Hey, drivers! Today we’re going to talk about one of the scariest things that can happen to you on the road in a Jeep. I think that’s Death Wobble, so this article is all about Death Wobble and if you’ve experienced Death Wobble you probably know exactly as for what I’m talking about, if you haven’t done this and have just read about it, you may be a little confused about the difference between Death Wobble and just a regular wobble well. Both will be a loose feeling in your steering but the death wobble is usually defined by a very strong, very aggressive swing of the tires and also the steering wheel, which is almost impossible to control and usually you have to come almost completely to a stop, if not completely stop, to stop the wobble and then again. Most of the time caused by a few loose suspension components, so let’s get out on the road, so I can explain you exactly what Death Wobble looks like on the inside and outside of the vehicle. Let’s jump in!
Firstly, I have loosened the tie rod on this Jeep and will drive over a small piece of wood on the road, to cause the death wiggle and show you again how it feels, but instead of just sitting in it to tell you how it feels, I have a little wiggle lambeter, I have the rhino diagram. I’ve got everything set up, that was maybe about 30 mph and it came to a stop before I stopped but that was the wiggle of death, the steering wheel was really going back and forth, there was nothing I would do to be able to stop it. After that I tried to turn to put it back up, put it back up and this time talk to you a little bit about what to do if you experience death wobble on the street.
Death Wobble on the Street
So, what you want to do when you experience death wiggles is blow off the gas, of course you are not going to want to accelerate any further and if you have real death wiggle it probably won’t come to a full stop until you get to a full stop come, so you can go two mph and the bob is still going to happen. Best practices blow it off again you want to let off the gas you want to slow down but you don’t want to being aggressive on the brakes because it’ll tip your nose down and things can get a little shaky there. So be a little light on the brakes and don’t try to reach over the steering wheel, inflate it. If you want it a little light on the steering wheel, take care of the brakes there, put the clutch in. When I went down to about 15 miles per hour, my wobbling has stopped for me, if that happens and you close again, you can go on and drive off.
How to Fix the Jiggle
So, now I will show you how to fix the jiggle if you have it. On top of the lift I retightened the tie rod bolt, I’ll get it back out, over the same piece Run wood and make sure that fixes the problem. The reason we did that is because it’s right here is what causes jeep death wobble for 99% of you it will be the track bar screw here on the axle side and the reason is that the screw doesn’t always go right into the end of the tie rod or even into the bracket itself is really the clamping force that gives you that screw that keeps the tie rod from moving. So, this needs to be tighter than you think.
How to Fix Jeep Death Wobble
I have a big crowbar, it has to be really very tight, and on GP that I have a three-and-a-half-inch rock crawler suspension that includes an adjustable tie rod that has a spherical joint on either end here, so that will depend on your setup slightly different. If you have a factory Jeep lifting with a factory tie rod, this situation will be very similar. This will still be the culprit for the vast majority of you. Now you can also check the frame side up there. To check that could be the problem, but usually it’s down there on the axle side, if the screw isn’t loose, if you tighten and tighten and you still have the same problem, it could be a problem with the tie rod itself. Since this spherical joint could be worn out, it could also have blogged or hollowed out the hole in the bracket itself, so these are all issues that could be in this area that might keep you from making everything as tight as necessary. Eliminate any kind of death stage.
So, if you have any of these issues you might want to try placing the tie rod or having something welded to your bracket, a couple of the other things that could make the wobble of death would be control arms, if you have the same problem, if your control arms are either loose, the hole is swallowed, or the joint in the control arm itself is worn out which could lead to a death wobble problem – the tires are now out of whack, this won’t happen as often which usually results in a wobble, but not one complete death wobble. But again, if you’re really trying to chase your death wobble, you may not find it in your balance, but again most of you will find your problem on the axle side tie rod bracket.
So, if you’ve tried tightening everything up, screw the tie rod bolts on the wishbones, but just tightening them doesn’t seem to help and you think you have a worn component, then replacing that component is probably the way to go. Well, if your problem is worn tie rod bushings, this will solve your death wobble problem. This can also add extra articulation to your Jeep if you get a ball-jointed tie rod not at one or both ends, you can get much more off-road motion. If you find your wishbone bushings bad with an upgrade instead of an Eliam style, replacement is great and offers a lot more power. It has adjustment options, so you can adjust your caster and pinion angle forward, and just like we discussed with the tie rod, you have a ball joint on one end of it and that will provide some extra articulation and flex in the front end of the Jeep which is great for off road driving.
The Steering Stabilizer
One of the things we didn’t talk about under the Jeep is the steering stabilizer. There is a hawk replacement by means of which your factory steering stabilizer will never be the cause. If you have a broken or leaky steering stabilizer, it’s probably a good idea to replace it, but it won’t be the cause of your problems again. You want to find out what’s loose or worn under the Jeep and fix that, then get rid of your death wobble and if you have a bent, broken, or leaking stabilizer, throw a new one on it. Now if you go for an OEM style with anti-roll bar, the vast majority of you will be more than enough for the way you use your Jeep. But if you are looking for an upgrade there is some that are considerably more expensive but give you a lot more features, and this one from Falcon will be one of those options.
After that I took the Jeep out on the road, and when I have one really tight spare, everything feels so much better. So, there you go, no wobble, sure, a little jolt on that doha bump just from hitting the sill, but no steady steering wobble, no deadly wobble. Everything was good and done by tightening everything from the bottom, now when you do what I did, you tighten everything.
Still got a death shake? Don’t be afraid to take your Jeep to a workshop, let them have a look at it. Make sure you comment below to let me know what your death level experience was, how you solved yours or if you are still struggling. Drive safely!