What Happens If Wheel Bearings Go Bad?by Marcy Andersen
Wheel bearings allow the wheels of your car to rotate. If the wheel bearings are going bad, you will often hear a groaning or grating sound as you drive down the road. You could feel a slight wobble in the steering wheel or the vehicle pulling slightly to one side.
Suspect Wheel Bearings
Bearings can go bad from wear and tear, can become dried out or are simply defective. Bearings should be round, smooth and well greased to move fluidly. If a bearing is too dry or is not perfectly round, it will inhibit the smooth rotation of the wheel. If you suspect a bad wheel bearing, have it checked right away. Sometimes bearings can be greased and repacked.
Unchecked Wheel Bearings
If a bad wheel bearing goes unchecked, the inner wheel bearing race could actually weld itself to the spindle because it gets so hot, and the wheel could seize up or come off. This can be costly and dangerous.