How to Tell If You Have a Bad Tie Rod?

How to Tell If You Have a Bad Tie Rod?


19 Oct, 2022

How to Tell If You Have a Bad Tie Rod?

A tie rod is a critical component of your vehicle’s steering and suspension system. Its job is to link your vehicle’s steering knuckle to the steering gear, thereby making it possible to steer your vehicle. A tie rod comprises two ends—the inner tie rod end that connects to the steering gear or steering rack and an outer tie rod attached to the steering knuckle. Tie rods allow for smooth and responsive steering, and they make turning your vehicle possible.

However, tie rods are subject to extreme wear and tear because they are used every time you steer your vehicle. Worn-out tie rods can lead to loss of vehicle control and premature tire wear, both of which can compromise your vehicle’s performance and safety. Below are some of the causes and common symptoms of a bad tie rod.

What Are the Causes of Tie Rod Wear?

Like other components of your car, tie rods can deteriorate over time due to normal wear and tear. However, harsh road conditions like potholes, bumps, and hitting obstructions could damage the tie rods. If you recently hit a pothole or an obstruction and find that your steering wheel is shaking or your vehicle is making noises when turning, head to a trusted auto repair shop and have your tie rods checked. Tie road failure can also be caused by lubrication leaks, tie rod corrosion, and inner rod boot cracks.

Symptoms of A Faulty Tie Rod

Shaky Steering

The tie rod works to ensure your car’s steering and suspension system are solid and tight. If this component goes bad, your car’ steering mechanism may become shaky or loose. The vibration may worsen when you accelerate or while cornering.

Excessive Vibrations

A faulty tie rod will lead to the steering system and parts of the suspension loosening. This may cause the tires to move randomly and cause your car to vibrate, especially while accelerating or cornering.

Bad Vehicle Alignment

Tie rods are among the main components that directly affect your vehicle’s alignment. When tie rods are worn out, they may cause the front end of your vehicle to fall out of alignment. If your vehicle is handling poorly, make sure you consult with a reputable auto repair shop for a proper diagnosis.

Uneven Tire Wear

Excessive wear on one side of your tires but not as much wear on the other side can be a sign of faulty tie rods.

Abnormal Sounds

If you hear a squeaking or squealing sound while driving, especially around corners, it may be a sign that your tie rod ends are worn and need to be replaced. Faulty tie rod ends may also cause rattling or knocking noises from your car’s front end.

If you’ve noticed the warning signs mentioned above, it’s best to have your tie rods inspected by a dependable auto repair shop like Chloe’s Auto Repair and Tire. At Chloe’s Auto Repair and Tire, we are a full-service auto repair and tire shop that offers a wide range of services, including engine repair, tires and wheel alignment, brake repair, radiator repair, oil change, and timing belt replacement.

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