Civic wheel wobble

Synchros shot? Weird noises while shifting? Not sure what needs to be replaced?
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Squint
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Civic wheel wobble

Postby Squint » Mon Nov 10, 2014 1:35 pm

In the past week or so, the Civic has started making some noise while driving. It's a light grinding kind of noise, not dissimilar from brakes grinding, for example. It started off seemingly sporatic, but more recently, I was able to diagnose that the noise pretty much goes away while hitting the brakes. My dad and I decided to take a look and see if we could tell what was grinding so we popped off both front wheels yesterday and had a look. While I do need to replace the brakes in the next few hundred miles (the pads are starting to be a bit thin), that isn't urgent.

We did notice that the driver's side front wheel has some play. While we had it up on a jack, facing the side of the wheel (like you were going to remove the lug nuts), if you grabbed the wheel (hands on fore and aft of the wheel), you can wiggle it in place when it is attached with a noticeable amount of play. The passenger side doesn't have that issue so we're pretty sure that is causing the noise. Anyone have any ideas what it might be before I have someone take a look at it?
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Re: Civic wheel wobble

Postby AHTOXA » Mon Nov 10, 2014 4:43 pm

Wheel bearing.
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Re: Civic wheel wobble

Postby theholycow » Mon Nov 10, 2014 7:22 pm

Textbook case of a wheel bearing failure.
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Re: Civic wheel wobble

Postby Rope-Pusher » Mon Nov 10, 2014 10:48 pm

Image
It's mud chiggers if it's anything.

Ewe mustard driven threw sum hi HHO and mud chigger larvae got into ewer wheel baring and sucked owed owl the greeks.
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Re: Civic wheel wobble

Postby Squint » Tue Nov 11, 2014 12:38 am

Welp, have to go with Rope here, seems like mud chiggers. He is the auto engineer after all. If I take it someplace, I'll have them check my axle fluid, hydrospanner fluid, blinker fluid, and dipstick fluid, too.
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Re: Civic wheel wobble

Postby potownrob » Tue Nov 11, 2014 2:02 am

Squint wrote:Welp, have to go with Rope here, seems like mud chiggers. He is the auto engineer after all. If I take it someplace, I'll have them check my axle fluid, hydrospanner fluid, blinker fluid, and dipstick fluid, too.
good call. don't forget to check the brake light fluid as well.
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Re: Civic wheel wobble

Postby Squint » Tue Nov 11, 2014 10:24 am

After doing some research, it seems you probably need a hydraulic press to install the new bearings for the front wheels of my gen of Civic. Looks like I might call around to a few places and see how much they charge.
'15 Mazda 3 iSport Hatch 6MT
'11 Ford Fiesta Hatchback SE 5MT
'14 Giant Escape City 24MT
'97 Honda Civic EX 4AT - Retired @ 184,001 mi

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Re: Civic wheel wobble

Postby theholycow » Tue Nov 11, 2014 10:45 am

I replaced the bearing on my sister's Infiniti G35x, same need for a press. It is generally possible to rig something up, but I just took the car apart as necessary and brought the components to the shop to have them press it.

Also consider buying a new hub, or if possible, buying a pre-assembled hub and bearing. Actually I bought a hub and the bearing and had them pressed, rather than having the bearing pressed onto the old hub.
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Re: Civic wheel wobble

Postby Squint » Tue Nov 11, 2014 12:03 pm

theholycow wrote:I replaced the bearing on my sister's Infiniti G35x, same need for a press. It is generally possible to rig something up, but I just took the car apart as necessary and brought the components to the shop to have them press it.

Also consider buying a new hub, or if possible, buying a pre-assembled hub and bearing. Actually I bought a hub and the bearing and had them pressed, rather than having the bearing pressed onto the old hub.

I did some searching on Rockauto to find out a rough idea for parts cost. It seems like the wheel bearing & hub assemblies are only sold for the rear as one piece. The fronts are only sold as wheel bearings separately. "1997 Honda Civic EX front wheel bearing" search through their catalogue makes it seem that way, at least (never ordered from there so not familiar with their site).
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Re: Civic wheel wobble

Postby theholycow » Tue Nov 11, 2014 12:41 pm

Yup, that was exactly how it was for my sister's car. I searched far and wide for someone selling them pre-assembled. You would think the market would offer that for DIYers, especially for your Civic.
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Re: Civic wheel wobble

Postby Squint » Tue Nov 11, 2014 4:27 pm

theholycow wrote:Yup, that was exactly how it was for my sister's car. I searched far and wide for someone selling them pre-assembled. You would think the market would offer that for DIYers, especially for your Civic.

