Wobbly Front Drivers Wheel [Archive] - GrandAmGT.com Forum


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01-07-2011, 08:14 AM
I think I know the answer, but just looking for confirmation before buying parts.

My daughter bought a 99 GT. The ABS abd Trac light are on. Jacked the front up and wiggled the front wheels. Passenger side is solid, but drivers side has some "wobble" to it. Figuring it's the bearings? Lowered it and backed into garage (backup light replacement. It's snowing so didn't want to be outside).

Jumped on here to do a search, and realized maybe I should have spun the wheel to check for resistance and grinding. I have a few things to do this morning before I can jack the front back up, and would like to get the hub assemblies while I'm out, if indeed it is the bearings. Could that wobble be something else?

Really wish I could just spend $10 or so on bearings instead of $100x2 for hub assemblies.

Also, what's the torue on the axle nut?


01-07-2011, 09:24 AM
It could be tie rods or ball joints, but if it is the bearings you have to replace them with the hub assembly all as one unit. I bought a new hub assembly from dearborn axle on ebay for around $50 shipped.

01-07-2011, 10:48 AM
It is the hub assemblies. Those go regularly on these cars

Lab Rat
01-07-2011, 11:33 AM
Searched a post from way back, says the torque is 187 ft/lbs. Sounds right to me.

01-07-2011, 12:42 PM
It is the hub assemblies. Those go regularly on these cars

Not any more regularly than on any other car.

Play in the wheel could be the wheel bearing, but it also could be the tie rod or ball joint. The real indicator here is the ABS and traction off lights. The wheel speed sensors that are part of those systems are built into the hubs and when the wheel bearing goes the sensor usually doesn't read correctly anymore and sets off those lights. There should really be some kind of vibration and/or humming noise with a bearing failure though, and it should increase in pitch as speed goes up. That is a dead give away that it's the bearing.

01-07-2011, 02:24 PM
In four years, I've already replaced both sides twice. Its expensive...maybe I'm just getting bad parts

01-07-2011, 04:21 PM
I'm still on my originals at 62k miles. Could also be your driving or road conditions... just sayin'. ;)

01-07-2011, 05:24 PM

Would a bad tie rod/ball joint cause the ABS and track light to come on?

01-07-2011, 06:49 PM
I'm still on my originals at 62k miles. Could also be your driving or road conditions... just sayin'. ;)

Probably a bit of a combination of both. I drive a lot of rough roads around where I live. I'm also pretty hard on them when I'm on the good roads : embarrassed:

01-07-2011, 07:56 PM
In '03 GM released an updated axle nut that supposedly improved bearing life. It is silver in color and available as PN 10289657. The torque spec is 173 #'

The original nut was black in color with a sheetmetal cage around it and torqued to 284#'

01-07-2011, 08:31 PM

Would a bad tie rod/ball joint cause the ABS and track light to come on?

Nope. They would just cause other noises and/or bad alignment. Accelerated tire wear and wandering on the road if they were bad enough. No affect on the wheel speed sensors though.

01-07-2011, 09:38 PM
A way to tell a bad hub from a bad tie rod is to note the direction of wobble you're getting from your wheel.

Grip the wheel at 6 o'clock and 12 o'clock. Try to wobble it up and down. If there's wobble, that means you have a bad hub bearing. There should be no play whatsoever.

If you're gripping the wheel at 3 o'clock and 9 o'clock and feel some looseness. It could be a bad hub or a bad tie rod. Replace the hub and re-test.

01-09-2011, 11:04 AM
A bad tie rod or ball joint won't cause the ABS light.

01-10-2011, 08:19 AM
Thanks, I'll start by replacing the front hub assemblies. I've red through a bunch of threads on doing this, seemed pretty straight forward. I only saw one post which mentioned needing to remove the tie rod ends. Is that true? Want to have all the required tools available when I start.


01-11-2011, 09:34 AM

01-11-2011, 11:28 AM
you don't need to replace the tie rod ends.
1. Before you take off the wheels, pop the center cap, and break that 35mm(or something like that) axle nut loose.
2. take off wheels, take off brakes, hang the calipers off your suspension with a bungee so it doesn't ruin your brake lines.
3. there are three bolts holding your hub on, from behind. You'll need to turn the steering completely to be able to access them. get them loose, take them off.
4. if you have a gear puller, use that to get the axle out of the hub, if you don't, put a piece of wood on top, and hit that with a hammer.
5. unplug the speed sensor connection, and throw the old hub away.
6. follow these steps in reverse, while installing the new hub. Remember to keep the piece of metal in between, because that's where the plug attaches to keep it out of the way of moving parts

Disclaimer: this is from memory, the most recent hub replacement was about 6 months ago.

If anyone has any corrections, fire away

10-30-2011, 11:11 PM
you mine as well replace all of it , it only cost like 50 more bucks to do the tie rod and ball joint the wheel hubs go out often on these cars and one reason is because the rod or ball joint is bad too it often gets overlooked hense why so many hub assy's are being replaced the 3 nuts on the back of hub assy are torqued to 75lbs not sure on the axle nut though cant remember.

10-31-2011, 05:40 PM
Dude... this thread is from last winter. I think he's got it fixed now.

11-02-2011, 02:22 PM
lol it is from last winter.

11-02-2011, 02:33 PM
lol people need to read the dates on these thread before posting. Atleast it's not a 3yr old thread this time lol