Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls
  1. Home
  2. Articles
  3. How Long Does a Steering Damper Last?

How Long Does a Steering Damper Last?

Steering Damper

Most of us are used to being able to enjoy smooth, precise movement when we turn the steering wheel in our vehicle. That is made possible by a combination of different components, including the splines that mate the steering column to the intermediate shaft, the universal joint for the steering wheel, and the steering damper.

A steering damper is really nothing more than a stabilizer designed to reduce or eliminate unwanted movement (called wobble in some circles). Wobble in the steering wheel makes handling much less precise and can cause dangerous situations. However, you generally only find these in larger trucks and SUVs, particularly those with larger tires.

Larger tires create a wobble or shimmy in the vehicle. It affects not only your handling, but pretty much every component from the shocks and struts to the wheel bearings and even the exhaust. Too much vibration will eventually damage anything.

The steering damper also provides a defense against arm and hand fatigue. If left unchecked, the vibration from tire/road contact would travel up the steering column to your arms, and the force required to hold the wheel steady would be significantly greater. The steering damper works to reduce those vibrations and eliminate arm fatigue.

While you will still be able to drive if your steering damper begins to fail, you’ll find the experience less than ideal. Watch for the following symptoms to indicate that you may have a problem with the damper:

  • Much more road vibration felt than usual (this may also indicate a broken belt in a tire)
  • Steering wheel doesn’t turn all the way
  • Clunking noise when turning the wheel
  • Steering wheel feels like it binds intermittently

If you’re experiencing any symptoms related to a failing steering damper, it may be time to get checked it checked. A certified mechanic can come inspect the system and have your steering damper replaced if necessary.

The statements expressed above are only for informational purposes and should be independently verified. Please see our terms of service for more details
Icon-warranty_badge-02

Skip the repair shop, our top-rated mechanics come to you.

At your home or office

Choose from 600+ repair, maintenance & diagnostic services. Our top-rated mechanics bring all parts & tools to your location.

Fair & transparent pricing

See labor & parts costs upfront, so you can book with confidence.

12-month, 12,000-mile warranty

Our services are backed by a 12-month, 12,000-mile warranty for your peace of mind.

Get A Quote

Need Help With Your Car?

Our certified mobile mechanics make house calls in over 2,000 U.S. cities. Fast, free online quotes for your car repair.

GET A QUOTE

More related articles

P0121 OBD-II Trouble Code: TPS "A" Circuit Range Performance Problem
P0121 code definition Throttle Pedal Position Sensor/Switch (TPS) A Circuit Range Performance Problem...
The Traveler’s Guide to Driving in Malaysia
CraigBurrows / Shutterstock.com Malaysia is a popular destination for many tourists today. The country has amazing sights and attractions that you will want to explore....
How to Avoid Back Pain in a Car
If you have back problems, sitting in a car for an extended period of time can be excruciating. Even without back problems, you could experience discomfort and soreness from...


Related questions

Q: when placing gear shifter in reverse I hear a pop/knock.

Hello. A popping / clunking noise when moving in reverse can be caused by many things. Two of the most common causes for those symptoms are worn axles or motor mounts. The axles are the joints that transmit power from...

Q: Loose Steering? 2012 GMC Sierra 1500

Hey there. I would suggest having the inner and outer tie rods checked for looseness and replaced if any play is found. When checking the rack and pinion mounts and bushings there should also be no looseness. The steering's free...

Q: clunking noise on front wheel

You may have a worn out or damaged CV axle shaft which is commonly known to produce a clunking or clicking and popping sound when they fail. A CV (Constant Velocity) joint is a shaft that connects the transmission to...