Wheel Bearing Noises Unveiled

Has your vehicle begun making a grinding or rumbling noise? Are your car’s tires wearing unevenly, or is your car’s steering wobbling? If so, these are signs that your wheel bearings are worn and need replacing. If your wheel bearings are not replaced, your wheels won’t stay sturdy or continue moving how they should. 
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Unfortunately, wheel bearings, like other car components, don’t last forever. They are prone to damage, and if you hear noises, it could be because your wheel bearings need to be replaced. Yet, it can be challenging to know what noises signify a wheel bearing problem which is why our team at Car Care Connection wants to help. Our article will unveil the noises you need to know and what they mean. 

What Exactly Is A Wheel Bearing, and What Causes It To Become Damaged?

Before we delve into the noises, you need to be on the lookout for we want to briefly discuss what a wheel bearing is alongside some of the causes for wheel bearing damage. 

A wheel bearing is an auto device created from a ring and small ball bearings. These ball bearings are supposed to fit tightly inside the ring and spin inside it. When they spin, they allow your vehicle’s wheels to turn without friction. 

Additionally, your wheel bearings connect the axles to your wheels. If your wheel bearings are worn or damaged, your wheels begin experiencing problems, as do other parts of your vehicle. 

There are numerous reasons why your wheel bearings could be damaged. These are the possible causes of wheel bearing damage: 

  • Your wheel bears are of poor quality. 
  • You often drive through mud, water, and dirt which causes wheel bearings to malfunction. 
  • Your wheel bearings were installed incorrectly. 
  • You often drive on uneven roads. 
  • You were involved in an accident. 
  • You have imbalanced tires. 

What Are Some of The Noises A Bad Wheel Bearing Will Make?

Now that you know what a wheel bearing is, we can discuss the various wheel bearing noises and what they could mean. 

Knowing these noises will help you identify if there is damage and if you need to take your vehicle to a reputable and respected auto shop like Car Care Connection. Have a look below to learn more about the noises. 

  • Thumping or knocking: When a wheel bearing rotates too much, it will cause a thumping or knocking sound.
  • Snapping or clicking: A snapping or clicking sound occurs when excessive bearing endplay occurs. In most instances, you will hear this noise while driving around a corner or when making a sharp turn at a moderate speed. Snapping and clicking is also a sign of a damaged CV joint, so it’s best to ask a professional. 
  • Humming or grinding: A humming or grinding noise can be a worn wheel bearing or a worn tire. If the grinding or humming sound worsens as you increase in speed, your wheel bearing is definitely the problem. It can also sound like a growl when accelerating. 

Unfortunately, it can be difficult to determine if you have tire or wheel bearing damage since they can cause similar noises. That’s why it’s best to see a mechanic who knows what to look for when examining your car. 

Is It Safe To Drive If Your Wheel Bearing Is Making Bad Noises?

If your wheel bearings are making strange noises that indicate damage, you’re likely wondering if it’s still safe to drive. Unfortunately, driving isn’t safe when you have a damaged rear or front wheel bearing. In some instances, a damaged wheel bearing could cause a wheel to come off while driving, and this can cause an accident. 

Since damaged or worn wheel bearings can be incredibly dangerous, it’s an excellent idea to speak with a professional at Car Care Connection when you begin hearing noises. Our team has the experience to determine if your wheel bearings need replacing. In addition, we can help you install new wheel bearings while looking at anything else that might be worrying you. So contact us today at (941) 924-6199 to book a diagnostics or service.

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