Identifying Problems with Mazda Miata Wheel Hub Assembly
Perhaps the most important part of any vehicle is the wheel. Without wheels, the vehicle just would not run or even move an inch. The wheel hub assembly is found at the center of the wheels and plays an essential role in the movement of the wheels. It contains the bearings that are responsible for the smooth and quiet turning of the wheels. Most problems with the wheel hub assembly arise from faulty wheel bearings. Failure to function properly may cause severe accidents. Here are a few tips on how to identify any problems you may have on your Mazda Miata wheel hub assembly:
Grinding, whining, squealing sound
Wheel bearings are found inside the wheel hub assembly and are the ones responsible for carrying the weight of the vehicle. When you hear grinding, whining, and squealing noises coming from the back of your vehicle while driving, there is certainly something wrong with your wheel bearings. The noise usually starts at slow speeds and grows even louder as you accelerate, so it is quite impossible to miss. A grave result of driving with this is having the wheel come off. Surely, you don't want this to happen to you.
Loose and rough suspension
Another way to tell if you have bad wheel bearings is when you feel roughness while driving. When the wheel bearings go bad, they become pitted and rough. This negatively affects the vehicle ride quality, disturbing the spinning motion of the tires.
Excessive tire play
To confirm the defective wheel bearings, check the rear tires one at a time for play. Jack up the car and support the axles with jack stands. Then, placing one hand on top of the tire and the other at the bottom, wiggle it up and down. Do the same with the other rear wheel. If there is any play while doing this test, your Mazda Miata wheel hub assembly needs to be replaced.
Excessive tire vibration
When wheel bearings go bad, they lose their ability to effectively spin the wheels noiselessly against the rotating tire hub assembly. Since the bearings are already pitted and rough, they cause a lot of vibration throughout the drive. Driving with such can result in a difficulty in controlling or maneuvering.