Random onset of shudder/shake

Discussion in 'LR4' started by M5Z3M, Aug 9, 2018.

  1. M5Z3M

    M5Z3M New Member

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    My 2012 V8 LR4 (78,000 miles) is suffering from the random onset of what quickly becomes severe shaking/shuddering. Sometimes it starts shortly after moving off from a standstill; other times I can drive 500+ miles uneventfully.
    The shudder starts as if I'm driving over a mildly washboarded surface but soon progresses to an alarming frequency. Bringing the vehicle to a halt on the shoulder and then moving off again usually fixes it; backing up and braking quite hard seems to be a more surefire way of eliminating the phenomenon until it happens again.
    During the process of stopping the vehicle's forward motion, I can feel some rotational friction points, suggesting some sort of brake hangup. An IR thermometer has not shown any hot rotors, but the next time it happens I plan to endure the shaking for longer so there's more time for any temperature rise to show itself.
    It has been a salt-belt car from new in Buffalo. Caliper corrosion? Wheel bearings?
    Thanks for any other theories anyone might have or, better yet, experience with the problem and a fix for it.
    M5Z3M
     
  2. ryanjl

    ryanjl Full Access Member

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    Search for rear lower control arm bushings. My guess is that it's those.

    Have you seen any mystery fluid on your garage floor to the inside and rear of either of your front tires?

    Wheel bearings are easy to check. Jack up a corner of your car and put your hands at the 9 and 3 positions on the wheel. See if there's any wiggle. Repeat at the 12 and 6.

    If it does not require you to be braking to shudder, your brakes are unlikely to be the culprit.
     
  3. M5Z3M

    M5Z3M New Member

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    No, I haven't seen any mystery fluid anywhere on the garage floor.
    My mechanic (up to speed on LR3s and 4s) says he looked closely on the lift and couldn't see anything amiss.
    New blacktop put down here as recently as last year is already corrugated and a pain in the rump for the LR4 suspension (even more so for my M5's), but there's no consistency or predictability in what triggers the LR4's shakes.
    I'll have my mechanic look at the control arm bushings.
    Thanks for the tip, ryanjl
    M5Z3M
     
  4. ryanjl

    ryanjl Full Access Member

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    The control arm bushings are a common issue on vehicles of your mileage. Mine went this past December with similar (if not as severe) symptoms as you. The bushings are fluid-filled, so when they really go they puke their guts on the floor. Mine showed the shudder symptoms for a little while before they puked, though.

    The best cure is to just replace the whole lower control arm, which gets you a new front bushing and a new ball joint as a byproduct. Parts cost a little more, but you save in the labor of removing the old bushing, which can be a PITA.
     
  5. M5Z3M

    M5Z3M New Member

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    Thanks. I will install new ones and report back
     
  6. PaulLR3

    PaulLR3 Full Access Member

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    Funny, I was driving home to Boston from Buffalo last night and noticed an odd vibration that only occurred on stretches of new blacktop at high speeds. Mine feels like I have a damaged belt inside one of the tires, which is possible given the number of potholes I hit in spring.

    But your issues sounds like a brake caliper starting to hang up. I've had 2 rear calipers go bad and sometimes it starts as a gradual thing that comes and goes.
     
  7. M5Z3M

    M5Z3M New Member

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    The tires were my prime suspect initially because the problem first arose a few hundred miles after a tire shop had lost track of which wheel was where during a simple tire rotation. Some of the tires rotated in the opposite direction after the botched work, but a different shop thought it's unlikely a tire mixup is causing the shudder. Also, wouldn't the problem be continuous if it was caused by tires?
    The speed with which new blacktop is laid around here makes me wonder if new technology in that business is a step backwards in longevity. Much of the blacktop put down around here (upstate NY) these days develops across-the-roadway corrugations between summer and spring.
    Thanks for responding, PaulLR3
     

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