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Discussion Starter #1
I've got a 2020 Tundra TRD Offroad with 16K miles on it. A few thousand miles ago it developed a slight steering vibration. It feels like something in the driveline, like a CV joint is starting to go. There's no sound associated with it. It is intermittant and only there about 75% of the time.

Vibration was present when the truck was 100% stock. The truck now has a 2" Rancho quicklift on the front and the vibration feels basically the same.

This is a brand new truck so I'm shocked that there is a vibration like this. I have not gone to the dealer to have them investigate yet.

Has anyone else had an issue like this with a newer truck? I've searched this forum and it seems like there were some similar issues with newer trucks several years ago but I didn't find anything regarding newer trucks in the past several years.
 

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No vibes on my oem 2018.

Since your vib was there before the lift ,, you REALLY should have taken it in then. Because with the cheapo Rancho lift on there now they will blame that for sure . I can't blame them for that. Big mistake .
I would take to a front end shop and let them have a look .
Good luck .
 

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Discussion Starter #3
There's definitely the risk of Toyota telling me that this isn't their issue. I thought about that before proceeding and didn't really care - the ride quality wasn't bearable stock. If I end up getting stuck with the expense of chasing down this front-end vibration, I can bear that. Hopefully Toyota knows what it is and takes care of it, but if they don't then I'll just keep that in mind when it is time for my next truck.

I really like Toyota, to the point where I've visited a factory and taken a tour - but I'm regretting getting a Tundra. When picking out a truck, I figured that the Tundra wasn't the most refined but at least would be bulletproof.
 

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Have you rotated the tires to see if the vibration moves? You may want to try getting the tires road forced balanced.
 

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I had a increasing bad vibration at about 140K miles on 2007 Misdiagnosed by local Toyota dealer and tire dealership as (a) drive train, (b) tire, (c) wheel. Ordeal took months. Finally replaced three U-joints. Problem solved. Shouldn't happen on a new Tundra.
 

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I would really like to know the outcome on this one. I have a 2019 Tundra TSS 2WD that had the larger 20” wheels put on it with the package. It had less than 10k on it and has already been in once for this issue. At first the local dealer here in Texas tried to blame the wheels “I” put on the truck, once I finally convinced them that “they” put the wheels on the truck they finally decided to look into it. Rotated the tires and told me I was good to go. Still has a vibration in the steering wheel but mostly when the tires are cold, or at first drive in the morning and usually only happens around 60 mph.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Two days ago it vibrated for about 40% of the time I was driving - probably 20 out of 50 miles. Today it vibrated for less than a mile, just for a minute this AM and for a minute or two this afternoon. We'll see if it ever becomes constant, but right now I'm sure the dealership won't be able to replicate it to even see there is an issue.

I have tried to figure out of cold tires or cold something could have anything to do with it. I thought I was noticing a pattern of it happening when the truck was cold but I didn't notice that today.

If this were a truck with a 80K miles on it, I'd totally understand - its a truck. But its a new truck, and Toyota has had plenty of time to work through this design.
 

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Check tire balance (yes, have them road forced balanced), check ball joints and tie rods, check wheel lug torques. I have had issues with my Tundra's after a tire rotation that I get a front end vibration and carefully re-torquing the lug nuts fixed it.

And check those tires. Depending on the tires you have, they can go out of balance and/or get out of round. I really like Michelin tires because they hold their balance and stay round. BF Goodrich seems good as well (made by Michelin). And I have had good success with Firestone. Nothing else seems to stay balanced and stay round.

If I were a betting man, I would put my money on a bad tire or out of balance.

A Cv joint usually gives an indication when you are turning sharply one way or the other. Considering the year and mileage, I doubt that is the issue.
 

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Goodyear Wrangler AT which I did not understand on the 2WD truck. Taking it in next week for the 10k service and going to tell them to keep it awhile and drive in the morning to see if they can replicate the problem.
I got the wheel and tire protection package when I bought it so hopefully they can figure it out.
 

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The Goodyear Wrangler tires are known to fail badly long before the tread is worn out. My nephew has a F-150, and has had several of these tires fail at around 30K or less. The belts break, the tires goes out of round, and you can get bulges and major blowouts. The Goodyear dealer in our area said these tires are having a 100% failure rate before the tread is worn down to minimum.

To check the tires, jack them up off the ground and rotate the tire while you watch the tread and see if the tread goes straight around or if it wobbles side to side. Also look for bulges and roundness. The tire really should be almost perfectly round and rotate nice and straight.
 

