Abnormal vibrating or shaking while you’re driving is not usual. It must be checked out without delay. This could be something very serious, or very trivial.
Vibration, shaking, and similar symptoms are some of the major reasons why Tesla car owners seek assistance in car talk forums. If your car vibrates or shakes out of the ordinary, obviously you’re interested in preventing these conditions. This article discusses common reasons for why your car is vibrating at high speed and how you can fix the problem.
Why Is Your Tesla Vibrating At High Speed?
Reason 1: Unbalanced or worn tires
Your Tesla car drives on tires. Obviously, tire problems are the most common reasons for your car to vibrate. These problems include worn-out tires, tire defects, uneven tire wear, underinflated tires, and out of balance tires.
If you notice that the vibration is minimal at low speeds, but increases as you accelerate to 90km/h, chances remain that the problem could be caused by your tires being out of balance. Obvious, flat spots on your tires are signs showing that the tires are out of balance, the reason behind the excessive shaking.
Furthermore, underinflated tires can cause your vehicle to shake excessively when you drive at higher speeds. Underinflated tires may have flat spots and can cause your tires to blowout. However, if you don’t notice the flat spots, check whether air pressure inside the tires matches the recommendations in the manufacturer’s manual book.
Various road hazards, like pumps and portholes, can easily cause your tires to wear unevenly, for instance, excessive wear on one side or a wavy surface on the tyre thread.
Also, if your tires are worn out (have little or no tread), your car will have limited stopping ability and poor traction. The tires will be slippery during rainy weather conditions. The shaking is another warning that you should replace your tires.
How to fix: occasionally check your tires for damage
- Depending on the nature of damage, the out of balance issues can be resolved by simply getting your tires rebalanced. However, if the damage is too severe, you’ll need to replace the tires. Unfortunately, rebalancing and replacement are things you can’t do on your own.
- Take your car to a Tesla service center to rebalance ore replace the tires. Through this procedure, Tesla technicians use a tire balancing machine to add a small amount of weight to each wheel.
- You need to replace the tires occasionally because they’re made of rubber that will degrade with age and start to crack. Periodically check your tires for damage.
Reason 2: Unbalanced, bent, or damaged wheels
After you’ve checked your tires, turn your attention to your wheels. The vibrations could be caused by unbalanced wheels, bent or damaged wheels, and wheel bearings.
Wheels are the next most common culprit for why your car vibrates. The wheels (the rims upon which tires are affixed) can cause your Tesla to vibrate when driven.
Sometimes, you may hit a low curb or a deep pothole without damaging your tires. But it’s likely that you’ve damaged your wheels, causing them to become unbalanced.
Your wheels can bend or get damaged as a result of passing your vehicle through deep potholes and other road hazards. Bent or damaged wheels can cause your car to vibrate excessively.
If you feel the vibrations through your steering wheel, chances remain that your wheel bearings have become damaged or worn. Although wheel bearings normally last the lifespan of your vehicle, that’s not always the case, particularly if you have a hard driving personality, have high mileage, or regularly drive off-road.
How to fix: contact professional to balance the wheels
- Unbalanced wheels is an issue that you can’t diagnose on your own. Contact Tesla technicians or a certified mechanic to check out and balance the wheels for you.
- If you think unbalanced, bent, or damaged wheels are the reason for your car’s vibrations, talk to Tesla technicians or a qualified mechanic.
- While driving, watch out for sloppy road repairs and potholes, which can wreak havoc to your wheels. Even a little bump that you simply forget can be enough to throw your wheels out of balance.
Reason 3: Brake system issues
If a problem with your tires or wheels doesn’t cause your car’s vibrations, your brakes could be the culprit.
The rotors, brake discs, calipers and other components make up the braking system. If any of these components go bad or get damaged, your car will vibrate constantly or shift to one side as you drive.
Sometimes, because of thermal stress and excessive wear and tear, the brake disc bends a little bit or the brake disc rubs against the brake caliper. This can also occur after a major impact like an accident.
