The wheel bearing is a crucial part that allows the hub, tire and wheel assembly to work together. It allows for friction free movement of the hub assembly providing smooth wheel and tire rotation. The wheel bearings’ comprised of a set of steel balls held together by a metal ring. It rides on a metal axle shaft and fits snugly inside of the hub. It can be tricky to immediately diagnose a failing bearing, but here are some things to look for.
One of the first things that will alert you to a failing bearing is a noise from the tire/wheel area. As you accelerate you may hear a faint grinding or grating sound as you pick up speed. This noise is heard especially between 15-50 mph and will increase in sound as the bearing condition worsens. Another thing to look for is wheel play. If your steering wheel feels loose while driving and you feel a lack of control, that could be a sign that your wheel bearing may need replacement. Uneven tire wear and car pulling could be additional symptoms. While some of these signs could be from a different issue, its best to get your bearing inspected to be sure. It can be hard to confirm bearing failure, so bring your vehicle to a trusted shop such as Ferber’s Tire and auto for an inspection today!