about everything in the front. The ball joint idler arm and bracket pitman arm sway bar ends and sway bar bushing all have less then 10,000 miles on them and they all are tight. And the tie rod ends are band new. Oh and the wheel bearing haven been done with the other parts. Everything except the tie rods where replaced together.
It is possible the steering box is worn , too much play ..this can be seen , hold / tie steering wheel down. see if the wheels can turn too much..both front wheels OFF the ground..

worn boxes are common failures with high mileage trucks like we have..
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
I can try that jcat. I have turned the set screw a while back to tighten up the steering on the box. It is very possible that is the problem.
I was thinking that in the back of my head but a couple people told me it wouldnt act like that. So then i didnt mess with it. But I will try that as soon as the nor easter get out of my town. Thanks again for all the help from everyone.
 

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As I suggested in post #2, tire balance will cause this problem.

Either take them to a tire shop for balance check, or try a different set up front (of course, if the 2nd set is out of balance, the problem will still show up).
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
OK, so any chances my wobble was a CV shaft, because one of them let go on me today. It started grinding and making funny noises and the steering started wobbling. Think maybe the shaft was binding once and a while and making it so the shaft didn't want to rotate? Just a thought. I haven't been able to. Take it for a ride any distance yet but the steering felt better. What do you guys think
 

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Hi, I am having a problem with my steering. I can be going down the road and my steering wheel and truck will start to wobble back and forth. Sometimes bad. Not sure what's going on. The wheel bearings, pitman arm, and idler arm and bracket are a year or less old . no more then 10,000 miles on them. Put a steering stabilizer shock on and that didn't help. I have checked and checked the front end. Everything looks and feels tight. Need help figuring out. Tires are wearing well nothing odd about them.
I just had the same issue. I registered to let everyone know what caused mine since I didn't see the solution as an option.

Problem:

Truck would wobble going around 40-60. (Front end wobble/vibration). It also felt like it would try to pull itself left or right. Bad enough in some places it felt unsafe to drive. It would go away sometimes depending on how level or straight the road was. Going toward slight right on a highway it would go away. Or if you turned the wheel just a little in the other direction it would go away.

Anyway, got the truck lifted and all the tires off to rotate and one of the control arm bolts was loose but visually couldn't tell until lifted the truck and could see just a little play when moving the tire from the 9 o clock and 3 position side to side. Looking at it there's no way to tell. It's fairly new. Tightened that and now it has no wobble. Visually speaking it would be easy to blame my tierods. But actually they were tightt. Although I do need to replace them soon, that was not the issue.
 
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