Problems after tire rotation


Hello! I just had the tires on my '95 Toyota Avalon rotated. When I drove it the next day, I noticed a severe pulling to the right and a violent left/right wobble of the steering wheel.

The customer rep says that it is likely a defect in one or more of the tires, and that he has done me favor in detecting it for me… The tires are definitely not new, but would there be some other reasonable explanation?

Thanks! (Love your show and website!)



Check to make sure the lug nuts are tight.


Thanks, I checked and they are. That wobble is like riding a broken down mule!


If it only happened with the tires rotated, it must be related to those tires. You could try rotating them back just to make sure, but it may be easier to just replace them.


it seems obvious…but did you check the lug nuts with the wheel jacked up???


If the lug nuts are properly torque (which I have seen them forget many times) I would conclude that you have a broken belt in one of the front tires. Take a good look at them for bulges in the sidewall and tread seperation.


It seems everyone has missed one. If the lug nuts were improperly tightened the rotor(s) can be warped. That could cause problems.


Possible, but it’s unlikely warped rotors would cause these symptoms without the brakes being applied.


If something happened like the lady over in the other thread where the tires on one side of the car were aired up to much higher pressure, that could also cause this. Most places check the pressure when they do the rotation and if they had a guy working on each side of the car, they could have had different figures in mind for where your tires were supposed to be.


Oh, but not the wobble/shimmy… nevermind…


Yep, that’s what the customer rep said, that we could try rotating them back and see if that “fixed” the problem.


Yes, I checked them both with the wheel on the ground and jacked up.


That’s definitely an interesting suggestion, thanks. I think I understand you, but could you be more specific about “improper tightening”? Do you mean overtightened?


Although the tires are 6 years old (I’ve put 57K on them), I suppose it could be a separated belt. Thanks, I’ll check them for signs of a bulging belt.


If you fell the wobble at low speed, you can usually visually spot the bad tire. In a vacant parking lot, have someone observe the front tires as you drive slowly past. The bad tire will have large deformation at the belt break…You can easily see it.


It sounds like the tires are old enough to change.