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I would really like to know the outcome on this one. I have a 2019 Tundra TSS 2WD that had the larger 20” wheels put on it with the package. It had less than 10k on it and has already been in once for this issue. At first the local dealer here in Texas tried to blame the wheels “I” put on the truck, once I finally convinced them that “they” put the wheels on the truck they finally decided to look into it. Rotated the tires and told me I was good to go. Still has a vibration in the steering wheel but mostly when the tires are cold, or at first drive in the morning and usually only happens around 60 mph.
I have same thing on my 2019 4x4. First thing I noticed driving home from the dealership. Tires have been rebalanced and rotated by Toyota. No help. Took to tire dealer had tires road force balanced. 2 out of 4 tires were bad. Ended up putting new wheels and tires on truck,road force balanced again. Truck was good for a few days,but back to doing it again. Tires are junk these days I guess.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Yesterday was definitely OK to live with. Today it vibrated/pulsed a ton. I can't consistently replicate it but it does seem to change (either starting or stopping) when I go over a really bumpy stretch. It also seems to stop when I engage the 4WD, and once today when shifting either into or out of 4WD one of the hubs up front made an awful noise for a moment. I was on dry pavement but was going perfectly straight under very moderate throttle at about 15mph so it should have been fine.

I haven't gotten my tires balanced - I'll try that soon. What happens during a 'road force balance' test that makes it different from a regular balancing?

For anyone with similar vibrations/pulsing, is it constant for you or only occasional?
 

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One other thing to try is when it starts to vibrate, slip it into neutral and see if it goes away. That is the test for a universal joint problem. If the vibration goes away when you put it in neutral, have them inspect the drive shaft carefully.

There are a few things that can cause a tire to be out of balance. The weight balance of the tire, sidewall stiffness of the tire, roundness of the tires, broken belts in the tire, bent rim. Other issues that cause a vibration like this are the universal joint or drive shaft problems, bad tie rods, bad A-arm bushings, loose rim or uneven torqued lug nuts.

A normal balance adds weights so the tire/wheel has even balance all the way around.

But a tire can also have uneven side wall thickness and/or stiffness. So, even though the tire is weight balanced, every time it goes over the stiff part of the sidewall, the tire jumps up and it feels the same as being out of balance. A road force balance presses the tire against a rolling cylinder during the balancing process so the balancer can pick up both the weight balance of the tire and the stiffness variations in the sidewall. It then shows where to put the weights so that at high speed, the tire is balanced based on both the weight balance and stiffness of the sidewall.

I always have my tires road force balanced. It is just the best way to do it. Good quality tires like Michelin don't always need it. But cheaper tires like General, Goodyear, etc really do need it for a smooth ride. And cheap tires will change over time. As the tread wears, the balance will change and you have to have them re-balanced. A good quality tire will hold its balance better and longer. Many Michelins I have run will go their whole life and never need re-balanced. But I have had tires like General that need balanced every time they are rotated.

A sidewall stiffness issue is more of a highway speed issue. You are not normally going to feel a tire out of balance or a sidewall stiffness issue at low speeds. So this is something you are going to notice at 50 mph or more.

A vibration that comes and go can still be a tire balance issue, but it has to do with two or more tires being slightly out of balance such that when the out of balanced tires are in sync with each other, they will make the truck shake. But as you go around corners or change lanes, the tires will rotate so they are not in sync any more and the shake will go away or become less.

If the steering wheel shakes, that means it is the front tires that need balanced. If the seats shake, that is the rear that needs balanced. If everything shakes, they all need balanced.

Also, your tire can feel out of balance if it is out of round or has broken belts. If you rotate the tire, the tire should be very close to perfectly round and the tread should run straight as it turns. If the tire is not round, or the tread goes back and forth as you rotate it, that means your tire is defective and may have broken belts, and you need a new tire.

A bad tie rod or A-arm bushing in the front end can cause a come and go vibration that feels like a tire our of balance. So make sure those are all good too.

And last, uneven torqued lug nuts can cause the wheel to wobble and cause a vibration that feels like a tire our of balance.

One last thing, if you have a low tire pressure, you could be "flat spotting" your tires when they sit. I have had a few instances where if the tire pressure is low, and the car/truck sits over night, especially when it is cold out, that the tire has a bump bump bump when I first start to drive it. Once the tire warms up a little, it stops, but at first, it can feel a little funky. The colder the tire and the longer it sits, the more likely you are to get this. And if you let your car/truck sit for like a month, you can get this same thing when you first start to drive, but it tends to go away fairly fast once the tires rotates around a few times and gets warmed up a little.
 

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Check your alignment values. Specifically the caster settings. If they are too low, they will cause instability that mimicks bad wheel balance or other front end drive line component issues.

IDK what the current specs are for your model year are, but have the shop set them to the upper limit of the allowable range. Insufficient caster is like the front wheel on a shopping cart. May work great sometimes, and the suddenly develop a shimmy in the steering wheel.

Lots of shops will claim they cannot increase the caster without affecting the camber settings. If they say that, find another shop. It is possible, especially with Hunter alignment gear... But the tech needs to be familiar with the set up process. May be worth the effort to call around and ask pointed questions about a tundra caster adjustment.

Back in 2007, when 2nd gen arrived, there was a Hunter employee that helped nail down this issue for countless tundra owners. He actually wrote up a step-by-step procedure for techs to follow to adjust only caster. It worked. Hopefully today techs are more familiar.
 
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