It's apparently between $250-350 for someone to install it. I called a few different places from a local repair place that's been here for 30 years to the local Honda dealer. I also probably should have the timing belt looked at so I got quotes while I was on the phone with them. Apparently with the civic you replace the timing belt at the same time as the water pump and some accessory belts associated with all of the above. The local place quotes $300-375 to do that... The dealership quotes $800. lol wut. Why the giant price difference?? I understand a little difference, as with the wheel bearing install. I don't get the 150% mark up by the dealership.
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'11 Ford Fiesta Hatchback SE 5MT
'14 Giant Escape City 24MT
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Re: Civic wheel wobble

Postby IMBoring25 » Tue Nov 11, 2014 4:51 pm

A number of reasons exist. For one thing, the dealer will use new Honda parts, which a third-party shop might not. Aftermarket parts are probably entirely serviceable (there are even cases like the air conditioning compressor and injection spider on my truck where they may be superior), but there are cases where they do genuinely have higher quality and durability standards and other cases where you pay a premium for the logo on the box.

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Re: Civic wheel wobble

Postby AHTOXA » Tue Nov 11, 2014 6:13 pm

Squint wrote:
theholycow wrote:Yup, that was exactly how it was for my sister's car. I searched far and wide for someone selling them pre-assembled. You would think the market would offer that for DIYers, especially for your Civic.

It's apparently between $250-350 for someone to install it. I called a few different places from a local repair place that's been here for 30 years to the local Honda dealer. I also probably should have the timing belt looked at so I got quotes while I was on the phone with them. Apparently with the civic you replace the timing belt at the same time as the water pump and some accessory belts associated with all of the above. The local place quotes $300-375 to do that... The dealership quotes $800. lol wut. Why the giant price difference?? I understand a little difference, as with the wheel bearing install. I don't get the 150% mark up by the dealership.


Dealers have a higher markup on parts and also generally higher labor costs. This usually results in a large price increase. Welcome to dealership service costs.

I have never had any issues using non-dealer parts either going through another shop or buying in a place like Autozone. To be frank, most aftermarket parts will be just as durable and will provide just as much of a service life as OEM. There are some exceptions, of course, but for the most part, you're fine.

Timing belt, waterpump and wheel bearing - I'd definitely not do those at the dealer. The $300 range for the timing belt/thermo/pump is a good price. Last time I had that done a number of years ago, that's around what I paid. Timing belt is almost always done along with those items, just because you're already in there and you might as well just buck up the cost of parts and get 'free' labor on the additional items.
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Re: Civic wheel wobble

Postby Squint » Tue Nov 11, 2014 7:37 pm

AHTOXA wrote:Dealers have a higher markup on parts and also generally higher labor costs. This usually results in a large price increase. Welcome to dealership service costs.

I have never had any issues using non-dealer parts either going through another shop or buying in a place like Autozone. To be frank, most aftermarket parts will be just as durable and will provide just as much of a service life as OEM. There are some exceptions, of course, but for the most part, you're fine.

Timing belt, waterpump and wheel bearing - I'd definitely not do those at the dealer. The $300 range for the timing belt/thermo/pump is a good price. Last time I had that done a number of years ago, that's around what I paid. Timing belt is almost always done along with those items, just because you're already in there and you might as well just buck up the cost of parts and get 'free' labor on the additional items.

I'm very familiar with higher mark up and higher hourly cost - I worked at a Toyota dealership. I didn't think it would be quite that extreme though.

IMBoring25 wrote:A number of reasons exist. For one thing, the dealer will use new Honda parts, which a third-party shop might not. Aftermarket parts are probably entirely serviceable (there are even cases like the air conditioning compressor and injection spider on my truck where they may be superior), but there are cases where they do genuinely have higher quality and durability standards and other cases where you pay a premium for the logo on the box.

I actually had a short discussion with one of the shops I called (not dealership) regarding how many of the parts aren't actually Honda brand anyway because Honda doesn't manufacture them but buys them from a supplier. The dealership service writer made sure to tell me "Honda parts" to which I just nodded and moved along. OEM != made by the car brand.

Regardless, the shop I would consider from the one I called uses all major brand parts - and I believe the guy when he says that because it's a family-owned local place that has been around for 30 years - lying wouldn't help his cause (and my dad has had work done there too). Now we just have to decide if we want to dump $600+ into a 17+ year old vehicle to keep it for a year or two more (at most) or just start the replacing process now.
'15 Mazda 3 iSport Hatch 6MT
'11 Ford Fiesta Hatchback SE 5MT
'14 Giant Escape City 24MT
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Re: Civic wheel wobble

Postby theholycow » Tue Nov 11, 2014 7:58 pm

Squint wrote:I actually had a short discussion with one of the shops I called (not dealership) regarding how many of the parts aren't actually Honda brand anyway because Honda doesn't manufacture them but buys them from a supplier. The dealership service writer made sure to tell me "Honda parts" to which I just nodded and moved along. OEM != made by the car brand.

I read an article about this, relating specifically to brake pads...love the pads that came on your vehicle? Too bad, you probably can't get 'em.
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