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Old 09-21-2011, 01:48 PM   #1
Petes75Vette
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Member Since: Jan 2011
Default How Do I Know If My U-Joint is Bad?

So I have older threads with my issue of a "whomp whomp whomp" sound in my right rear.

The recommended fixes I could find and were posted on the thread was bad u-joint or bearings in the wheel.

There is no play in the wheel at all, so I didn't think it was the bearing.

Took the wheel off, ran the car in neutral to get a quick look. The half shaft turns but sort of catches, causing it to go up and down up and down. This was causing my sound.

So my best guess would be the U-joint binding so when the half-shaft spins nicely, that rotation isn't converted to the wheel nicely because of the bad u-joint, causing the weird rotation of the tire and the noise.

Dropped the half shaft yesterday, and looking at the u-joints and their montions in my hand...they move well, and look pretty good. The U-joints are supposedly "new" (2 years or so, 1,500 miles or so).

How do I tell it's a bad U-joint then? What signs should I look for?

With that said, taking it one step further...it might be something in the wheel or bearing area. All looks good to me...but what might I be missing here or what signs to look for with a bad bearing?

Any help is much appreciated.
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Old 09-21-2011, 01:55 PM   #2
MelWff
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So with the half shaft disconnected, no play in the wheel bearing, bolt up tire and try moving up/down side to side? When turning the U joint caps or moving the attached yoke no roughness, no rust spots? Any noise when you turn the rotor with the half shaft removed, possible parking brake issue?
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Old 09-21-2011, 01:55 PM   #3
Mike Ward
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NEVER EVER run your Corvette with the wheels 'dangling'. The suspension is overextended and the u joints will bind. That's what caused the up-down motion.

The only way to properly verify a u-joints condition is to disassemble it completely
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Old 09-21-2011, 02:12 PM   #4
Petes75Vette
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MelWff View Post
So with the half shaft disconnected, no play in the wheel bearing, bolt up tire and try moving up/down side to side? When turning the U joint caps or moving the attached yoke no roughness, no rust spots? Any noise when you turn the rotor with the half shaft removed, possible parking brake issue?
No rust, the U-joints look good actually. The car in general looks good as the previous owner restored a bunch of the major components. I'll bolt up the tire tonight and check for movement without the half shaft attached. No roughness at all the on the u-joing.

My parking brake stopped working before this issue started, so maybe it is a parking brake thing. My pads seems to be pretty close to the rotor, like right on the rotor, but not actually gripping as I can spin the rotor and there isn't any noise and/or it doesn't seem like the pads are holding the rotor from moving.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike Ward View Post
NEVER EVER run your Corvette with the wheels 'dangling'. The suspension is overextended and the u joints will bind. That's what caused the up-down motion.

The only way to properly verify a u-joints condition is to disassemble it completely
Yes, I've read this a few times. My bad, but I figured it was the only way to see it in person and get video of it.

I had the wheels off, and the car running. The left side turned perfectly. The right side had this hiccup causing the rotor and the whole assembly to go up and down, making me thing the u-joint was binding.

While driving though, I could hear the whomp whomp whomp, which increased as speed increased. Watching the tire in my mirror, I could see the tire also moving up and down with the issue...so I'm thinking it has to be something inside of the right assembly, whether it be a bent half shaft (but looks straight), bad u-joints, bearing, or other.
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Old 09-21-2011, 05:51 PM   #5
Tim81
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Just a thought try switching you right tire with your left and take it for a ride, see if the noise moved with the tire.....
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Old 09-21-2011, 06:45 PM   #6
iokepakai
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Default Bad Tire???

Had a womp-womp once ! Turned out it was a bad tire,had a noticeable bulge...How old are your tires? Alohas
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Old 09-21-2011, 07:28 PM   #7
billcarson
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i did not know i had a bad u-joint till it was on my picnic table.there was 0 play anywhere but i had a vibration.the wheel yoke joint was bad on one bearing only but was disintegrating.buba might have bent your wheel yokes when installing the u-joints.u-joint replacement can be time consuming when done right and with the proper supporting jigs.btw saw your video.
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Old 09-21-2011, 07:28 PM
 
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