Your Honda is not supposed to vibrate while you are driving, so if you feel abnormal shakes, rattles and vibrations, take note. A vibration can be due to a number of things, and once you diagnose the symptoms, you have a better chance of repairing the problem before it turns into a larger issue. Here are some of the more common causes of a shake in your Honda.
More times than not, if there's a vibration coming from your Honda's engine, it's due to a bad motor mount -- it could also be a bad transmission mount. Basically, the weight of the powertrain isn't being properly supported and the result is vibrations in the body. You can visually inspect the mounts and replace if needed.
On very rare occasions, mechanical issues can cause movement extra movement in the engine that you can feel while operating your Honda. It may be that the engine is being starved for fuel, air or it does not have enough spark to run as smoothly as it should.
Some of the symptoms of an engine problem:
- Shudder upon acceleration
- Shaking when you reach a specific speed
- Shake that develops after you have been driving for a long time
You may need to change the spark plugs or the wires. Make sure that they are all connected and in good shape. Also, you may need to change the air filter. It can become clogged and stop air from getting into the engine. Both of these things should be part of your routine maintenance.
Axles are made to turn, but sometimes something happens that prevents them from turning, or they become bent or uneven. If the vibration picks up speed as you do, there may be something wrong with the axle. The CV boots or joints on front wheel drive Hondas will wear out over many miles of driving, and they can make the vehicle to shake or pop when weight is transferred -- i.e. under braking, turning, etc.
Additionally, The drive shaft is used to transfer power to the front or rear wheels, and if something is wrong with it, it can cause the vehicle to vibrate. A worn u-joint will cause a lot of movement in the driveshaft and will need to be addressed right away before the issue goes from fixable to catastrophic.
Braking System Problems
A shudder that appears when you depress the brakes usually means that you have a warped rotor. This part of the brake gets a lot of wear because the calipers and pads press against it and use it to stop. When the rotor is warped, the calipers have trouble gripping it, so there can be a vibration -- more of a pulsing than anything.
A vibration that comes through your steering wheel can indicate that there is a problem with the hub on your wheels. It could be the wheel bearings on a wheel -- or possibly just a wheel that needs to be rebalanced. Other problem areas on the wheels include the tie rods or ball joints. Any part of the wheel that is worn out can cause the wheel to wobble, which will give the car a vibration.
Tire issues will be prevalent throughout your car when you drive. If there are flat spots, uneven wear, too low or too high tire pressure, or any inconsistencies in the tires, you're going to feel it!
While these are not all the reasons that you may experience a vibration in your Honda, they definitely the most common. If you cannot find the problem, then you may want to take your car to the local Honda dealership for assistance, or stay tuned for further information in part 2 of this series. When the problem is identified, always replace worn or broken parts with genuine Honda parts to prevent premature wear or failure on these systems and related parts.