Treating different causes of vibrations

With any moving part in a machine, from rotors to steering wheels, there is always some level of vibration due to the movement and difficulty getting the balance perfect. As parts hit higher speeds the vibrations can worsen substantially and increase the wear on parts. In vehicles this is a big problem because it can lead to safety concerns and discomfort for the driver too.

Steering wheel vibrations are the most common kind that people will experience. These can be caused by many different things. If you notice the vibration more when you brake it is likely to be an issue with the brake discs or drums. Over time with use they can become warped and are no longer perfectly round, resulting in vibrations. To resolve the problem parts can be machined or replaced.

If your steering vibrates all the time it is typically caused by tyre or balance problems. When it happens at low speeds it is a clear indication there is a problem with the tyre. This could be because of a belt warping the shape or a change as a result of a collision. At higher speeds if you get vibrations it is due to the balance. Replacing tyres is a simple solution to the first problem. For the second you need to rotate wheels or have them professionally balanced.

Many people claim that loose suspension is responsible for vibrations but on its own it is very rare that it actually causes them. A loose part will exacerbate the situation but it is not the cause of the problem because it is not a rotating part. You can inspect the suspension to be sure but it shouldn’t be at the top of your list of potential causes.

Vehicles can experience vibrations when they are idling as well as moving. When you encounter this you should check the performance of the engine first before you look at anything else. If you still have the problem after you ensure the engine is running smoothly it is likely an issue with the mounts. Replacing them can be tricky but it is a solution.

Driveline vibrations are amongst the trickiest to diagnose. With an automatic transmission your first step should be to check the fluid levels and make sure there are no leaks. With manual transmission you need to check the operation and condition of the clutch. If you still experience vibrations with either type of vehicle it could be a problem with the CV joints. Unfortunately correcting this will usually require you replace the whole axle.

If you’re worried about vibrations in vehicles you may want to consider getting it checked by professionals. At Vibration Free we specialise in dynamic balancing and can offer a range of solutions to suit all kinds of vehicles. We have worked with countless motorsports teams and delivered bespoke services that help them maximise the safety and performance of their cars. Contact us to learn more about the dynamic balancing services we can offer to you.