18-wheelers and other heavy-duty commercial vehicles require hefty axles in order to mitigate the strain of such intense torque. Light-duty axles on a heavy-duty rig would likely snap, as the force they’d be under would be nearly unfathomable. Your axles are the last step in your drive train. Once power is diverted through your differential, it is then sent to your axles. Your axles will then spin your wheels, therefore setting your vehicle in motion.
Over time these axles tend to break down. Whether through age, use, or exposure to the elements, axles need to be serviced on a routine basis. Here at Integrity Fleet Services, we consider ourselves to be axle experts. Our technicians are highly skilled and well-equipped to handle any and all axle problems that come their way. Call us today to see what we can do for you. Below you will find a list of common issues that may point to an axle problem.
Symptoms of Axle Damage
Steering Bias and Response
If your 18-wheeler is pulling to the left or the right while your steering wheel is straight, chances are you have a damaged drive axle. The pulling means one side is getting more power than the other, and may even indicate that one side is not getting any power at all. This symptom typically goes hand in hand with a lack of steering response. Damaged axles may reduce the effectiveness of your steering system. This is a major issue that puts you and everyone else on the road in danger
If your wheel hubs are giving off a lot of heat, chances are there’s something damaged within them. Axles that are broken or warped will create a lot of friction when spinning. Friction means too much heat, and too much heat may lead to wheels falling off. This heat will also typically be accompanied by significant noise and vibration coming from the axle in question.
What About Non-Drive Axles?
Wheels that don’t receive power don’t have drive axles, but they do have bearings that sit on a non-powered axle. These bearings wear out over time and need to be replaced regularly.