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Guest Message by DevFuse
 

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Front end wobble when cold - 1992 Subaru Legacy AWD Wagon

Front end.

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11 replies to this topic

#1 pa_trick

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Posted 27 March 2014 - 11:06 PM

I drove the boy's "new" Legacy for the first time tonight and for all of the good about that car, There were two things I need some direction on:

 

1. Starting it up cold and driving the front end has a wobble at all speeds up to 45 mph (could not go faster on those roads) until it went about 5 miles and the wobble started lessening. It was gone after about 10 miles. Is this an AWD thing? I cannot believe it is supposed to act like that.

 

2. During the wobble and for the rest of the 30 mile drive, the car pulls to the right. More at certain speeds (37mph and 51 mph) than any others. In a non-AWD car I would go to directly to alignment, but I just do not know this system well enough.

 

Thanks in advance for your thoughts and advice.

 

 



#2 john in KY

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Posted 28 March 2014 - 05:05 AM

I would look closely at the right front wheel. Sounds like a wheel bearing failure to me. 

 

Edit:  A warped rotor will also cause this.


Edited by john in KY, 28 March 2014 - 07:57 AM.


#3 heartless

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Posted 28 March 2014 - 06:38 AM

quick and easy check

 

jack front of car up - a shop jack under the front cross member, in the middle, works very well...just make sure you arent on the oil pan

grab a tire at 12 and 6 o'clock and try to wiggle it - check both sides...

if there is movement, it is very likely the wheel bearing is shot

 

same check can be performed on the rear of the car using the rear diff as a jacking point.

 

as an example (a rather extreme one...) - Wheel Bearing Job FAIL

 

yours probably wont be quite that bad, but that will give you an idea of what you are looking for...that was on a 1990 Legacy wagon

 

these cars use pressed in roller type bearings so changing them can be a challenge if you dont have the right tools.


Edited by heartless, 28 March 2014 - 06:39 AM.


#4 1 Lucky Texan

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Posted 28 March 2014 - 08:00 AM

check for a frozen caliper

#5 Rooster2

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Posted 28 March 2014 - 08:17 AM

Suggest you also check the condition of the front tires.

 

All Subarus drive like normal cars, when everything mechanical is correct.



#6 pa_trick

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Posted 28 March 2014 - 08:37 AM

Thanks all

 

The brakes are good and does not pull when braking. 

 

The tires LOOK good, but I am not sure about the balance, However, my experience with Wheel Balance is that wobble is only at some speeds and does not go away. 

 

I will check the bearings first and go from there.



#7 1 Lucky Texan

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Posted 28 March 2014 - 08:43 AM

swap tires front to back.

are they all the same model and wear-level?

#8 pa_trick

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Posted 28 March 2014 - 09:39 AM

I just jacked it up and checked. Both front tire turn free. There is no vertical looseness in either wheel. I am about to drive it again and will pay close attention to the symptoms.



#9 heartless

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Posted 28 March 2014 - 06:20 PM

try what Texan suggested - swap tires front to rear then drive again, see if anything changes...



#10 Fairtax4me

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Posted 29 March 2014 - 06:47 AM

If the tires are old or spent some time sitting in one place one or more could be flat-spotted. Usually noticeable when the tire is cold, and goes away as the tire warms up and becomes more flexible. This can also be caused by a manufacturing defect that makes a section of the tread stiffer than the rest. Pulling only at certain speeds is also a characteristic of a tire defect, though it could be an alignment issue as well.

#11 pa_trick

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Posted 05 April 2014 - 09:31 AM

Update - It was the tires. The tires were Firestone with a tread depth of about 3/8 inch. They looked nearly new and in pretty good shape. But it turns out the tread was separating and there were belt and cording material sticking out of the inside of one of the tires. I wonder what that says about Firestone tires..



#12 Roopilot

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Posted 29 April 2014 - 04:19 PM

I had the same with Yokahama's. I think any one can get bad ones. I'm trying a set of Coopers now.






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