Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls

Q: My car is vibrating and shaking; is this related to the brakes and rotors?

asked by on

I have a 2001 Dodge Intrepid that is vibrating and shaking while I'm driving at speeds up to about 25 to 30 miles per hour and when braking. Pretty much feels like the tires are going to come flying off while I'm driving would this be in relation to the brakes and rotors or whatever

My car has 141000 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

A: What you’re describing may be a sign of war...

What you’re describing may be a sign of warped brake rotors. As you may know, when you press on your brake pedal, this activates a hydraulic pressure that forces small pistons inside your brake calipers to push the brake pads against the brake rotors, which is what causes the stopping power you are familiar with. When this happens, an enormous amount of heat is generated due to the friction between the brake pads and rotors. The brake rotors eventually cool down and then heat up again the next time you press on the brakes, and over time this can cause them to warp slightly resulting in very small low spots on the surface of the brake rotors. When this happens and the brake pads are applied again to the rotors, the uneven surface on the rotor is applied to the flat surface of the brake pad, which is what causes the shaking or vibrating you have described. This may be related to worn or failing wheel bearings as well. Bearing noise can sound a lot like a brake pad dragging or grinding. It can also sound like whirring, whining, or humming depending on how much sound deadening material your vehicle has in it. Bearing noise will always be dependent on vehicle speed, meaning that as you speed up or slow down, the noise should change frequency or loudness. Cornering may affect the noise from a damaged front wheel bearing, and so this type of bearing noise is usually more pronounced as you make turns. I would suggest having a professional technician, such as one from YourMechanic, take a look at your car to diagnose your shaking and vibration problem.

Was this answer helpful?

Need advice from certified mechanic? Get help now!

Over 1000 mechanics are ready to answer your question.
The statements expressed above are only for informational purposes and should be independently verified. Please see our terms of service for more details

Get an instant quote for your car

Our certified mechanics come to you ・Backed by 12-month, 12,000-mile guarantee・Fair and transparent pricing

Get a quote

What others are asking

Q: No crank 1997 Dodge RAM 1500

Hi there - your RAM pickup should not have a security-enabled key, just a standard non-security key. Your symptoms suggest that perhaps the ignition switch or "starter-limiting" relay (transmission interlock switch - Park or Neutral), may be preventing you from...

Q: Engine? New car? Greedy mechanics? What's the real deal?

Hi there: We strive to take the high road here at YourMechanic.com. Without being there to inspect your 2004 Dodge Intrepid, it would be irresponsible for us to assume what might be wrong. However, if you're looking for a fair...

Q: 2004 suzuki xl7 made screeching noise while driving that got louder when i accelerated. Then car started idling and died?

The problem sounds like you either have worn bearings or brakes. This will cause loss of power and noise would stop when vehicle is not moving. Have the front brakes and bearings checked by a mechanic like one from YourMechanic...

Related articles

What Causes Hoses to Leak?
While the largest part of your engine is mechanical, hydraulics plays a significant role. You’ll find fluids at work in a number of different areas. Your car's fluids include: Engine oil Transmission...
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...
How Much Does a Mechanic Make in Vermont?
Automotive technician jobs in Vermont have an average mechanic salary of $37k, with some mechanics earning a salary of $53k.