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'02 Sportage 2 door.
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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
UPDATE 6/21/12 Front wheel bearing cause whole vehicle to shake?

After replacing the front wheel bearings & axle shaft support bearing in the steering knuckle I still had the same problem.

Last night I put it up on jack stands and took all the tires off to see if the vibrations was still there. I tried it n 2wd first and had just a slight vibration but nothing like I had been experiencing. I then locked the hubs; put it in 4 hi and man did she shake. I noticed that the passenger side axle shaft was pitted where the needle bearing rides when I replaced the bearings. I didn't think it was bad enough to cause a problem but I'm 99.9% sure this is my vibration/shaking problem.


This a little long so bear with me.

In have a vibration/shake that started a coupe of days ago. It does this between 25-35 miles per hour. The whole vehicle shakes & I feel like I have vibrating seats. I noticed when I did my brakes last weekend that the inner left front tire had wear like either the alignment is out or a ball joint is going bad.

I decided to rotate the tires to see if it made a difference but was still there but felt like it moved from the front to the rear. I do notice the steering wheel shaking as well when the vibration/shaking starts. It did this before & after I rotated the tires.

I bought the tires in Nov 2010 from Firestone and had a lifetime balance so I took my Sportage to Firestone after work to have them balance the tires. They come back and tell me I have a bad front left wheel bearing and it is causing the vibration.

For starters they never balanced the tires as I watched them the whole time nor did they even test drive it. They go on to tell me that when they (not in my lifetime are "they" going to work on my Sportage) replace the bearings it will need to be aligned. Never heard of this before. On top of all this the mechanic noted that the transmission (5 speed) is showing signs of excessive play and no parts are currently available to repair it. What a crock about the "excessive play"

So my question is do you think it's possible that the front wheel bearings are bad? I have 157k miles on my Sportage & I am the third owner. And does it need an alignment after I replace the bearings?
 

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Caribou, Otter, Buffalo
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You may have a front bearing issue, but we cant diagnose from here.

Replacement of front bearings should have no need for realignment.....Philip
 

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Cerato S Hatch Auto
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Most likely you have a tyre which has thrown a balance weight. The other possibility is a tyre that is "out-of-round". I suspect this because the shake occurs at relatively low speed.

The wheel bearing would have to be fairly bad to cause the problem, and it would be making quite a noise. LIke you, I think that the Tyre Joint is trying a scam. Don't let them near the gearbox. I wonder how they diagnosed it without a test-drive?
 

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'02 Sportage 2 door.
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Discussion Starter #4
Most likely you have a tyre which has thrown a balance weight. The other possibility is a tyre that is "out-of-round". I suspect this because the shake occurs at relatively low speed.

The wheel bearing would have to be fairly bad to cause the problem, and it would be making quite a noise. LIke you, I think that the Tyre Joint is trying a scam. Don't let them near the gearbox. I wonder how they diagnosed it without a test-drive?
I'm not hearing any bearing noise. The only thing that leads me to a front wheel bearing is the steering wheel shakes a little bit at the same speeds. It did this before & after I rotated the tires.

My dad was a Toyota mechanic for many years and played with cars since he was in his teens so I'm no fool. I should have asked Firestone how the hell they could say it wasn't the balance when they didn't even have take the tires off the vehicle but know they would have had some BS excuse.

I'll check the bearings out this weekend.
 

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Cerato S Hatch Auto
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My dad was a Toyota mechanic for many years and played with cars since he was in his teens so I'm no fool. I should have asked Firestone how the hell they could say it wasn't the balance when they didn't even have take the tires off the vehicle but know they would have had some BS excuse.
Don't worry, some places will try to make you feel foolish just for the hell of it. I once casually observed to a technician at a Tyre Joint that my speedo was out of calibration by 3% . "And how would you know that?" he asked, as he proceeded to ridicule my efforts to explain, claiming first that GPS was inaccurate and then that the measured 5km zone "is not perfectly flat".

As you can imagine, I didn't buy any tyres that day! Did have a quiet chuckle.
 

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'02 Sportage 2 door.
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Discussion Starter #7
Was the vibration there prior to replacing the brakes?
Yes it was. I thought it might have been the brakes since I had a warped rotor and due to finding one of the caliper slider bolts bent when I replaced the brakes & rotors.

It's quite possible I have a bad bearing given the milage. In the past on other vehicles I never expereinced the vibration I am now. They all made a roaring noise.

The good news is if it is a bad bearing(s) I work at an industrial supplier which is a Timken distributor and can get the bearings & races at cost :D
 

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02 Sportage 4x4...66 Shelby GT350...70 Mercury Cyclone Spoiler
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If it is the wheel bearings, you should be able to notice movement at the wheel when you wiggle it top to bottom. If the wheel isn't loose like that, then I would suspect a bad tire. Maybe a bad belt in the tire.
 

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'02 Sportage 2 door.
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Discussion Starter #9
I had quite a bit of movement on the left side and a little on the right. I took the left side apart and the wheel bearings felt a little rough. It turns out it is the needle bearing in the stereing knuckle that supports the axle shaft that is bad.

I haven't taken the right side apart but I have a feeling I'll find the same problem so I'm going to replace all the bearings to be safe.
 

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02 Sportage 4x4...66 Shelby GT350...70 Mercury Cyclone Spoiler
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Some info that you might double check on. I believe the big seal on the backside of the steering knuckle is primarily for the vacuum hub system. If you aren't using the vacuum hubs, and the seal looks good, I would leave it alone. Those seals are quite expensive.
 

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'02 Sportage 2 door.
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Discussion Starter #11
I got all the bearings replaced and I still have the same exact problem. Nothing has changed.

Here is what I'm going to try next.

The wife's vehicle is a 2002 Tracker and uses the same bolt patern and has the same size tire as what I have on my Sportge. I'm going to put the Trackers tire/wheels on my Sportage and see if the problem goes away.
 
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