Steering Suddenly Jerks

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  #1  
Old 11-13-16, 03:08 PM
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Steering Suddenly Jerks

This is probably more than an DIY and I'm mostly asking as an FYI, but who knows.

Our 2005 Ford Escape had uneven tire wear which was attributed to a bad ball joint by someone at a McTire place advising against alignment until it was fixed, but when a different mechanic put it on the rack, he said it was the tie-rod and not the ball joint.

In the month or so between one mechanic and the other, who actually made the repair, the steering would occasionally jerk in one or the other direction, both the wheel and the car. This definitely has continued since the tie-rod repair and may have actually gotten worse, but it could also just be more noticeable because the other stuff has been fixed. (We thought it was related to the ball-joint problem or the unevenly worn tires, not an issue of its own)

Other possible contributors: ABS light has been on, something about a ring and needing a new axle and the 4WD light flashes, mechanic thinks it has to do w/ CV joint. Both lights have been on for over a year, long before this jerking thing that started a month or so ago and is apparently getting worse.

Any thoughts? The garage that did the tie-rod is closed on weekends, so the earliest I could take it back to him would be Monday. Of course if it's something I can do myself, I have a lot of tools, but mostly I'm wanting to be informed.

Thanks
 
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Old 11-13-16, 03:23 PM
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Check ball joints.

Replace ABS sensors. Or, at least, take them out and clean.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ldTNuilNbJ0

You have thinkers for mechanics. Philosophers. Get real one, that knows what to do, not thinks.

the steering would occasionally jerk in one or the other direction, both the wheel and the car.

You lost me here.

Can you please make a bulletpoint description of problems and exactly what was "other stuff" that was repaired? It is rather hard to follow what is going on. Remeber how you wrote essay at school? Pint by point.
 
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Old 11-13-16, 03:31 PM
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Driving along, suddenly the steering wheel will jerk maybe two inches and the car will lurch in that direction. It could come more often after a curve and it could only happen at less than 40 mph, but it was only just one of the problems before and didn't happen all that often, while post tie-rod repair, it happens a couple of times within the first mile, enough to make me park the car.
 
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Old 11-13-16, 04:55 PM
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Without being there I am guessing, But if the CV joint is very bad it could cause your problem. It would almost have to be falling apart. You would hear noise while driving. I would be finding a shop that specializes in front end work. Car sound dangerous. Here is one site that has mechanics.
http://www.cartalk.com/mechanics-files
 
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Old 11-13-16, 05:48 PM
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Took the car for another drive.

I now think that if the steering wheel jerks - which is an IF - if the steering wheel jerks, it is after the car and not at the same time. Also, though it has happened on straight, it is definitely more often than not after a curve and it may lurch in the direction toward which you had curved.

I saw on another forum, something which makes me wonder whether it could be related to the tone ring problem with the brakes. Other than the light, the brake issue I've had is that they'd sometimes dramatically self-pump on snow and sudden slamming might cause the car to brake in one direction, but I rarely slam the brakes and moved to Florida, where there's no snow.

After he fixed the tie-rod, the mechanic took the car for a test drive. He came back and said something about vibration above 45 mph, suggested the CV joint, but didn't say anything about it jerking. Could be that he didn't test drive between 20 and 40 mph, which is where I experience the problem.
 
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Old 11-14-16, 05:50 AM
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You may be in Florida now, but if the vehicle did some winters in the snow and salt the rust and corrosion is already at work. Tie rod ends and ball joints (along with brake lines) are especially susceptible.
 
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Old 11-14-16, 05:47 PM
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2005... No, you do not have electric assist power steering.. Though maybe. My 2004 CR-V did. And yes, ever so often that steering could get monkey brain.
Sudden vehicle direction changes are no fun.
I am staying with ball joint. Also, have to add hub bearing to it. I had death wobble on my Silverado and that was part of repair.
CV joint is plausible. But, as it was said, it has to be real bust. What happens, bearing comes out of its grove, or catches on some solid deposit inside of it, and then entire wheel travels in figure of 8 pattern. I know as I once had CV joint installed with bearings out of channels. Entire front went crazy, like a small boat on stormy waves. But this should be easy spot. Turn wheel all the way out and shine light onto outer CV boots.
 
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