1998 Chevy Venture front end vibration


Old 03-27-08, 03:48 AM
Thread Starter
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 2
1998 Chevy Venture front end vibration

My van has new brake pads rotors shoes and drums but has developed a pretty nasty wobbling vibration in the front end when I apply brake preasure. Does anyone know if this is a ball joint problem?
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Old 03-27-08, 06:32 AM
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: USA
Posts: 269
Some clarification is needed. Does your brake pedal pulsate when this is happening? How long ago did you do the brakes?
Old 03-27-08, 01:31 PM
Thread Starter
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 2
no, the pedal does not pulsate, when braking. It feels like one or both of the front wheels are getting pulled out of alinement. Thanks for your responce.
Old 03-28-08, 07:32 AM
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: USA
Posts: 269
If you recently paid someone to fix the brakes and this happened right away I would return with the vehicle and have them inspect their work. Has someone carefully looked for loose suspension and steering components? Maybe someone reinstalled a rotor with a build-up of rust or dirt between the rotor and hub? Carefully apply the parking brake at slow speed to confirm whether the problem is in the front or rear of the vehicle.
Old 03-28-08, 07:22 PM
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Jersey
Posts: 526
If the front lug nuts were overtightened it can change the run-out of the rotor and caliper and cause your new rotors to overheat and warp shortly after the brake job.

Were the new rotors just slapped on out of the box or were they machined before before being installed?

Even NEW rotors must be machined before installation for a correct brake pad and rotor break-in.
Old 03-29-08, 07:21 AM
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: USA
Posts: 269
Incorrectly or unevenly tightened wheel nuts cause the rotor to have run-out. The run-out causes the rotor to rub on the brake pads each revolution and those spots of the rotor are worn thin after 3,000-5,000 miles. These thin spots called thickness variation cause the brake pistons to go in and out when the brakes are applied and this is what causes brake pulsation
Bandoish said he doesn't have brake pulsation but he may have the initial run-out which would have to be pretty bad to percieve as he is telling us.
As far as machining new rotors. Here is what GM tells their dealer body. GM replacement rotors DO NOT require machining prior to installation and any quality rotor should fit into these guidelines. GM has found that many brake lathes are poorly maintained or used improperly and the finished rotor many times has alot more run-out in it after machining because of this. I have audited these lathes in GM dealerships and can confirm this. Rotors when properly installed should not have more that .0015" of run-out and some vehicles will not tolerate more than .001" of run-out.
Old 03-30-08, 04:31 AM
Join Date: Nov 2007
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0.001" of run-out! Really! Wow. that is pretty tight tolerances.

Old 03-30-08, 07:56 AM
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: USA
Posts: 269
Correction On Specs!!!

My humble apologies to everyone!!! I pulled out the "TECH Link" article dated 12/2004 (printed below) and the MAX spec for runout is .002" (.0015 on N-cars). I confused that with the spec on thickness variation which is .001", I will go back and correct my posting.

NOTE: I just tried to go back and edit my incorrect specs on previous posting but was unable to do so.

Brake Service
Part 1 -- Background, Measuring, and Cleaning

Earlier this year, bulletin 00-05-22-002D was released for the purpose of updating and centralizing all of GM’s standard brake service procedures and policy guidelines for brake rotor and brake pad service and wear (fig. 1). If you haven’t already done so, refer to this bulletin before performing your next GM brake service.

Over the next few months, TechLink will provide several brake articles featuring information from this bulletin, and in some cases expanding on it. You must observe the practices contained in the bulletin and in SI.

Five steps must be performed to complete a successful brake service.
1. Measure and document rotor thickness -- specifications in SI
2. Clean hub, rotor and wheel mating surfaces
3. Perform proper rotor refinish and documentation
4. Measure, document and correct lateral run out (LRO)
5. Reassemble with proper torque and document final rotor thickness

Contrary to general understanding, many rotors can be resurfaced rather than replaced. Rotors should not be replaced for “lot rot.” In a recent study, low mileage rotors were cleaned up with minimum of 77% of life remaining.

Rotors should not be replaced for pulsation. In a recent study, rotors under 12,000 miles (19,000 km) were cleaned up with minimum of 70% of life remaining.

TIP: Replacement for rotor flaking should be handled on a case by case basis.

Pads should not be replaced unless excessively worn, contaminated or damaged (fig 2).

TIP: If replacement is necessary, always replace disc brake pads in axle sets using OEM pads if repaired under warranty.

Brake pad replacement necessary under warranty:
- Substantial premature pad wear (see specific pad specifications/gaps/wear sensor information in SI).
- Damaged pad friction surfaces (cracks, fractures, separation from mounting plates or other issues that could impair brake performance).
- Uneven vehicle side-to-side/premature pad wear due to caliper issue requiring repair issue.
- Pad material contamination (oil, grease, etc.)

TIP: If pad replacement for one of these causes is performed, also perform and document repair to correct the cause of the concern.

Brake pad replacement unnecessary under warranty:
- Pads generally should not be replaced for noise concerns, unless specifically directed by a Bulletin addressing customer’s concern
- Pads should not be replaced just because rotors are being serviced.

