Author Topic: Shimmy / Death Wobble mechanic shop?? - DC / Arlington/ Reston (Virginia) area  (Read 266 times)

Offline Sunandfun

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Hi all,
Long story short, anybody know of a reliable Jeep Wrangler JK mechanic shop to diagnose and fix a persistent steering wheel shimmy or "death wobble" issue? Northern Virginia area (Reston / Chantilly / Sterling)? I simply don’t have the garage, space, tools, resources nor time to diagnose/fix myself.

Been experiencing a wheel shimmy/ death wobble, extremely susceptible in the 60 mph range, at times very extreme. Tried having one mechanic fix it…. They didn’t and I determined they were unreliable and costly (despite having 4x4 in their company name). Dealership won’t touch it. Any recommendations of reliable mechanic shops that are able to isolate the issue, whether sway bar, track bar, steering dampner, etc.

thank you,
Brian

Offline Nacho

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There are a lot of great shops around here. I think dirt nerds is up there close to you.

Offline R3

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Wondering why a dealer will not touch it?.
DW is a combination of things and to fix correctly can involve lots of parts.

Not sure where you are, Chaos Fab shop is a great place and will be straight up with you.

Parts that can be involved:
Drag link
Control arm bushings
Tract bar
Ball joints
Tie rod ends
Alignment
Wheel balance
Tire wear
Wheel true or out of round

Good luck

Sent from my Moto Z (2) using Tapatalk

Cheers

17 JKURR Daily/rock crawler/overland
2013 Victory XCT hot rod.

Offline 3VOLVE

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Hi all,
Long story short, anybody know of a reliable Jeep Wrangler JK mechanic shop to diagnose and fix a persistent steering wheel shimmy or "death wobble" issue? Northern Virginia area (Reston / Chantilly / Sterling)? I simply don’t have the garage, space, tools, resources nor time to diagnose/fix myself.

Been experiencing a wheel shimmy/ death wobble, extremely susceptible in the 60 mph range, at times very extreme. Tried having one mechanic fix it…. They didn’t and I determined they were unreliable and costly (despite having 4x4 in their company name). Dealership won’t touch it. Any recommendations of reliable mechanic shops that are able to isolate the issue, whether sway bar, track bar, steering dampner, etc.

thank you,
Brian

Bull Run 4X4, Chaos Off-road, OCD are a few off the top of my head.

Joe
Joe (3VOLVE) - US Army Veteran
2019 JLUR

Offline cwkann

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  • Winchester, VA
Hi all,
Long story short, anybody know of a reliable Jeep Wrangler JK mechanic shop to diagnose and fix a persistent steering wheel shimmy or "death wobble" issue? Northern Virginia area (Reston / Chantilly / Sterling)? I simply don’t have the garage, space, tools, resources nor time to diagnose/fix myself.

Been experiencing a wheel shimmy/ death wobble, extremely susceptible in the 60 mph range, at times very extreme. Tried having one mechanic fix it…. They didn’t and I determined they were unreliable and costly (despite having 4x4 in their company name). Dealership won’t touch it. Any recommendations of reliable mechanic shops that are able to isolate the issue, whether sway bar, track bar, steering dampner, etc.

thank you,
Brian

Bull Run 4X4, Chaos Off-road, OCD are a few off the top of my head.

Joe

I think Bull Run would be close to you.  OCD may be also, not sure where they are.  Another is ORI in Winchester.  May be too much of a hike for you.
'03 Rubicon- 4.5" Clayton LA, 37"s, A bunch of skids by TNT, Poison Spyder, EMP, Rock Hard, Warn, Kilby and custom fab work.  CAI, Power chip, Exhaust, 4.88 gears and chromoly axles by Yukon. OBA and Powertank, one ton hi steering, Anti Rocks sway bars, MM 9500lb winch and a bunch of other stuff.

Offline highlandercj-7

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ORI in Winchester.
Power House Suspensions in Manassas.
HighlanderCJ-7

Offline zuke

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Surprised no one's mentioned this already, (Though it is on R3's list) but what you're describing doesn't sound like Death wobble... It sounds like an out of balance wheel/tire.

Before you take it to one of the mentioned shops, (All of them good choices!) If you can rotate the tires yourself, and see if the problem changes (Not necessarily gets better, just seems different!).

If it changes, Take the Jeep to any good tire shop, and get those things balanced!
John
2020 JT Sport S
2015 JK Rubicon
2015 JK Unlimited Sahara
2006 TJ Rubicon
1999 TJ HC Wheeler
1998 TJ SE

Offline Jeepin_Donnie

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Hi all,
Long story short, anybody know of a reliable Jeep Wrangler JK mechanic shop to diagnose and fix a persistent steering wheel shimmy or "death wobble" issue? Northern Virginia area (Reston / Chantilly / Sterling)? I simply don’t have the garage, space, tools, resources nor time to diagnose/fix myself.

Been experiencing a wheel shimmy/ death wobble, extremely susceptible in the 60 mph range, at times very extreme. Tried having one mechanic fix it…. They didn’t and I determined they were unreliable and costly (despite having 4x4 in their company name). Dealership won’t touch it. Any recommendations of reliable mechanic shops that are able to isolate the issue, whether sway bar, track bar, steering dampner, etc.

thank you,
Brian

Bullrun 4x4 diagnosed and fixed my steering shimmy.  I highly recommend them!
Mods, they never end.  My rig needs a sponsor!  :)

Offline R3

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Surprised no one's mentioned this already, (Though it is on R3's list) but what you're describing doesn't sound like Death wobble... It sounds like an out of balance wheel/tire.

