Car vibrates going uphill Inspection
How this system works:
There are many different potential issues here, and they’re not part of the same system. One involves the drive shaft in a rear-wheel or all-wheel drive vehicle. Driveshafts are essentially long, metal cylinders that attach the transmission or transfer case to the rear differential. The driveshaft turns with the transmission, and in turn, it drives the gears in the differential, which turn the rear axles to spin the wheels.
There is no differential in a front-wheel-drive car, but you have CV axles connecting from the transmission to both wheel hubs. These spin with the transmission and turn the front wheels, giving your vehicle the ability to move.
Problems with either the CV axles or the driveshaft will cause vibrations going up a hill and sometimes under harsh acceleration on flat surfaces or gentle inclines.
Common reasons for this to happen:
- Damaged CV Axles: If you have a front-wheel-drive vehicle, one of the first things to suspect is damage to the CV axles. CV axles can be bent by many things, including impacts, accidents, and improper tying down when loaded on a flatbed. If an axle is even slightly bent, it will create a vibration that’s much more noticeable under heavy loading, such as driving up a hill.
- Damaged CV Joints: Each CV axle has two CV joints, one at either end. CV joints allow the axles to flex when going over dips and bumps, without losing traction and without damaging the axle. If a CV joint fails or begins to fail, you may experience a vibration when driving up a hill.
- Failing U-Joint: In a rear-wheel drive, the driveshaft is equipped with one or more U-joints (universal joints). Essentially, they allow the driveshaft to flex under heavy loads while transmitting power from the transmission to the rear differential. Over time, U-joints become loose, causing excess vibration, particularly under a heavy load like driving up a hill.
- Low or Dirty Differential Fluid: Your differential contains a series of gears and other internal components that need lubrication. This is provided by differential fluid (sometimes called gear dope). If the fluid is low, you can expect to see a vibration under heavy loading. This is also possible if the fluid hasn’t been changed in some time.
What to expect:
A top-rated mobile mechanic will come to your home or office and inspect your vehicle, including the CV axles and the driveshaft U-joints (depending on whether you have a front or rear-wheel drive vehicle). The mechanic will then provide a detailed inspection report that includes the scope and cost of the necessary repairs.
How it’s done:
The mechanic will need to test drive the vehicle to duplicate the vibration when driving up a hill. The mechanic will also check the U-joints if you have rear-wheel drive and the CV axles/joints if you have front-wheel drive. Additional diagnostics may also be required.
How important is this service?
Experiencing a vibration when driving up a hill signifies that something is wrong with your car’s driveline. It could be with the CV axles, CV joints or driveshaft U-joints, or it could be from something else. Regardless, it’s important to have the problem professionally diagnosed and repaired before serious damage occurs (a bent CV axle can break, leaving you stranded, or a loose U-joint can damage the driveshaft). One of our professional mechanics can diagnose and repair the problem correctly.