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Thread: Death Wobble After Installing 4" Lift Kit

  1. #1
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    Death Wobble After Installing 4" Lift Kit

    I recently put a Pro Comp 4" suspension lift kit on my 2005 Jeep TJ.

    Acouple days after the installation a little death wobble occurred only during high speeds of 90 to 100 km/h. It eventually got really bad and started at a lower speed.

    This week it was fixed up but when my parents were bringing it back up to me today, I guess it occurred again.

    I was wondering if anyone has any ideas how to get rid of the death wobble? Any ideas would be good ideas to check out.

    Thanks

  2. #2
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    Probably the most commonly asked question...


    First, what do you mean by "it was fixed up"?



    Second...

    1. check all steering and suspension joints for any play (tie rod, drag link, track bar, control arms, ball joints)

    2. check wheel bearings for play

    3. check tires/wheels for balance

    4. check alignment
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    Did your kit come with longer or adjustable track bars? Or track bar relocation brackets?

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    The track bar had play between the spherical bearing and the bolt, so that was fixed. U-joints and bearings were replaced. It also had an alignment done.

    I checked everything and there is no other play.

    I don't know how bad a death wobble is because this is my first Jeep. It was bad though because I could hear the hood contact steel and the whole Jeep shook like there was an earthquake haha.

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    My kit came with a relocation bracket and an adjustable track bar.

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    Trackbar(s) are the source of DW as the axle tries to wobble from side to side - this is what the track bar is supposed to do - KEEP the axle under the jeep. Worn trackbar bushings or loose connections like "egged" holes or loose trackbar relocation brackets are the culprits.

    Worn steering components will accentuate DW and may seem to improve the condition if you put $500 worth of steering parts on it BUT will not cure the issue...neither will steering stabilizers (no matter how many you stack on there)

    ANY movement at the trackbars (front or rear) is repair worthy prior to replacing anything other than obviously worn steering components.

    Good luck and keep us posted
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    First question. Did you get an alignment after the lift?!?

    Is the wobble only coming from the front? Or does it feel like the whole jeep is shacking?

    Get your tires balanced, get an alignment and check your drive shaft angle. I won't mention anything about the track bar because it was already explained ^^^

    Ps. Hope you did the lift yourself and tightened everything to spec!

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    Quote Originally Posted by CNDXJ View Post
    Ps. Hope you did the lift yourself and tightened everything to spec!
    Also wouldn't hurt to re-check every nut & bolt that was touched when doing the swap. Sometimes after being driven for a bit, things settle, metal stretches a bit, and things vibrate. All of this can throw off torqued down parts. Most manufacturers recommend re-torquing everything after driving 50-100 kms. And again at 500 kms.

    HTH!

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    We think we found the problem. It's a problem with the lift kit by the looks of it. My dad took it the Jeep to the supplier where he bought it and they noticed that the front axle was moving back and forth while turning the wheel. They think that there is something wrong with the control arms because they shouldn't be moving side to side. The Supplier had never seen that happen before.

    Going to call the manufacturer on Monday to see what they say.

    Thanks for the advice.

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    trackbar is letting the axle move side to side....check for proper size bolt on the axle mount side and ensure the bushing ends are SLOP free....

    Control arms only hold axle from moving forward or back.....trackbar holds side to side.....when the front axle tries to LEAP out from under the Driver and passenger side of the jeep (DW) its the trackbar.

    Explanation from the ground looking UP at the axle end trackbar bushing.



    What it looks like from outside the jeep

    Last edited by Dirty Money; 06-17-2012 at 07:09 AM.

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    wow gives new light on it
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    Quote Originally Posted by Piratexpress1369a View Post
    wow gives new light on it
    yep

    and since the steering is essentially pointed straight....and the axle begins to resinate moving left to right relative to steady steering linkage, the AXLE is what is making the wheels go squirrely left to right....not the steering! (wrap your head around that - its the tail wagging the dog)


    I had DW once a few years ago in my jeep and I swore everything was tight....takes 2 people to look at it properly (one to move steering wheel left to right 3 to 4 inches either side of neutral) and me looking and feeling for movement on the trackbar.

    I will tell you, even the slightest wear or movement at a bolt on a trackbar bushing will cause DW. Rear trackbars can give you the same DW, all you have to do is grab the rear bumper and shake the jeep side to side and have someone check for same movements at TB connections at axle and frame.....