Before you take it to one of the mentioned shops, (All of them good choices!) If you can rotate the tires yourself, and see if the problem changes (Not necessarily gets better, just seems different!).

If it changes, Take the Jeep to any good tire shop, and get those things balanced!
Concur.

Still want to know why the dealer will not touch it.  This is usually due to in safe modification or modification they do not understand i.e. coil over long arm suspensions.

DW starts around 45 - 50 mph. If it is a dw....it will shake the crap out of the rig.

A vibration or shimmy is something completely different. Tires, wheels, unibearing shocks or something as simple as alignment.

Zukes idea of tire rotation will lead you to a better understanding of what needs to be fixed.

Cheers

Sent from my Moto Z (2) using Tapatalk

Cheers

17 JKURR Daily/rock crawler/overland
2013 Victory XCT hot rod.

Offline jdavis2nd

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Concur.

Still want to know why the dealer will not touch it.  This is usually due to in safe modification or modification they do not understand i.e. coil over long arm suspensions.

DW starts around 45 - 50 mph. If it is a dw....it will shake the crap out of the rig.

A vibration or shimmy is something completely different. Tires, wheels, unibearing shocks or something as simple as alignment.

Zukes idea of tire rotation will lead you to a better understanding of what needs to be fixed.

Cheers

Sent from my Moto Z (2) using Tapatalk

Concur except for the speed. Have had DW on 3 different rigs and just shy of a dozen times while chasing down the cause. In my experience it can happen at lower speeds and it has always been set off by something like hitting a pothole or sunken manhole cover.

There is no mistaking death wobble once you've experienced it. I would never describe it as a shimmy or vibration. I cannot imagine having it happen at highways speeds. It is terrifying if you are not expecting it.

Sent from my SM-G973U using Tapatalk


Offline cwkann

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Concur.

Still want to know why the dealer will not touch it.  This is usually due to in safe modification or modification they do not understand i.e. coil over long arm suspensions.

DW starts around 45 - 50 mph. If it is a dw....it will shake the crap out of the rig.

A vibration or shimmy is something completely different. Tires, wheels, unibearing shocks or something as simple as alignment.

Zukes idea of tire rotation will lead you to a better understanding of what needs to be fixed.

Cheers

Sent from my Moto Z (2) using Tapatalk

Concur except for the speed. Have had DW on 3 different rigs and just shy of a dozen times while chasing down the cause. In my experience it can happen at lower speeds and it has always been set off by something like hitting a pothole or sunken manhole cover.

There is no mistaking death wobble once you've experienced it. I would never describe it as a shimmy or vibration. I cannot imagine having it happen at highways speeds. It is terrifying if you are not expecting it.

Sent from my SM-G973U using Tapatalk

This is absolutely true!  But I would say it is terrifying even if you are expecting it....  (when that would be I don't know)   :razz
'03 Rubicon- 4.5" Clayton LA, 37"s, A bunch of skids by TNT, Poison Spyder, EMP, Rock Hard, Warn, Kilby and custom fab work.  CAI, Power chip, Exhaust, 4.88 gears and chromoly axles by Yukon. OBA and Powertank, one ton hi steering, Anti Rocks sway bars, MM 9500lb winch and a bunch of other stuff.

Offline zuke

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I couldn't even begin to tell you the number of times I've been expecting it, KNOWING I was driving a vehicle that was going to wobble and expecting it.... when it finally happens it's almost a relief after the terror of WAITING for it to happen :D
John
2020 JT Sport S
2015 JK Rubicon
2015 JK Unlimited Sahara
2006 TJ Rubicon
1999 TJ HC Wheeler
1998 TJ SE

Offline cwkann

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I couldn't even begin to tell you the number of times I've been expecting it, KNOWING I was driving a vehicle that was going to wobble and expecting it.... when it finally happens it's almost a relief after the terror of WAITING for it to happen :D

Trudat!
'03 Rubicon- 4.5" Clayton LA, 37"s, A bunch of skids by TNT, Poison Spyder, EMP, Rock Hard, Warn, Kilby and custom fab work.  CAI, Power chip, Exhaust, 4.88 gears and chromoly axles by Yukon. OBA and Powertank, one ton hi steering, Anti Rocks sway bars, MM 9500lb winch and a bunch of other stuff.

Offline jdavis2nd

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    • Black Goat Off-Road Club
I couldn't even begin to tell you the number of times I've been expecting it, KNOWING I was driving a vehicle that was going to wobble and expecting it.... when it finally happens it's almost a relief after the terror of WAITING for it to happen :D

Trudat!

The last time I was dealing with this on the JL there was a certain spot on the road where I could make it happen. To test if I had fixed the problem I needed to head back to that spot. I chickened out soooo many times before manning up and hitting the dip in the road with enough speed. Should have recorded myself for youtube :D.

Offline gravitywell

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I've had awesome experience with @BullRun4x4 and Powerhouse Suspension.

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