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Main Causes For Steering Wheel Vibration in BMW 3 Series
One of the biggest selling points for any BMW is the responsive and smooth handling that they have earned their reputation with. Drivers expect a premium performance whether their car has 10 miles or 10,000 miles on it and even when something is slightly wrong you can feel it almost immediately. Vibrations in your steering wheel aren’t common but when they occur it is important to identify the cause and get it repaired as soon as possible. Continual issues with your handling and steering will greatly deter from your BMW’s overall performance and can lead to other problems throughout the car. These are just some of the potential causes for steering wheel vibrations should they be happening in your 3 Series.
Don’t Blame Your Alignment
A bad alignment in your car can lead to many issues including accelerated wear and tear on your tires or cause your car to pull to one side. One thing a bad alignment does not impact is whether the steering wheel shakes or vibrates. While an annual alignment is a good idea to extend your tires’ lifespan or to improve fuel efficiency don’t rush out to get one hoping it will stop rattling your steering wheel.
Start By Checking Your Rotors
If your steering wheel begins shaking while accelerating or driving then it is most likely a result of a warped rotor. This is typically the sign of a bad or failing equalizer and/or caliper. Repairing the rotor should be a relatively quick fix and if it was the cause of your vibrating steering wheel it should be immediately fixed when you start driving again.
Check Your Wheel Bearings
All wheel bearings are designed to last an extended period of time but eventually they will lose their lubrication and require service. As these bearings lose their lubricant it will make it harder for your tires and wheels to spin. While other issues are usually only noticed at high speeds you can diagnose a failing wheel bearing as the cause of your steering wheel vibration if you notice the shaking occurring at slower speeds and getting even worse as you accelerate.
Depending On Speed It May Be The Balance
A little more specific than the other potential causes, if you notice the vibrations occurring at speeds between 50-60mph then chances are it’s an issue with wheel balance. Wheel balancing should always be included in your 3 Series’ service appointments, usually between 3,000-6,000 miles and will help improve multiple aspects of your car’s performance. It will help promote even wear on your tires and equally distributes the car’s weight on your tires reducing the shaking and vibrations that can occur when they are imbalanced.
Front Suspension (Ball Joints/Bushings) Are Shot
Over time your 3 Series’ suspension systems will wear down/loosen up as you drive more and more. Whether it’s a ball joint or a bushing that is cracked and worn out you may begin to hear unexpected squeaks or clanking while also experiencing vibrations in your steering wheel. If your steering wheel begins vibrating it is important to have it checked out immediately, if there’s an issue with any part of the suspension make sure to have it repaired as soon as possible. Issues with the suspension can lead to dangerous driving situations and the potential of losing control of your vehicle while driving.
Preventative Maintenance And Quality Repairs
Ultimate Bimmer Service provides drivers in Dallas, Texas with an alternative to the dealership when it comes to service and repairs for all BMW’s including the 3 Series. Our specialists are ASE certified and backed by over 30 years of experience and we are confident that no matter what’s causing your steering vibrations we will find the issue and have it repaired faster than the competition.
Trained professionals should always handle steering wheel problems so if your BMW is experiencing unexplained shaking or vibrating please call Ultimate Bimmer Service today. Our friendly staff is here to help you with everything from steering wheel repairs to routine service and maintenance appointments. This way your 3 Series gets the high quality service it requires performed in line with its’ schedule by trained and experienced professionals that understand your car’s needs.
Call us today with questions about our available services for your 3 Series or to schedule an appointment with one of our experienced technicians.
BMW Steering Wheel image credit goes to:DarthArt. Hands on BMW Steering Wheel image credit goes to:Cineberg.