Temecula Auto Repair and Radiator / steering wheel shakes
  steering wheel shakes

My steering wheel shakes when I drive-this doesn always happen and resolves after about 10-15 minutes but it usually causes the whole car to shake as well. The only problems I had prior to this started were flat tires on both passenger sides that were fixed at an auto shop. Is it my alignment? The steering wheel tilts to the left when I driving on the expressway.

Name Icon Admin
2010-11-19 19:28
Yours is an interesting question that raises a few questions of my own... First, how is it that you had two flat tires on the same side of the car at the same time? Is it possible that you slid into a curb? If so, that would explain the flat tires, the shaking, AND the crooked steering wheel. Odds are, if you did bump a curb (brutal honesty required here), that you've bent one or both of the wheels slightly and you may also have damaged a front tie rod or spindle which resulted in the crooked steering wheel. Or, assuming you didn't hit anything and the flat tires were coincidental, is it possible that you're driving in an icy or snowy area? We often hear complaints of "come-and-go" vibration problems in such conditions. That's because ice and snow can accumulate on the wheels causing a very noticeable imbalance that may suddenly go away when the muck falls off. Keep in mind that we balance tires using various sized lead weights with some as small as .25 oz! Knowing that it should be easy to see how even a fairly small amount of ice or snow can throw the balance way off. If I'm right in the first case, you'll need to take the car to a good shop in your area and have it checked. If there's something damaged in the suspension it can be very dangerous and should not be ignored. If I hit it in the second case, you should probably just buy a sled and wait it out. If I missed it altogether, get it checked immediately as there may be something even more sinister happening like a failing tire, wheel bearing, etc. If you don't have a favorite shop in your area try going to www.acdelco.com and use their "zip code shop finder" button. That will steer you to some quality ACDelco approved shops in your area. I'm biased, of course, but I believe their endorsement is your best assurance of quality service. I hope I've been helpful
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Basics of California Smog Check Program

What is a Directed Vehicle? In order to comply with state law, the California Department of Consumer Affairs along with the Bureau of Automotive Repair (DCA/BAR) directs a portion of the vehicles registered in Enhanced Smog Check Areas of California to Test-Only and Gold Shield stations. These vehicles are called Directed Vehicles. Enhanced Areas are those parts of the state with "serious" ozone pollution problems.

What is a Test-Only?
 Test-Only facilities are licensed Smog Check stations that, by law, are only allowed to test cars; they cannot repair or service them. Any needed repairs must be performed elsewhere at either a Smog Check station designated as a Test-Repair or Gold Shield station.  Because of this unbiased status, test only stations are certified to smog all vehicles in Califronia.

What is a Gold Shield station? A Gold Shield station has met certain performance criteria and is now authorized to inspect Directed Vehicles. Gold Shield stations can perform State-Subsidized repairs under the Consumer Assistance Program (CAP). So basically Gold Shield stations perform the same test inspections as a Test Only station but, if your vehicle fails at their shop, they can charge for repairs.  If the state of California finds that a Gold Shield station is doing anything illegal or dishonest, there directed vehicle status will be pulled indefinetely. 

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