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Old 07-10-2005, 09:08 PM   #1
Scooby Newbie
Member#: 90993
Join Date: Jul 2005
Default High Speed Vibration

Just in the past week I have developed a slight but noticeable vibration at 75 to 80 mph and above. I don't think it engine speed related 'cause same rpm around town seems normal. Vibration is enough to make in-dash cup holder vibrate a bit and steering wheel shimmy just slightly. Car is an '02 WRX with 75,000 K on it ( about 50,000 miles) with Bridgestone Potenzas. This out of the blue, I haven't hit any curbs or big pot holes. I'm guessing tire or wheel balance issue, someone said maybe a universal joint bearing. Anyone had the same problem?. Thanks for any help. I did a search but didn't find much
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Old 07-10-2005, 09:54 PM   #2
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Member#: 82378
Join Date: Mar 2005
Chapter/Region: South East
<--- Hot Donuts Now


search for 'alignment'
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Old 07-10-2005, 10:21 PM   #3
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Member#: 67213
Join Date: Jul 2004
Location: Saint Louis/ Miami
04 WRX STi
Java Black Pearl


well it could be your alignment or a wheel balance issue, but i just got a flat on my 070's and just driving on it for 100 feet was enough to break the belt on one side and cause bubbles all along the inside edge of the tire, resulting in symptoms like yours. tire looks normal from the outside, but the inside looks all fat. unsafe to drive on, as it could blow out at high speeds.

I realize you didnt' get a flat, but the symptoms are similar. But this could be any one of the above.
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Old 07-11-2005, 08:03 PM   #4
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Join Date: Jul 2005

I think I have found the problem. My right front wheel was really hot after a drive today. Noticed it when I washed the car and steam was coming off the wheel!! Seems to be coming from the rotor so I likely have a draging caliper. The draging caliper may have caused the slight vibration, as it was intermittent. For instance today there was no vibration at any speed. Will see about getting it into Subaru for some brake work.
Isn't it great the way this always happens just as you are about to go on vacation and spend lots of money anyway??
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Old 07-11-2005, 08:49 PM   #5
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Location: Fl33tw00d, PA
2003 Baja 5MT
Yellow w/ 220,000 miles


it never fails....or rather it always fails....or....nm...
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Old 07-12-2005, 06:59 PM   #6
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Join Date: Jul 2005

Ok so I took it in and yes its a sticking piston in the caliper. I used to reopair those myself about twice a year in my 15 yr old Volvo. Remove caliper, free up piston, file off any rust interfering with brake pad movement, lube with never seize etc - no big deal.
Of course They want to replace both front rotors, calipers and the pads for a whopping $1600 CDN in parts alone. Nothing wrong here except a stuck caliper cylinder and 1 worn brake pad due to constant contact with the rotor.
I told them by the time I add labour and tax to their price it equals 1/10th the value of the entire car!!!! Didn't seem to make an impression

No way. I wasn't born yesterday ( maybe day before) and I think they are inspecting my wallet more than the brakes.

So Im going to an Independant. Refurbished caliper + $202 CDN. I told him to get a set of pads too since at least 1 is likely to have excess wear. I can live with that.
BTW, I also asked @ Sube how come this is seized with only 70,000 K on it. Never had a caliper sieze on so new a car (2002). Answer was this is the 1st one they ever had !!!!

I'll let you know how it goes with the independant guy
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Old 07-14-2005, 05:57 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by Schuter

I'll let you know how it goes with the independent guy
Independent did the job that needed to be done for $320 CDN includes refurbished caliper and a set of pads, labour tax included. Brakes feel just fine.
And the rotor was not warped, as the dealership told me as they tried to pick my pocket for $2000 to replace entire front brake assembly both sides.
I'm glad I followed my instinct on this, based on past experience. Now I can spend the difference on my vacation on Vancouver Island
I've heard good stuff about this Independant shop so he will get more of my business.
The guy that put me onto him was told last year his Chrysler needed a $3000 motor rebuild. He took it for a second opinion ( smart move)to this same Independent who put a lot of time into diagnosing the car. Turns out the problem was a $6 vacuum gasket!!
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