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Automobile Question - Mechanical Issue


Reefgazer
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For those of you who know a bit about cars, I have a question:  I think I am being BS'd on the cause of this, but I don't know anything about cars, so I am asking here.  I have an old Chevy with 215,000 miles on it.  Took it into the shop because the front end was shaking and pulling hard to the right when I drove it.  Mechanic says the right strut is bent, probably from hitting a pothole or driving over a curb.  Must've been a pothole, because I don't recall driving over a curb.  OK, whatever.  Then I get told my rear back tire needs replacing because the entire inner radial guts was pushed into the inner part of the tire.  I have never heard of this, but OK, replace the tire.  I got told this was because I ran over a curb or hit a whopper of a pothole.  I *know* I didn't run over a curb and can't remember hitting a large pothole or hitting a curb that hard.  Has anyone ever heard of such a thing?  The entire guts of the tire being "re-arranged" from hitting a pothole or a curb?  Wouldn't such a hit have rattled my head enough for me to remember it?!?!? 

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The tire thing sounds weird to me but having tires replaced / rotated can be a good thing for a lot of reasons. You could have a tire place take a look at the tire after replacing it and confirm it or laugh about it. 

As far as your front end goes - is it the "death wobble?" That's what dh and our mechanic called it when our 1998 Jeep shook like lamb's tail. The tie rods were replaced and all seems well now.

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8 minutes ago, Liz CA said:

The tire thing sounds weird to me but having tires replaced / rotated can be a good thing for a lot of reasons. You could have a tire place take a look at the tire after replacing it and confirm it or laugh about it. 

As far as your front end goes - is it the "death wobble?" That's what dh and our mechanic called it when our 1998 Jeep shook like lamb's tail. The tie rods were replaced and all seems well now.

Yes, it was the death wobble.  But we've had death wobbles in cars before and they can come from various sources - struts, unbalanced tire, tie rods, etc...

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At that mileage, I would assume worn out struts and/or tie rods rather than hitting something.  But if it was noticeable damage on one side, I guess I can see it being from some sort of impact rather than general wear.  I guess the big question now is did the work fix it?  I’m not above asking them to show me what the hell they are talking about whenever I am working with a new mechanic or I smell bullish!t.  “Bent?  Just the one side? Can I see that, how interesting.”  Asking to be shown something with my own eyes or just asking for the old parts can be very illuminating.  I know I was lied to about needing new rotors once so I pressed them for the old rotors and they couldn’t explain where they were and all the sudden, the guy was just charging me for the brake pads, lol.  

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So the work has been done and you're second guessing them?  did it work, that is does the car drive smooth now?   Have you had the car since new, or since new struts?   

A bent strut is a little odd, did they sell you two I hope?  I wouldn't think that would be a typical scam, like "new brake rotors" when yours are new enough not to tell the difference, or obviously not new.  A second opinion is usually free if you haven't had the work done already.  Replacing just one strut is especially odd, I'd think there would be other components that are damaged from the original cause or the vibration since.

The tire getting it's guts messed up happens all the time.  I don't think that's the best technical description.  What is the age of the tires?  miles? where were they made?  You can find the date code on the tires and decode that easily to know when they were built, rubber doesn't last forever, especially some cheap import tires. 

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Something similar happened to my mom's car when I was in high school.  When my mom pulled the car out of the garage, the right front wheel was all wonky.  Front axel was broken, and the mechanic said it had hit a curb. She knew she hadn't hit anything.  My older brother got blamed (he was 25 yo at visiting at the time), though he swore up and down he didn't even drive the car.

Years later, we found out it was actually my *younger* brother, who had been 13yo at the time.  He had "borrowed" the car, without asking, and without ever having driven a car (definitely no driver's license).  He lost control of it (slow speed, still on our residential street) and ran it into the curb.  He drove it back home and put it back in the garage -- never said a word to anyone.  

Of course, I don't know your children, and I would never accuse them of anything.  I'm just throwing this out there as an interesting story...  

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215K miles is a lot of miles for a car and if the Front End/Suspension has never had major work, you are probably due for major work in that area of the vehicle.

IMO, the most important things on a car, for safety reasons are: Steering, suspension and brakes.  Those are things that if they fail, suddenly, can be quite fatal.

Not sure about this, but I seem to remember that Tires (Radial Steel) are very weak in the sidewalls? Something like that...

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