What is the Track Bar all about?
Underneath your vehicle, the steering and suspension components mount together to hold your wheels steady. They need to maintain their longitudinal and lateral positions, lest you lose control of your vehicle. On vehicles with a coil spring suspension, a bar called a track bar or Panhard bar is used to maintain these positions. One end of the track bar mounts to the chassis or frame of your vehicle, and the other end fastens to the axle assembly. Both ends of the bar have pivoting fasteners called heim joints that can be adjusted. When the suspension travels vertically, the track bar maintains the lateral and longitudinal position of the wheels to help you maintain control of the vehicle. If the track bar is loose or broken, you can experience a wandering or loose feeling, a wobble in the steering wheel or body of the vehicle, or a clunk when going over bumps.
Keep in mind:
- Adjusting a track bar affects your vehicle’s stability and suspension. Only trained technicians should adjust your track bar.
- As with all suspension and steering components, an alignment needs to be performed after your track bar is replaced.
How it’s done:
- The vehicle is lifted and supported on jack stands
- The defective track bar is removed
- The new track bar is installed
- The vehicle is taken off the jack stands
- The repair is verified and the vehicle is road tested for proper operation
Have your vehicle diagnosed if you suspect your track bar is loose or have similar symptoms. Have one of our expert mechanics replace the track bar if necessary and have a four wheel alignment performed.
What common symptoms indicate you may need to replace the Track Bar?
- Wobbling feeling when your are driving at highway speeds
- Clunk noise from underneath your vehicle over light bumps in road, especially at slow speeds
- Wandering or loose feeling when driving
How important is this service?
The track bar is part of the suspension on your vehicle that helps you maintain control while driving. If the track bar is loose, driving becomes more risky. Have it replaced as soon as possible.