What Can Cause Your Steering Wheel to Shake?

The shaky steering wheel can be a sign of early car problems. The two common causes of a shaky steering wheel are:

  • Warped brake rotors can cause your steering wheel to shake when you brake.
  • Unbalanced tires can cause your steering wheel to shake when you drive at high speeds.

However, there are some other reasons that can cause your steering wheel to shake:

    If Your Steering Wheel Shakes When You Brake

    If you experience shaky steering wheel when you try to stop the car or if your car pulls to one side or another when you try to apply the brakes, there is some problem with your brakes. Your brake pads and brake rotors also need to be checked.

    • Brake Pads
    • If you experience vibrating brake pedals or unusual sounds coming from your car when you apply the brakes, the brake pads need to be replaced.

    • Brake Rotors
    • Brake rotors can cause shaky steering wheel if they become “out of the round.” Sudden stops at high speeds or excessive braking can cause the brake rotors to warp.

    If Your Steering Wheel Shakes When Driving Slowly

    If your steering wheel shakes even when you drive at a low speed, the problem can be in the suspension of your car. Your car’s suspension parts need to be checked for any frays or cuts. Loose suspension parts can also cause your steering wheel to shake as soon as you start the car.

    If Your Steering Wheel Shakes When Driving

    • Unbalanced Tires
    • If your tires are unbalanced, they can cause your steering wheel to shake. The counterweights, which are used to balance the tires, can also cause improper balance in tires. You need to get your tires rebalanced after every 3000 to 6000 miles or when you need to change the oil.

    • Brake Caliper
    • If your brake caliper sticks on, they can cause your steering wheel to shake. You can experience burning smell from your car when your caliper sticks on. Debris, rotor replacement, or incorrect installation of a brake pad can cause this problem.

    • Misaligned Tires
    • The tread of your tires needs to be checked for any misalignments. If there are areas that show more wear and tear than other areas, your wheels need to be realigned. How you drive, where you drive, and time can cause misaligned tires.

    If Your Steering Wheel Shakes When Turning

    If you have a loose wheel bearing, your steering wheel shakes when you turn the car. A bad wheel bearing loses its lubricity and does not turn easily. Like brake pads, wheel bearings need to be changed on a regular basis.

    A shaky steering wheel is likely caused by problems that can become worse over time. Visit a trusted auto repair shop if you notice any symptoms of a shaking steering wheel and address any potential problems before they turn costly.