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Spinning Wheels Brake Damage

I got stuck on ice. FrontWD. Wheels spinning off and on 10 minutes. Got towed. Front end was vibrating btwn 40 and 60 afterwards. Mechanic rebalanced tires and wheels, told me I had damaged wheels from p[otholes, burnt out the ABS sensors in front, overheated all the brake components, and needed new everything, pads, rotors etc. Brakes are 3 months old. I decided to wait. He put everything back on. No more vibration. Brakes seem fine. What to do? 1500 dollar fix with new wheels as well.

Take it to another mechanic. Potholes can damage wheels…but you have to hit them pretty hard.

good idea. seems extreme to me

I Can’t Follow Your Story. The Car Was Vibrating After Being Stuck, You Were Told It Needed $1500 Fix, You Did Nothing, Car Doesn’t Vibrate Now. Is That It ?

The mechanic probably tried selling you things you didn’t need or he / she didn’t know what they were doing.

The vibration was probably from packed snow. Once the packed snow / ice (from being stuck) melted out of your rims the wheels were back in balance and the vibration stopped. Unless the mechanic screwed up something then you may not need any repairs right now.

What to do ? Have your own regular mechanic (not the one in your story) check it out when you get a chance.


Seconded. I’ll bet money the only thing you did was get ice stuck in the wheels, imbalancing them.

Getting stuck on ice, sliding in the snow can pack snow in the wheels throwing off the balance. If you took it to a shop and the ice melted and now you don’t have a problem then I would say the car was “fixed” when it melted. But for peace of mind find a good reputable suspension/alignment shop.

The car vibrated for a few days after being stuck, and after outdoor temperatures rose well above freezing. This is/was my regular mechanic. He did a rebalance in addition to diagnosing, and now there is no vibration. My major ? was whether this type of spinning could really damage ALL the components of the brake system. He showed me the ABS sensors, but I wouldn’t know a good one from a bad one. And he said rotors, pads, calipers were all heat damaged. They had a white tint around the edge that the rear ones did not. Seems to me that heat and brakes go together. I wasn’t stuck on plutonium after all! But I just don’t know. Thnx for reply

Does your minivan have traction control?
That would be the only reason why your brakes would be shot after trying to free yourself from ice.

Is your ABS light on all the time?

Get a second opinion from another shop.


I don’t know if it has traction control. The light is NOT on all the time. Will do re second opinion. THNX

If the ABS light isn’t on, then the ABS system isn’t seeing any problem with its sensors, so I would vote no on replacing them.

I would definitely get a second opinion on this, seen as how there doesn’t appear to be any problems with the van.


Sounds like your mechanic is either incompetent or dishonest. Neither of which would inspire me to go back. As someone else mentioned, if the ABS light is not on, the sensors are all working. If the car doesn’t pull when braking, and the brakes don’t pulsate or make unusual noises, there isn’t likely anything wrong with them.