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    i'm not sure if this will help you offroad aviator but this is what dirty money was talking about egged holes on the track bar mount . but this is one thing to check out for sure i think mine needs fixin ...
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails SAM_1497.jpg   SAM_1498.jpg   SAM_1499.jpg  

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    DW is fawkin scary when you have it like the video above...I was rolling 110 KM/H on a 400 series highway and it started...the lady in the Civic beside me was freaking because she thought my tires were coming off...at those speeds the only way to stop is to jump on the brakes and slow the Jeep down real quick...at lower speeds I have seen people power out of it by accelerating hard...


    As for those egged out holes (if that is the problem)...I had the same thing, fixed it by having washers welded to the bracket to make the hole round again...

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dirty Money View Post
    yep

    and since the steering is essentially pointed straight....and the axle begins to resinate moving left to right relative to steady steering linkage, the AXLE is what is making the wheels go squirrely left to right....not the steering! (wrap your head around that - its the tail wagging the dog)
    Y




    I had DW once a few years ago in my jeep and I swore everything was tight....takes 2 people to look at it properly (one to move steering wheel left to right 3 to 4 inches either side of neutral) and me looking and feeling for movement on the trackbar.

    I will tell you, even the slightest wear or movement at a bolt on a trackbar bushing will cause DW. Rear trackbars can give you the same DW, all you have to do is grab the rear bumper and shake the jeep side to side and have someone check for same movements at TB connections at axle and frame.....
    Not to be party pooper, but I believe the steering shaft from column to box twists allowing the wheels to snake. Most people try to hold the steering wheel, but if you let go, you will notice it doesn't change a thing. The stock "Y" link style steering links is also a big contributor when paired with a panhard/track bar. If anything is loose, both systems are effected.
    In my experience, death wobble actually puts major stress on all steering components. I had to replace a box after one DW
    occurrence. Alignment is huge factor. Your toe settings can change alot after a lift settles for a couple weeks.
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    Quote Originally Posted by stickyken View Post
    Not to be party pooper, but I believe the steering shaft from column to box twists allowing the wheels to snake. Most people try to hold the steering wheel, but if you let go, you will notice it doesn't change a thing. .

    I say absolutely this could happen with DW...but replacing the steering shaft isnt the cure so it is not what allows the wheels to go (say it fast) left right left right left right.....

    Once the axle starts to "resonate" that axle IS moving left to right no matter what you try to do....Like Igotta said, speed increase or decrease (or full controlled stop) is the only way to pull out of DW. So all your steering connection begins to take alot of stress as well as the driver..lol

    DW will accelerate wear on all steering components if not put the nail in the coffin on TRE's in one or two events....thats why when steering component replacement seems to fix DW for a short while it always comes back until track bars are fixed.

    Super wide tires will bring out the worst in DW as well.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dirty Money View Post
    I say absolutely this could happen with DW...but replacing the steering shaft isnt the cure so it is not what allows the wheels to go (say it fast) left right left right left right.....

    Once the axle starts to "resonate" that axle IS moving left to right no matter what you try to do....Like Igotta said, speed increase or decrease (or full controlled stop) is the only way to pull out of DW. So all your steering connection begins to take alot of stress as well as the driver..lol

    DW will accelerate wear on all steering components if not put the nail in the coffin on TRE's in one or two events....thats why when steering component replacement seems to fix DW for a short while it always comes back until track bars are fixed.

    Super wide tires will bring out the worst in DW as well.
    The steering shaft definatly does not cause Death wobble. I just think that it is the tires moving, and NOT the axle side to side. YES, the movment of the axle, side to side from a worn track bar issue can start the wobble, but I believe the movement is all tires fighting each other, and moving other things because of it. All my death Wobb experience, the Track/panhard was fine, and not the cause.

    We know that it can be triggered by Many things. Bigger the tires, generally the easier it triggers. My Aunt stock xj had it from old tires, and completly blowen front shocks. It was fine till hitting a bump at speed.

    Not trying to argue, just adding to tech. We know it can happen many ways.

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    My Jeep is finally fixed. There are no problems anymore. Thanks for all the suggestions and information.

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    Soooo....why not help out others who may look at this thread in the future and make mention of what the specific issues were on your Jeep...

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    Good point. We fixed the track bar. Replaced the U-joints and tires since everything was original from 2005. It seemed to do the trick.

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