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Old 04-24-2015, 02:27 PM   #29
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I agree with the post above, add some caster, caster is what makes the wheels stay straight when going forward. Trail is the term applied to a single wheel as in a motorcycle that keeps the wheel going straight. Too little trail and you,re in for death wobble. In terms of something you can see, go to the grocery store and look at a front wheel on a cart. The caster wheel that pivots to make turns has a pivot point where it can rotate round in any direction. A line straight down to the floor will mark the pivot point. Draw another straight line down to the floor through the wheel axle and you will find it is about 1" behind where the pivot point hit the floor. So in this case there is a 1" trail. Motorcycles operate well with 4 to 6 inches of trail. When you hook two wheels together with steering linkage, all the same principals apply and it is called caster. Some more caster will help reduce the chances of steering wobble. Lop sided tires can also aggrevate the problem. I've seen tires in past years that actually would wobble the rear end of a car when it was going down the street at a slower speed although I think that is less of a problem in today's tires. The other thing that will allow this to happen is the looseness in all the combined hitch connections. The looser all the pivot points are in tow bar assembly, the more opportunity the car has to move right and left while it is being towed.
You had your vehicle alignment set to specs, but add some more positive caster. The mfg. specs didn't include the idea of it being a towed vehicle. Take it up to the max or even add another degree or two, it won't affect your tire wear, only bad camber and/or bad toe will increase tire wear. It will steer a little harder but with power steering, you won't notice.
I just got my f53 chassis properly aligned and I took 2* of caster out of it! it was way high and I can feel the difference even with the power steering.
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Old 04-25-2015, 09:20 AM   #30
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The geometry you describe (well) makes great sense. The alignment done by the dealer actually REDUCED the caster (by a small portion of a degree), although it added toe. If the Jeep still has the problem next trip, I will get the caster increased while on the trip and see if that does it. I also hope the new tow bar, which does have less play, may help. Thanks a lot for the input.
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Old 07-17-2015, 01:01 PM   #31
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Just experienced this condition two days ago while traveling north on 101 in Oregon. Some of the repairs on the road have left bumps in the road which seem to have initiated the wobble condition. Stopping was the only way to stop it. Am towing a 2014 Jeep Cheorkee with which we had no problems in the first 1500 miles getting to where we are now. I have 11,000 on the car so will rotate and align tires while in Portland an see if it happens again on the way home to Colorado.
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Old 07-17-2015, 04:14 PM   #32
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Update

I still receive more reports from others who have experienced this problem. I reported it to the NHTSA and encourage others to do the same. I just started our summer trip but this year will be short - only about 2K miles. No problem in the first 700. When I complained to Jeep about the problem their reply was "OH? We've never had anyone else complain..." They did a realignment. Whopee!
I replaced the tow bar (mine was 20 years and 200K miles old) and have new tires on it. Hope it helps, but I have little confidence. I believe only an increasing number of complaints will do the trick. Or the NHTSA getting into the problem. God forbid someone has an accident caused by this - but if there were one Jeep better be aware a lawyer will get hold of this thread and have a field day.

Please keep the reports coming. Thanks
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Old 07-17-2015, 04:19 PM   #33
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My 2009 Wrangler was having some early signs of the dreaded "death wobble" a few months ago (towed successfully for ~3 years, and had severe front tire wear on the passenger side only. I never felt it from inside the DP, but I solved it by (1) new tires on the jeep, (2) front end alignment, (3) new steering stabilizer "shock" looking part.
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Old 07-20-2015, 08:52 AM   #34
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How many reports ?
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Old 07-20-2015, 04:15 PM   #35
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I think five, but the info is at home so I'm not sure (maybe six).
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Old 07-21-2015, 06:06 PM   #36
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2014 jeep steering problems

We are on our first trip with our 2014 jeep cherokee and have had the same problem. It has happened to us three times. The first time I thought the jeep was going to roll over before I could get it stopped. After calling 5 dealers, 4 would not even look at it, one agreed to look at it but would not be able to do anything without seeing it happen. As with yours,there is nothing wrong with the hitch or RV. We think it is because the electric steering has no mechanical damping, under some conditions the wheels can not find center. I have had two conversations with roadmaster and they are hearing reports about this problem.
I have had a number of conversation with jeep customer services and dealers and the only suggestion so far is leave the jeep running as we tow it!!
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Old 07-31-2015, 03:45 PM   #37
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I have had the problem at least 6 times on my 2008 Chev HHR. First time when crossing rr tracks which were at about a 30 angle to the roadway. Several other times when going over uneven pavement.

One thing that may be contributing to my experience is the drop between the hitch receiver and the toad. It's about 5 inches but I may not have measured it properly. I think it's too much. The place that does my hitch work says it's within spec. The Blue Ox manual says no more than 4 inches.

Alignment may also be part of the problems. I've replaced my tires about 6 months ago. Have put maybe 10,000 miles since. Half while towing. Front tires are wearing badly. Tread depth on front less than half of rear. If I can get it into a dealer I'll have them check alignment and front suspension which may have been damaged from wobble.
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Old 08-29-2015, 12:04 PM   #38
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This is a serious problem and coordinated effort will be required to get action out of either the NHTSA or Chrysler. I would urge all who have experienced this to contact Chrysler and NHTSA. I have sixteen reports of this problem so far and Chrysler needs to address it... there is a great video of this occurring but I can't upload it here as it is in MP4. I will send an email to all I know of to try to get us on a common email list so we can better coordinate. Better yet please send me a private message here with your email address. Thanks, Bruce
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Old 08-29-2015, 02:45 PM   #39
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Three people only on here have report a problem - many of us have had not problems - still seems to me that you are the only ones have problems and hundreds of the Cherokees are being towed with no issues
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Old 08-30-2015, 04:58 AM   #40
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Jeep Cherokee

I have a 2014 Jeep Cherokee Trailhawk, V6, tows great, this is the first I've heard of the "death wobble". I have a Roadmaster stowmaster, that thing weighs a ton by itself. My hitch is lined up properly. I keep, as it were, a step by step check list in the center console on how to disengadge it for towing and how to put it back for driving.
I had a 2000 Jeep Wrangler before getting the Trailhawk and it towed great. Hope you find the problem.
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Old 08-30-2015, 05:19 AM   #41
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Twoflyrodders View Post
This is a serious problem and coordinated effort will be required to get action out of either the NHTSA or Chrysler. I would urge all who have experienced this to contact Chrysler and NHTSA. I have sixteen reports of this problem so far and Chrysler needs to address it... there is a great video of this occurring but I can't upload it here as it is in MP4. I will send an email to all I know of to try to get us on a common email list so we can better coordinate. Better yet please send me a private message here with your email address. Thanks, Bruce

When I owned a Geo Tracker I had this problem. It was solved with installation of an aftermarket steering stabilizer. My problem would usually start after exiting a gas station with a drop at the roadway/curb and a turn.
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Old 08-31-2015, 02:27 PM   #42
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Another Cherokee owner with this problem obtained this video and said it was ok to post it. Find it on Youtube at https://youtu.be/UNmkr4dL1OE
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