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I have a 2001 Outback LL Bean with about 205k miles.

With initial braking the wheel(s) shimmy but when you press the brake harder, further into the brake cycle, the shimmy goes away.

Any diagnoses so I know what's going on when I bring it into the shop?

Thanks!

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ok are you talking about the steering wheel shimmying or the actual wheels themself.....either way i would get under there and just take a look around for any loose/damaged or missing steering/suspension parts......also check your brake pads and rotors....do you notice your brake pedal pulsating at all when you stop?

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ok are you talking about the steering wheel shimmying or the actual wheels themself.....either way i would get under there and just take a look around for any loose/damaged or missing steering/suspension parts......also check your brake pads and rotors....do you notice your brake pedal pulsating at all when you stop?

 

 

It's the steering wheel.

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and it only happens when you brake........do you feel any pulsation in the brake pedal when you brake?........right off the bat im going to say that you have warped front brake rotors......

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and it only happens when you brake........do you feel any pulsation in the brake pedal when you brake?........right off the bat im going to say that you have warped front brake rotors......

 

That's what I was thinking which leads me to believe that, as great as this car is, this is another chronic problem in this bad braking system. I had warped rotors a couple of times before which seems like more than a coincidence.

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I had this same issue with my 97 OBW. I also had what I thought were several "warped" rotors based on the shimmy, not by actually checking them.

I replaced the rotors instead of having them turned. Each time I cleaned the new rotors with brake cleaner. After a few months the shimmey would return.

Seems that some rotors from the land of the dragon have a protective coating for shipping that isn't removed by brake cleaner, but by hot soappy water. The coating is burned into the pads with use over time and the pads start grabbing errecticlly causing a shimmey that in my case was worst the faster the speed of the car.

Try having the rotors cut and ask the shop to check and tell you if they were really warped. Once cut they'll be clean, replace the pads, lube the slide rails and bracket. You should be all set. I've had lots of soobs their brakes were fine.

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I would say rotors. Don't buy cheap chineese rotors. They also are made of questionable materials.

 

Also at that high mileage, your wheel bearings are probably reacing the end of thier service life.

 

nipper

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Can wheel bearings cause that?

 

I get a slight vibration as well when I first touch the brakes but it goes away as I put more pressure on it.

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Can wheel bearings cause that?

 

I get a slight vibration as well when I first touch the brakes but it goes away as I put more pressure on it.

 

Yes they can, but rule out the simple stuff first, like a warped rotor, or high/hard spots.

 

nipper

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Yes they can, but rule out the simple stuff first, like a warped rotor, or high/hard spots.

 

nipper

 

How big a deal (and how expensive) are bearings to replace?

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