If the vibrating begins at around 50 MPH and is followed by a burning smell when your car stops, then it could imply that your car has a worn-out caliper pin. At higher speeds, you’ll be able to hear vibration as the car moves. At low speeds, it feels more like a scraping sound.
Your disc brakes can cause vibrations when the caliper — the component that produces friction with the rotor to slow down your vehicle — gets stuck on the disk. If this occurs, the caliper will not leave the internal system, thus causing shakes that increase with speed.
Normally, you can clearly feel such vibrations when your vehicle exceeds the speed of 70 miles an hour. Apart from shaking, you can also feel a burning smell.
How to fix: replace damaged brake discs
- Unfortunately, it’s not recommended to repair damaged brake discs. You will therefore have to take your car to Tesla service center or a professional mechanic and get the brake discs replaced.
- Let braking components get checked and serviced. This will resolve the vibration problem.
- Consider lubricating the braking components to help free the stuck discs. However, the discs may get stuck again when it loses the lubrication effect. Tesla technicians or a professional mechanic can help initiate a long-term solution.
Reason 4: Loose / damaged suspension
Suspension could also be the reason for your car’s shakings. When your car’s suspension components become loose, you’ll definitely experience vibrations as you drive.
If you notice your car shakes at certain speeds, but not every time you drive at that speed, it’s likely that the vibrations are caused by loose suspension components. You may notice that the shaking increases if you hit a bump in the road and continue until you brake the vehicle.
However, worn suspension components, like control arm bushings and ball joints, can cause vibrations at high speeds and when you stop the car. Suspension problems may occur along with odd noises like periodic squeaks and clunks.
Driving continually over potholes or hard bumps can cause your suspension to accumulate damage. If your Tesla suddenly begins to shake, particularly if you’ve recently hit something, your suspension could be out of alignment. Even normal wear and tear taking place as you drive can put stress on your suspension.
Once damage becomes worse, it causes your suspension to misalign which leads to a slight vibration on the steering wheel.
How to fix: replace worn suspension components
- It’s important to regularly check that all the components in your suspension system are connected properly.
- The vibrations are a warning that you should check and maintain your suspension system, and replace any worn components.
- Contact tesla technicians or a professional mechanic and get these suspension components checked to ensure everything is connected properly and any worn out parts replaced.
Reason 5: Bent axle
A bent axle may also be the cause for your vehicle to shake while driving. The role of axles is to transmit power from your car’s motor to enable the tires to rotate on the road.
Sometimes, the axles may get out of shape, causing vibration when your vehicle reaches high speed. A damaged or bent axle can cause vibrations. Such shakings can worsen if unchecked.
The axles can bend when your car hits a bump at high speed, or plunges into a ditch, or is involved in an accident.
An easy way you can identify that axle might be bent or damaged is hearing unusual noise at high-speed and a creaking noise when turning the steering wheel (and turning steering wheel becomes heavy).
How to fix: contact professional help
- Contact Tesla service center or a professional mechanic to fix the bent axle in your car. Unfortunately, a bent or damaged axle is beyond repair, particularly if the bend is too severe.
- There’s no easy fix for a damaged or bent axle. In most cases, the axle must be replaced. This component can be a bit challenging to handle. Therefore, it is best to take your car for professional help.
- To prevent such problems in the future, just be careful of road hazards when driving. While driving, it’s important to slow down and pay attention to the road signs.
My Final Thoughts
Your Tesla shouldn’t vibrate when you drive it. Although you might feel that it’s a tire or wheel problem, other issues can also make your car vibrate.
Whatever the cause, if the shaking problem is left unchecked it will threaten the safety and endurance of your vehicle. With the guide explained above, now you understand how you can resolve the issue before any severe problem could result in an unfortunate, costly circumstance.
Ensure contact Tesla support service or a certified mechanic to diagnose and fix the problem. Professionals can help you figure out why your car has a vibration when you drive it. The sooner you get the problem addressed, the better to avoid damaging your vehicle.