Front End Vibration at High Speed - Toyota Nation Forum : Toyota Car and Truck Forums
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#1 Old 10-29-2009, 12:56 AM
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Wink Front End Vibration at High Speed

I have a 97 T-100 2wd 3.4L V6. When I take it on an interstate and get up to 60-65 mph, I get a lot of vibration in steering wheel and my seat.

I would appreciate any suggestions on how to troubleshoot or begin rebuild process.

Odometer is 170K. The engine was a transplant so I estimate it's at 120K. No transmission problems. Last year took it to a guy who only works on Toyota. He got the engine running smooth and serviced the brakes. New calipers. They work great.

I got it about 4 years ago. It was never very smooth at 65 mph, but seems to have become increasingly worse every year. I can't imagine out of balance wheel causing this much vibration. I will double check, but let's assume wheel is OK.

I have some experience under the hood and with brakes, but little experience with steering and suspension. Any input appreciated.

Last edited by rwengr; 04-05-2010 at 03:38 PM. Reason: change icon
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#2 Old 10-29-2009, 01:07 AM
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There could be a whole host of causes from: tires or wheels being out of round, balancing issues, loose tie rods, incorrect torque on lugs, etc.
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#3 Old 10-29-2009, 01:08 AM
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I'd still say tires/rims...that's the only thing that's rotating...besides the driveshaft.

You could check things like the sway bar bushings and the end links. Did you have the wheel bearings checked and repacked?
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#4 Old 10-29-2009, 07:29 AM
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Like Bam said,
80% of the time this problem is at the tires/rims especially when it only occurs in the 55-70 MPH range.

03 4Runner V8 4x4 SR5
96 T-100 4x4 SR5 (traded)
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#5 Old 10-29-2009, 11:14 AM
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Thanks for suggestions

This gives me a place to start.

I will rotate tires or get 2 new tires and make sure wheels are balanced and I can inspect the bearings.

I had the wheel balance problem once before on another car. The store that mounted new tires, didn't balance them !

There's probably more than a single factor and it won't ride OK until they are all addressed.
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#6 Old 10-29-2009, 11:36 AM
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Just remember...lug centric!
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#7 Old 11-22-2009, 09:53 PM
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have the same problem with a 95 t-100 2wd with 200,000 miles. This has occurred with different tires and wheels and has been like this for years now. I just took it to the front end shop, it was looked over and nothing wrong could be found. tires seem to wear ok, it might just be something to live with.
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#8 Old 11-22-2009, 10:09 PM
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Should be able to fix with tires and balance. I have seen bad shock cause some vibrtion but is unusal.
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#9 Old 11-23-2009, 02:17 AM
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You could try some DynaBeads in yer tires and pull the weights off afterwards.

Also...check the rubber insulator (part number 45517-34010) on the bracket that holds the steering rack down. It might be worn and allowing any road vibrations to affect the feel/handling.

From www.partznet.com...
Item Number MSRP Core Price Price
4551734010 $26.81 $0.00 $19.84
Steering - Steering gear and linkage - Gear assy - Insulator
Insulator - 2wd 1993 - 1998
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#10 Old 11-23-2009, 03:57 AM
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i dont have a lot of time, just skimmed, most of hte people seem to hit on the basics but they all seem to have left one possibility out,
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#11 Old 12-07-2009, 11:01 AM
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T100 Front End Overhaul: Update

Thanks to everyone for input and I thought an update may be of interest. The patient is in my garage still under anesthesia.

Here's what I see: There's no obvious damage to wheel bearings, but I have to look at a new one and compare it. I don't have much front end experience. The calipers slid off the rotor with no difficulty. Tie rods came off OK and look OK. The one thing I have observed is that the upper ball joint on driver side has been leaking lubricant. There is a heavy deposit of wet grease on the spindle arm right below it. The other 3 joints are dry. With tie rods disconnected, this spindle on the drivers side is a lot easier to rotate than on the passenger side.

Plans are to replace upper and lower ball joint. Since I have it all apart, I am going to do the other wheel unless someone says if it don't look broke, don't fix it. I have never installed ball joints. I will let you know how the test ride turns out. See my other post about removing the ball joint.
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#12 Old 12-09-2009, 07:10 PM
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Too bad yer not closer...might have been able to drop by to help you out.

Just got my Dynabeads delivered today and installed them in my tires this afternoon. I put in 4 ounces per tire and didn't pull any weights off since I didn't have any weights on the outside at all.

Took me ferever to find an engraving tool (Lowe's, Home Depot, Target, Walmart didn't have it) and finally found one at Ace Hardware. Go figure.

After struggling with the first one...I finally got the process down to gitting them beads stuffed in the tire. The key is taking yer time and "streaming" them a little at a time. Don't try to fill the tube up and try to git it in there...it's gonna take you ferever if you even git any of them in. Trust me!

I'll be reporting back on how well the Dynabeads are doing. I have about 50,000 miles on my Yokohama AT-S tires...still got lots of tread left. It will be interesting on how much smoother they will turn out at speed.

1998 T-100 SR5 2WD auto, Roadmaster Active suspension, oil catch jar, AC mod, aero cap, lower aero package, 67% grill block
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#13 Old 04-05-2010, 03:06 PM
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Thread Closeout - Happy Ending

Well i finally got most of my leaks fixed so i took it for a test drive. I thought results were pretty good.

For the record replaced: front wheel bearings, tie rod ends, both ball joints, front shocks, and rear shocks.

First of all, the steering is much smoother and feels more concise. The shocks improve the ride, but it still rides like a truck. At 70 mph the heavy steady shaking is gone.

I didn't rotate tires properly so I'm feeling some of that. Can't wait to put new tires on it.

In your hand, you can really feel the difference between a new wheel bearing and one that has 175k.

Now, if I can get all my leaks fixed.
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#14 Old 04-05-2010, 05:10 PM
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Normally if you feel vibration in your hind end, that's where it is. Either the rear tires/wheels out of balance, our out of true. It could also be a driveshaft that was assembled wrong, or the balance is off. The front tires usually shake the steering wheel. Something that came to mind is a slipped belt in a tire. Balance won't affect it, but you can see the tread move to the side if you spin the tire.

There is my two cents worth
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#15 Old 07-21-2010, 10:44 PM
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Hey Rwenger (or anyone else that knows) can you please tell me how to remove and replace the front wheel bearings and both of the ball joints. I have the same problem with vibration at high speed, and I am desperate to get it fixed. If you have any pics on how it is done that would be great. Any help is greatly appreciated. Thanks.
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