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Hit curb left front tire/wheel - potential damages?

Discussion in 'Gen III 2010+ Prius Care, Maintenance and Troubles' started by shankyyy, Jan 29, 2014.

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  1. shankyyy

    shankyyy Member

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    Hit a curb today in icy Charlotte roads driving at ~25mph. Hub cap banged up good. Air pressure tire valve visibly extended out. I was able to drive after that though. No TPMS error. Steering pulls to left - wheel alignment screwed up for sure. More concerning is that when I reach 55-60mph, I hear a periodic humming sound ..mmmmm..mmm...mmmmm . What could be the internal damages - wheel, wheel bearings, axle, cv joint, ???

    Any reliable Prius mechanic in Charlotte area?
    Thanks.

    PS: I will try to take a picture and upload it tomorrow
  2. peterjmc

    peterjmc Ping pong in Ding Dang...

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    I've hit a curb before and it resulted in... Bent strut, damaged wheel hub, rashed wheel (not bent). I did all the work myself :) I ended up having to buy a new axle though because I failed to correctly remove the axle nut.

    If I recall correctly... the strut was about $95 and the hub/wheel bearing was $230.

    Any one elses situation could have different results. Here is the possible things that could be damaged...

    Bent wheel
    Bent tie rod
    Tweaked lower ball joint
    Bent strut
    Bent lower A arm
    Damaged wheel hub/bearings.
  3. xliderider

    xliderider Senior Member

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    I would definitely swap the front wheel with the rear wheel for now. The front is the drive/steering wheel, so you want a good, sound, undamaged wheel there.

    Then depending on whether there is any apparent damage to the impacted wheel, either mount it on the rear or mount the spare donut on the rear. Look for a bent/cracked rim or spokes when assessing the wheel for damage.

    Sent from my SCH-I535
  4. vskid3

    vskid3 Active Member

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    Its unlikely that any of the hybrid components were damaged, any competent mechanic should be able to make any repairs required.
  5. El Dobro

    El Dobro A Member

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    Don't forget to check the frame area where the control arm attaches, too.
  6. shankyyy

    shankyyy Member

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    thanks all. hoping for the best.
  7. shankyyy

    shankyyy Member

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    so, is the noise likely due to damaged wheel bearings?
  8. Grren4ever

    Grren4ever Member

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    I fear hitting the curbs when I do a right turn. The visibly is quite horrible on the Prius and it feels like the dash is so high that it is hindering my sight. Hope I don't run over a dog or kid on the sidewalk one of these days while doing a turn.

    GOod luck.
  9. shankyyy

    shankyyy Member

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    Got my car checked out today. Signs of wheel crack (see picture) and was suggested to replace wheel. Any suggestions where to buy wheels? The mechanic is going to look for one in the junk yard.
    Apparently, the wheel bearings and struts are apparently fine. If that is the case, not sure what can cause the humming sound at relatively high speeds (>50 mph)?
    Removed the bad wheel and swapped it with one from rear. Put the donut spare on the rear. Now, while driving from the shop at low speeds while accelerating, I hear a whining noise (more like a cessna jet). Can the spare tire cause this since this noise was not present prior? I checked the air pressure on the spare - it was about 50-55 psi (suggested 60 pis) Also, the humming sound still exists - so, it appears that this sound is not due to the bad wheel. If so, from where?
    Any thoughts would be appreciated.
    wheel damage.jpg
  10. peterjmc

    peterjmc Ping pong in Ding Dang...

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    Whirring noise would be from the wheel hub/bearings. I'd ask your mechanic how he determined that the hub/bearing is okay. The noise you are describing with the troubleshooting would tell me otherwise.

    Sent from my Nexus 5
  11. El Dobro

    El Dobro A Member

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    Tires can make a whirring too. The best bet to check for the noise is to use a lift.
  12. shankyyy

    shankyyy Member

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    The mechanic said he tried to shake the wheel bearing and apparently there was no play nor any sounds. He didn't see any bent struts either. Are the Prius wheel bearings different than normal cars that he may not know to diagnose?

    The one possibility he said was a bent tie rod that he said may be straightened out during alignment with a new wheel
  13. peterjmc

    peterjmc Ping pong in Ding Dang...

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    Thats what i figured his troubleshooting method was. Shaking the wheel isn't always a good indicator of a bad bearing.

    I'm not a mechanic but I've replaced a handful of bad hubs/bearings on my cars. None of my wheel assemblies had side to side play trying to shake the wheel.


    There are only a few parts that would cause the humming noise at speed. After a curb impact, the wheel hub/bearing is the most likely component if you rule out the wheel/tire.

    The tie rod is a good candidate. And would be cheaper to replace. It would throw off the alignment which could result in a hummm.

    Sent from my Nexus 5
  14. frodoz737

    frodoz737 The Mechanic

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    If you would, please verify what type mechanic/business checked your vehicle out. Hitting a curb at 25 mph, and the wheel damage they say resulted, requires more than a visual and wheel wiggle to determine all damage caused by this impact.
  15. shankyyy

    shankyyy Member

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    i guess i will first change wheel, align and check it out.

    mechanic is an import specialist - more honda experience but does others as well
  16. frodoz737

    frodoz737 The Mechanic

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    File a claim with your insurance and have this properly handled. A collision specialist is better suited to determine all damage in this situation. Even if there is no major damage, tweaking the alignment to compensate minor issues will bite you in the rear later.
    HaroldW likes this.
  17. peterjmc

    peterjmc Ping pong in Ding Dang...

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    I would not recommend filing an insurance claim. This is a very easy repair that would cost less than a standard $500 deductible and any potential insurance rates increase or good driver standing with your provider.

    Sent from my Nexus 5
  18. frodoz737

    frodoz737 The Mechanic

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    Actually you could seek a good body/chassis shop 'with the proper equipment" to give a free or low cost estimate. The problem happens when folks do not know the shops, industry practices or mechanicals themselves. I hate insurance, but that is what it is for. I personally might do things differently, but I am a mechanic and industry savvy. I do not want to mislead the inexperienced from afar on an internet forum that..."all you gota do is...". That would be ethically wrong of me in this situation.

    shankyyy you asked for opinions, but the decision is ultimately yours.
  19. shankyyy

    shankyyy Member

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    Thanks all for your feedback and opinion. For now atleast I have decided not to go through insurance - change wheels, maybe tie rod and align and hope for the best. Worst case, I hope it ends with the hub/wheel bearing assembly. Will keep you all posted.
  20. shankyyy

    shankyyy Member

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    Put a new wheel in the left front and did wheel alignment. LF Camber is 0.6 (range 0.5 to -1.0), LR Camber is -0.9 (range -2.0 to -1.0), Front Cross Camber is 1.4 (range 0.8 to -0.8), Rear Cross Camber is 0.9 (range 0.5 to -0.5). Mechanic said these are minor deviations and should be ok. He also said bearings, tie rod are all ok. Apparently, he also test drove it before handing it over to me.
    Much better drive now - the very obvious periodic hummabove 50 mph is gone. But (a) the car still steers very slightly to the right when steering is held straight (b) maybe a very mild hmm at ~33 mph and (c) dull continous hmm (or a grind) at ~60 mph. Are these due to the slight misalignment? Thoughts and potential fixes would be appreciated. I am planning to take it back to the shop but I should be prepared so I am not taken for a ride. FYI - I got the wheel changed at the Toyota dealer since the original mechanic could not find, in reasonable time, an aftermarket wheel from the junk yard. Luckily, the dealer had a 25% sale on parts; so got the new wheel for ~$300.
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