Volvo models with big size tires use of strong steering stabilizers fitted with bar stops. This helps to protect the suspension from being damaged. Apart from that, it also helps in reducing suspension travel to aid a smoother and safer ride, most especially on long distance rides. These are more like second-grade parts that were installed after a suspension or tire upgrade which at times will be beyond the vehicle manufacturer’s recommendations
Suspensions are designed and engineered to work with a particular wheel and tire size which works in accordance with the right recommended stock suspension. When the owner of these types of vehicle upgrades this stock tires, wheels or suspension, this can end up in a death wobble which is an additional weight or strain to the steering component and suspension supports part. This without doubt can lead to a premature wear and tear of more than one component of the wheel stabilizer. To manage this situation and give your wheel a longer lifespan, the wheel stabilizer stop is commonly used. However like every other mechanical parts, at some point, this stabilizer will wear out or show some symptoms of failure. Below are a list of signs and symptoms that will show up when the wheel stabilizer is about to fail.
Vehicle Shaking When Driving
Faulty seals are one of the most commonly encountered damage to the wheel stabilizer. This is the seal that contains the pressurized fluid that permits the stabilizer to function properly. Once this seal pops, the wheels and tires exerts more load on the stock suspension which causes a vibration that would in turn penetrate the wheels and be felt by anyone. Unlike the issue of tire balance which will only show when the vehicle is on speed, this is observed even at a very slow pace of driving and gradually gets worse as the speed increases.
Steering Feels Loose
This is one of the most common signs that your Volvo stabilizer has either failed or is about to fail. Most times it would feel as if the vehicle is floating. This can go as bad as the wheel not responding to your manual input to the steering. Once this is observed, it is an indication that there is a wearing / failing wheel stabilizer or a fluid leakage from the seal. If this is observed earlier, there are chances that the worn out seal could be repaired. But replacing the wheel stabilizer entirely on both sides of the vehicle is the most recommended option.
Steering Is Wavy When Driving
When the suspension gets loosed than usual, then it’s an indication that the wheel stabilizer is broken which results in a shaking motion in the steering wheel. In some cases, this could cause the steering to feel bumpy and choppy when driving. This is directly caused by an additional travel in the suspension due to the broken wheel stabilizer. If this happens, then replace the wheel stabilizer on both sides of the vehicle and then optionally get the front end suspension aligned to ensure that the tires are properly fitted.