How to Know Your Truck Axles Are Bad
Unlike regular cars, which are specifically built for the daily commute and the occasional trips out of town, trucks are designed to haul cargo. This means that truck axles support much heavier loads than a standard car.
While your truck's axles are made strong and tough to carry and transport entire hauls of freight, they can wear out and cause problems for the vehicle. Fortunately, the signs of damaged or failing axles are rather easy to spot if you pay close attention to your vehicle while on the road.
Here are some typical indications of problematic truck axles.
Your truck produces a loud noise when you shift into gear
When you start your truck and shift into gear, be it drive or reverse, you expect the vehicle to start moving in the intended direction. If you hear a loud clunking noise coming from under your truck and the vehicle fails to move, this is an indication that the axles may be broken or excessively worn out and therefore, can't transmit the power of the engine into the rotational force needed to move the vehicle.
Your truck vibrates strongly
These vibrations are usually so strong that they can be felt while inside the driver's cabin. They tend to be exacerbated when accelerating, cornering, or driving over road obstacles such as potholes and speed bumps.
While other truck repair issues such as incorrect wheel alignment and steering and suspension system problems can also generate strong vibrations while driving, it's best to get your axles checked to rule them out as the cause of the problem.
Your truck can't keep straight on the road
A bent axle can cause your truck to veer off the road, compromising the safety of truckers, the cargo being hauled, and other road users. If the problem isn't corrected, it will only get worse over time.
Your truck cannot get far or anywhere with a broken axle. Remember, it is the axles that support the vehicle and rotate the wheels. A broken or damaged axle will result in a lack of spinning action because it won't pass torque to the wheels. This will force you to pull over until help arrives. This is not something you want to happen when you need to deliver time-bound freight. If you notice the signs of a looming axle breakdown, don't wait until it is too late to take corrective action — visit a truck mechanic shop immediately.