Author Topic: I'm Lucky to Be Alive and in One Piece!  (Read 2351 times)

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Outdoor Girl

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I'm Lucky to Be Alive and in One Piece!
« on: January 04, 2013, 06:23:11 PM »
On Christmas Eve, I drove 3 hours to my brother's.  Part way up, I noticed a vibration in my car at higher speeds.  I checked the tires, everything seemed fine.  I figured it was a balance, alignment or bearing issue.  And then drove 3.5 hours on the 27th, back to my brother's on the 30th and home on the 31st.  The vibration didn't seem noticeably worse.  On Wednesday, I was driving a secondary highway and the vibration was present a lower speed than it had been.  So I called Thursday and made an appointment for today to take my car to the garage.

They called me this afternoon.  My right, front wheel was just about to fall off!  I'd had my wheels changed on October 27th to put on my winter tires on rims at this garage.  Although they couldn't believe that it had been their mistake from way back then, today's service was gratis.  They think that my car must have been vandalized at some point.  But since I park in my garage, it wasn't at home.  I don't think it could have been at work so it could have only been when I was parked somewhere running Christmas errands some time between the 19th and the 24th.

So if your car ever picks up a vibration, particularly at speeds over 60 mph, with accompanying noise that reduces or disappears when you steer in one direction or the other, check the lug nuts on your wheels!  In my case, it was turning to the right, the side where the wheel was about to fall off, where the sound reduced.
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Ontario

SamiHami

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Re: I'm Lucky to Be Alive and in One Piece!
« Reply #1 on: January 04, 2013, 06:56:06 PM »
Oh, Outdoor Girl! How scary! I'm so glad that it was caught before anything catastrophic happened!

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m2kbug

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Re: I'm Lucky to Be Alive and in One Piece!
« Reply #2 on: January 04, 2013, 07:05:16 PM »
Super scary!  I know the car can vibrate if the wheels aren't aligned or weighted (or something) properly, I never would have thought of loose lugnuts and a wheel falling off!  Something to store in the memory bank!  Thanks for sharing and I'm so glad you're safe!

QueenofAllThings

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Re: I'm Lucky to Be Alive and in One Piece!
« Reply #3 on: January 04, 2013, 07:16:03 PM »
BTDT

I was at a red light in NYC and a gentleman knocked on my window. He said 'Your right rear tire is falling off'. One lug of five was left, and it was extremely wobbly!

Outdoor Girl

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Re: I'm Lucky to Be Alive and in One Piece!
« Reply #4 on: January 04, 2013, 07:24:43 PM »
I'm currently enjoying a very large glass of wine.  I may have a rum special or an Alabama Slammer later.  I'm not planning on driving anywhere tonight.   ;D

(m2kbug - the weighting thing is called 'balancing'.)
I have CDO.  It is like OCD but with the letters in alphabetical order, as they should be.
Ontario

ladyknight1

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Re: I'm Lucky to Be Alive and in One Piece!
« Reply #5 on: January 04, 2013, 07:41:06 PM »
I had a similar close call last fall. I heard something after I had made my commute into work. I drove down to pick up coffee, and felt something wasn't right, As I turned, I heard a giant thunk. Thankfully, there was a tire shop next door. The break caliper had come off the bracket and broke the wheel, which destroyed the tire.

OP, I am so glad you are alright!




norrina

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Re: I'm Lucky to Be Alive and in One Piece!
« Reply #6 on: January 04, 2013, 08:13:51 PM »
A while back, my car started vibrating at highway speeds, but it's an older car (2000 model, over 100k miles on it), and every car my parents had when I was growing up or I've had since seemed to do the same thing once the years and miles got high enough. So I didn't think anything of it, until it started vibrating at lower speeds too. I finally took it into the mechanic, and they told me I had dry rot in two of my tires, and that the car was unsafe to drive at.all until at least those two tires were replaced. I had known that the tires were getting pretty bald, so it wasn't any big surprise that I needed to replace them, just that they were so dangerous. I had all 4 changed out and the car's driven like a dream ever since.



m2kbug

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Re: I'm Lucky to Be Alive and in One Piece!
« Reply #7 on: January 04, 2013, 08:35:30 PM »
I'm currently enjoying a very large glass of wine.  I may have a rum special or an Alabama Slammer later.  I'm not planning on driving anywhere tonight.   ;D

(m2kbug - the weighting thing is called 'balancing'.)

