Several times you must have heard of wheel bearing and you just wonder what it is and its function in your car.
Wheel bearing is a mechanism used in all types of vehicle to enable the wheels spin fast with as little friction as possible. Wheel bearing rides on a metal axle shaft and fits tightly inside the hub. On this hub is the lug bolts used in bolting the tires onto the wheels.
These wheel bearings are lubricated in order to allow the tyres spin freely without accumulating much heat due to friction. They are engineered to serve for a very long time. But nothing lasts forever, with time, the wheel bearings will lose its lubricity and start wearing away. In severe cases, this can lead to your car wheel/tire falling off while driving (at high speed). This will definitely put you in an unsafe driving situation.
Wheel bearing is crucial for the proper function of the hub, tire and wheel assemblies to work together.
Below are the warning signs to tell you that wheel bearing is wearing out and there is need for it to be replaced.
1. Noise from the wheel and tire area:
The noise gets louder as speed increases. It is often a humming, growling or roaring noise around the tyre areas of your car.
2. Steering wheel vibration:
Bad wheel bearing can result to steering wheel vibration. The steering wheel can vibrate as a result of tyre balance problem; but it typically manifests at higher speed (like 100km/h).
Bad wheel bearing will cause the steering wheel vibrate at slower speeds and it builds up as the car accelerates.
3. Abnormal and uneven tyre wear:
There could be other causes of tyre wear anyways; bad wheel bearing is one of the causes.
In case you start noticing the symptoms above, then know something is wrong with your wheel bearing. Get is fixed before it disappoints you.