Corrosion is caused by normal oxidation (rust) that is not cleaned off of the rotor by the pad but is impacted into the rotor.

Corrosion may cause owner complaints of pulsation or noise.

Corrosion may range from very light to heavy scaling.

Light Corrosion
Rusting on the rotor braking surfaces may occur when a vehicle is not driven for extended periods. Light surface rust is often cosmetic and can be eliminated during a few normal driving stops.

Perform 15 moderate stops from 35-40 mph (62-75 km/h) with cooling time between stops.

Light “Delamination”
“ Delamination” looks like a layer of paint flaking off the rotor. This layer is composed of rust and pad material. “Delamination” is NOT rotor surface degradation. Light flaking can normally be corrected by refinishing the rotor.

TIP: Pads generally do not require replacement for this condition.

Heavy Corrosion / Delamination
Heavy corrosion is characterized by rust scaling and deep pitting. This type of rotor corrosion may be too deep to machine and may require replacement of the rotor.

A rotor should not be replaced or refinished for:
- Noise/squeal
- Cosmetic corrosion
- Routine pad replacement
- Discoloration/hard spots

A rotor should be refinished for:
Severe scoring -- depth in excess of 0.060 inch (1.5 mm).
Pulsation concerns from:
- Thickness variation in excess of 0.001 inch (0.025 mm).
- Excessive corrosion on rotor braking surfaces.

Pulsation is caused by thickness variation. Thickness variation is caused by corrosion or rotor lateral run-out.

Remember, a caliper floats in the steering knuckle. Parallel surfaces (no thickness variation) will NOT produce brake pulsation even with 0.010 inch (0.25 mm) or more lateral run-out.

Wear-induced thickness variation usually occurs 2,000-10,000 (3,200-16,000 km) after miles after rotor service. Lateral run-out can be cut into the rotor with an improperly maintained brake lathe.

On brake apply, a rotor with thickness variation will push the brake pads apart resulting in hydraulic movement through brake piping to the master cylinder and to the brake pedal.

Here are some details about measuring a rotor.

TIP: Thickness measurements should be done with a brake micrometer (fig. 3), which has a pointed anvil and a deep throat.

Brake Rotor Thickness
SI provides three dimensions:
- New (original)
- Minimum after machining
- Discard (fig. 4)

TIP: If you subtract the minimum thickness after refinishing from the new thickness, the result is the amount of useful rotor life left.

TIP: Brake rotor thickness should be checked a final time just before you put the wheel back on the vehicle.

Rotor Thickness Variation

TIP: This measurement is used when addressing brake pulsation concerns.

The rotor should be measured in at least four places in the pad contact surface area.

SI calls for correction if the thickness variation exceeds 0.001 inch (0.025 mm).

Brake Rotor Scoring
Scoring greater than 0.060 inch (1.5 mm) requires correction. Scoring greater than 0.060 inch (1.5 mm) after machining requires rotor replacement.

Lateral Run-Out
Install a dial indicator, following SI procedures. Generally, the indicator is attached to the steering knuckle, with the plunger contacting the rotor braking surface at a right angle, and 0.25 inch (6.35 mm) from the outer edge (fig. 5).

On most GM passenger cars, if LRO is 0.002 inch (0.050 mm) or less, no correction is necessary. If LRO is over 0.002 inch (0.055 mm), correction is required.

TIP: An exception is the N-car specfication of 0.0015 inch (0.038 mm). Always check SI for specifications for the vehicle you’re working on.

One of the causes of excess lateral run out is foreign material between mating surfaces of rotor, hub, and wheel (fig. 6). These include debris, corrosion, flaking and grease.

You need to obtain clean metal-to-metal contact to get repeatable results. Pits aren’t so much of a problem as raised surfaces.

Clean rotor to hub mating surfaces using J-42450 Wheel Hub Resurfacing Kit. The configuration of the tool permits it to fit over the mounting stud, to remove corrosion that cannot be reached by other methods (filg 7).

And, 80-grit abrasive discs and holder are available in the J-41013 Wheel Hub Cleaning Kit. This is useful in cleaning mounting surfaces in general (fig. 8).

Watch for future articles that will cover refinishing, LRO correction, final measurement and final assembly tips.
Old 03-31-08, 12:22 AM
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Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Euless, TX
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Measure for LRO and if out of spec have a shop with an On-Car Brake Lathe turn the Rotors (helps with LRO issues from Hub).

Also, remember to torque them wheels. GM has a good training video that shows the effects of not torquing properly and not using the star pattern.
Old 03-31-08, 06:53 AM
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: USA
Posts: 269
Originally Posted by mlass View Post
Measure for LRO and if out of spec have a shop with an On-Car Brake Lathe turn the Rotors (helps with LRO issues from Hub).

Also, remember to torque them wheels. GM has a good training video that shows the effects of not torquing properly and not using the star pattern.
On-car brake lathes do a nice job of compensating for hub run-out. I haven't seen the video, they must have produced it after my retirement. I'll check at my local dealer and see if they have a copy of it.

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