Balanced - I knew there was a proper word for that.   :)

You deserve an extra!   ;D

Only me

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Re: I'm Lucky to Be Alive and in One Piece!
« Reply #8 on: January 04, 2013, 08:49:37 PM »
Hi

I had the same thing happen about 6 years ago. After getting my winter tires on vibrations started. Turns out the bolts that hold the tire on, 3 of 5 broke. Anyways like you, lucky to be alive.

Onlyme

half_dollars

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Re: I'm Lucky to Be Alive and in One Piece!
« Reply #9 on: January 04, 2013, 09:02:50 PM »
I had it happen, too.  Driving back to college in my new (to me) car with a friend in the car with me and another friend driving right behind us.  In the middle of nowhere at about midnight (so no lights!), the car started making noises.  Our friend behind us turned on his hazards (we found out afterwards he saw sparks and thought the car was going to blow up) and I see my entire wheel passing us on the road!  The entire thing came off!

Apparently after the last inspection before we picked up the car, they forgot to grease the axle, so the bearings froze.  And the car dealership was quite upset I didn't bring the runaway tire back with me when I returned the car to them to fix.

Sadly, it almost happened again, same tire, same issue.  This time they swore it wasn't their fault, but they couldn't deny the damage in the pictures from the new auto machanic I took it to when it started having problems again.

VorFemme

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Re: I'm Lucky to Be Alive and in One Piece!
« Reply #10 on: January 04, 2013, 09:55:48 PM »
VorGuy changed a tire in the dark during a sleet storm one Christmas and we drove from San Angelo, Texas to Phoenix, Arizona without him thinking to check the lug nuts the next day.  We had to have all five bolts replaced as the wheel/rim had eaten them almost to the breaking point due to the wobble...we might have had to have the wheel/rim replaced, too.  I don't remember - it was before Ambrosia Hino was born...so 1983 or earlier.

It was scary realizing how close we came to a wheel & tire coming off at highway speeds...(((shudder)))
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doodlemor

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Re: I'm Lucky to Be Alive and in One Piece!
« Reply #11 on: January 04, 2013, 10:44:28 PM »
How scary, Outdoor Girl!  I'm so thankful that you are OK!

Years ago I had a weird problem with a Chevy Impala.  It was a circa 1970 model.

I was driving my car, the Impala, fortunately at a lowish speed, when the whole wheel came off!  It was not a problem with the tire or the wheel.  The thing broke at the *spindle,* and the tire was just laying in the road.  Fortunately this was a country road with minimal traffic.

After we got it fixed the other front wheel started making low sounding growling noises.  That spindle was well on its way to breaking, and had to be replaced also. 

My husband says that this was caused by problems with the bearings. 

CakeBeret

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Re: I'm Lucky to Be Alive and in One Piece!
« Reply #12 on: January 05, 2013, 12:11:02 AM »
We have a vintage car that had its tires replaced a few years ago. A family member was driving it and one of the wheels actually fell off. They were going at a lower speed thankfully, but it caused a good bit of body damage.
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bloo

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Re: I'm Lucky to Be Alive and in One Piece!
« Reply #13 on: January 05, 2013, 12:32:39 AM »
So glad you didn't finally lose one and wreck!

This just happened to us this past fall. All the lugnuts on one tire were loose. DH said the guy at the shop that checked them 'went pale' when he saw how loose they were.

Scary stuff.

cicero

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Re: I'm Lucky to Be Alive and in One Piece!
« Reply #14 on: January 05, 2013, 04:52:49 AM »
oh my! thank all the deities that you are ok!

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