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2003 Ford Explorer vibration/noise from front end tires?


Dave80
03-02-2009, 11:33 AM
I have had a vibrating noise in the front end of my 03 Explorer for about three months now. I recently brought it to the shop to have the left front wheel bearing replaced assuming the vibration was associated from the failing bearing. There is still a vibration noise coming from the front end:banghead:, I think it may be tire noise but have never had this in the past. There are 90,000 miles on my explorer any ideas where the vibration/noise is coming from. I would prefer to get some trouble shooting tips from here in an effort to keep the mechanics bills down. Could the front end need re-alignment?

Dave

Airjer_
03-02-2009, 12:08 PM
If you think it might be tire noise than rotate the tires and see if it goes away or changes. You can run your hand over the tread if you can feel "cupping" than you can probably hear it.

shorod
03-02-2009, 02:07 PM
Does the noise change with vehicle speed or engine speed? Is there a particular speed bank where it is most pronounced? Is there a vibration in the steering wheel that seems to correlate to the noise? Does it go away or change during braking? How about during turns? Rotating the tires front to rear is a good suggestion.

-Rod

cntrchfrk
03-31-2009, 11:26 PM
Rod- Same problem on my 96.

Shaking/vibration started around 60mph. 2 days later it was started at 35MPH. that continued for a week, and now it seems like its a little less at higher speeds. When decelerating from 55 to 30, vibration is very strong.

i dont think its the tranny because i can still head and feel the shifting at correct speeds, and it sound normal.

wheel alignment maybe?

At its worst, the steering wheel actually vibrates at least a half-inch movement.

shorod
04-01-2009, 07:01 AM
The first thing I'd check is to make sure all the lugnuts are tight. Also, if you've been off-road in mud recently, see if you have a bunch of caked mud in the wheels. If neither of those appear to be an issue, then you might try moving the front tires to the rear and the rears to the front. If that makes a significant difference in the vibration of the steering wheel, then you probably have a wheel balance issue, a tire with a separated belt, or a bent wheel. This likely would not cause the vibration on braking though.

Also, after a drive where you experience this vibration, stop the vehicle and feel the wheels to see if one or more is quite hot. Since you get a strong vibration when braking it sounds like you might have one or more warped brake rotors. If you also have a caliper that is not sliding freely or a brake hose that has collapsed, the brake may be staying applied causing your vibration when cruising that gets worse as you brake. Also, because they brake pads would be continually rubbing on the rotor and generating heat, it will make the warping worse over time.

Wheel alignment by itself will not cause a vibration. It could cause the vehicle to pull to one side or another, or may accelerate tire wear, but not a vibration. What a wheel alignment would find is a loose suspension component that could cause a vibration, but I really don't think that's what you're fighting here. I really think you'll find either a lugnut or brake issue. Your 1996 is at the age where a collapsed brake hose would not be out of the ordinary, especially if the fluid has not been maintained regularly.

-Rod

Dave80
07-02-2009, 12:35 PM
I have had a vibrating noise in the front end of my 03 Explorer for about three months now. I recently brought it to the shop to have the left front wheel bearing replaced assuming the vibration was associated from the failing bearing. There is still a vibration noise coming from the front end:banghead:, I think it may be tire noise but have never had this in the past. There are 90,000 miles on my explorer any ideas where the vibration/noise is coming from. I would prefer to get some trouble shooting tips from here in an effort to keep the mechanics bills down. Could the front end need re-alignment?

Dave
So I recently had my explorer in the shop and resolved this issue. Turns out it was a right rear wheel bearing:confused:. Cost me 375$ to fix no longer have the vibration.:bananasmi

heerdez
08-15-2009, 06:07 AM
So I recently had my explorer in the shop and resolved this issue. Turns out it was a right rear wheel bearing:confused:. Cost me 375$ to fix no longer have the vibration.:bananasmiwow 375.00 when that bearing is in the lower 69.00 for replacement means hes charge you 300 for the labor wow i think this is very high labor cost

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