You might have heard that cars designed for driving on the right side of the road will slightly pull right, whereas cars made for the left-hand side of the road will slightly pull left. However, if you are experiencing your car pulling left and the steering wheel shaking, it is often a symptom of something more severe.
If your steering wheel shakes and your car pulls significantly to the left, you could be dealing with front-wheel issues, but this might also be due to the suspension being unbalanced or the wheel alignment of the vehicle is off. You must figure out which of these issues is responsible for the car pulling to the left.
While you might argue that keeping your hands on the steering wheel will help keep the car pointing forward, the issues generally increase. Due to the increase of the shaking on the steering wheel, it becomes easy to lose control and react rather than control. We will look at a few of the main reasons your car is pulling left while you have a shaking steering wheel.
My Car Pulls Left And The Steering Wheel Shakes – Common Causes
Due to the nature of many vehicles, you might have a slight offset in wheel balance, and depending on where you are in the world, your car might veer right or left. However, a shaking steering wheel should raise the alarm bells and you might be dealing with something more severe. Here are a few possible reasons for this happening:
1. Wheel Alignment Issue/ Uneven Tire Pressure
Problem: The first issue is one of the easiest to deal with and after some time, you could find that your wheels do not sufficiently align. This could be due to various factors, including a puncture, unsafe levels of grip, or simply knocking the wheels too hard to veer them offline. You might also notice the steering wheel shaking, which is often when you force the car into a straight line.
Solution: The first thing you should do is check the tire pressure of each wheel and this will give you an indication of the balance. If the tire pressure is all right, you can go to any tire shop and have them check the wheel alignment. Keep in mind that if you have a flat spot on the tires, it could also lead to a bumpy ride and shaking of the steering wheel.
2. Worn Out Suspension
Problem: One of the less common reasons for your steering wheel shaking and your car pulling to one side has to do with the suspension. Worn-out bushing from the control arm will affect the control arm’s movement. Instead of holding it steady, the control arm might lower or move when you apply the brakes. It is also prominent when driving on an uneven surface.
Solution: In most cases, the bushing needs to be replaced and this will enable the control arm to remain steady when you are driving. Bear in mind that other suspension components might also be the main cause for the car to pull to one side. It is best to visit your mechanic and have them give the suspension an overhaul if needed.
3. Uneven Thread Patterns/ Mismatched Tire Sets
Problem: If you get a puncture while driving, chances are that you will need to fix the wheel. In the meantime, most people would rely on the spare tire to keep the car going. The problem is that the spare tire might be brand new and have more thread than the other three. This could lead to an uneven riding experience.
Solution: One of the main ways you can fix this is by replacing all four wheels to ensure the thread pattern and level match. You should have the original tire fixed as soon as possible. Keep in mind that when using two or more different tires on your vehicle, you could run into the same problem of steering and shaking issues.
4. Bent Tire Rim
Problem: If you like off-road driving, you must have the right setup. You will need a lifted suspension to clear any obstacles, while also making sure that you have off-road tires. If you hit a rock or any obstacle at speed, it could damage the rim of the tire, forcing the tire to be skewed. Essentially, the tire would move in one direction and the rim in the other.
Solution: The best solution would be to make sure that your rims are perfectly lined up. You can do this by checking the wheel weight and having the wheel balance assessed. If the rim is bent significantly, you will need to have it replaced. Driving with a bent rim could excessively wear one side of the tire and lead to even more inconsistencies.
5. Brake Issues
Problem: For your car to pull in one direction when braking, there could be plenty of reasons for this to happen. You might have a slide pin issue, a damaged brake hose, or the calipers. The calipers could lock, causing the car to veer in a different direction. These problems often arise due to worn-out brakes or rust accumulating.
Solution: Your best bet would be to have your brakes diligently checked if you notice the car pulling when braking. You might need to have the brake calipers fixed and ensure that no rust is present. It is best to ensure optimal maintenance for your vehicle. A professional mechanic should notice any problematic parts almost immediately.
Can I Drive My Car When The Steering Wheel Is Shaking?
If the steering wheel starts shaking, you should do your utmost to get to a mechanic. The mechanic would start by checking the basics. While driving is possible with a solid grip on the steering wheel, you could lose control. This could occur when pulling out of the way for an accident.
What Does It Mean When Your Car Pulls To The Left?
If you have a car that is made to drive on the left side of the road, safety reasons often dictate that it slightly pulls to the left. However, this is hardly noticeable. Uneven tires or wheel alignment are often the most common reason for your car pulling to the left.