Updated at: 16-07-2022 - By: Lucas

When traveling on a highway, car safety is of the utmost importance. It doesn’t matter if you’re travelling solo or with your family; the integrity of your car is essential. However, wheel bearing issues are prevalent.

The first indicator of a problem with the wheel bearings is a weird noise coming from the wheels from time to time. Take the vehicle to a mechanic or perform the operation yourself if the noise persists.

Given that other considerations like the weather and the durability of other parts must be taken into account when estimating how long you can drive with a poor bearing In addition, the weight of the vehicle will have an impact on how far it can travel if the problem arises.

It is anticipated that a wheel bearing can last up to 100,000 miles. As a result, if an issue arises when the vehicle has accumulated a significant amount of miles, it will require rapid replacement.

How Long Can You Drive a Car With a Bad Wheel Bearing?

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Even if your wheel bearing has an expected lifespan of 500 miles or 800 kilometers, if you don’t know what kind of bearing you have, don’t drive more than 500 miles or 800 kilometers past the first symptom of a problem. The car will lose control if a wheel bearing fails, making driving a challenge.

Although it’s not safe to rely on these statistics because there are so many factors that might impact this distance, if you have a high-quality wheel bearing, you can drive with it for another 1000 miles or 1600 kilometers on an estimate.

Don’t wait for your automobile to stall before getting a new wheel bearing; a completely faulty bearing can cause the wheel to come loose from the vehicle, which can have significant implications.

How to drive a car with a bad wheel bearing?

If you’re experiencing bearing issues, you should keep your speed down to 50-60 km/h (40-miles per hour) at the very most; going faster increases your danger of a sudden failure. Also, avoid making sudden, hard turns, as this might cause a failing wheel bearing to seize up.

Main sings of a bad wheel bearing

Most drivers may notice an audible “humming” sound as they drive, which gets louder as the car speeds up. Other symptoms may exist.

  • Vibration in the steering wheel.
  • A failing ABS sensor.

If you see any of the warning signals listed above, it’s time to get a new bearing. For a second time, a portion of the car that connects the wheels to the vehicle endures a significant amount of stress. It is therefore imperative to replace this item as soon as possible because delaying it would either increase repair costs or decrease safety of the control.

Major Causes of Wheel Bearing Failure

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A wheel bearing won’t fail on its own; the following factors may be to blame for your vehicle’s difficulty.

Water Damage

The wheel bearings in your vehicle may wear out sooner if you drive through water on a regular basis. In addition, to keep water out of the bearings, you should get them oiled on a regular basis with petroleum-based grease.

Because the bearings do not have a seal to keep water out, this is a critical point to keep in mind when purchasing bearings. By keeping your wheel bearings oiled and steering clear of flooded streets, you can minimize the effects of water damage on your car.

Poor Driving Conditions

Potholes put a lot of stress on the bearings, resulting in early failure. Avoid driving on an uneven surface to keep your wheel bearings in good shape.

When you drive over potholes on a regular basis, you put your vehicle at risk for damage and eventual failure. Always keep in mind that a damaged wheel bearing will cause more damage to the wheel as it will be unable to reduce the friction between the various moving elements.

Unbalanced Tires

Maintaining your vehicle on a regular basis is critical to its long-term health. Every time you have your car serviced, make sure to get the tires balanced. Uneven pressure on the bearings is the result of unbalanced tires.

To put it another way, they’ll wear down more quickly and cause more damage to the tires because of this. To avoid wheel bearing issues in the future, always get your wheels balanced.


Accidents happen, and you can’t avoid them. In the event of an accident, having your car inspected to establish the extent of the damage is a good idea. Even mild collisions can cause drivers to overlook the importance of their wheels.

To be on the safe side, insist on having the bearings checked because even a small ding or crack in the bearings might cause issues. When you hear squeaking or grinding from the wheels, don’t hesitate to take action.

Improper Installation

It’s critical to fix new wheel bearings properly while installing them because they can make noises. After a recent wheel bearing repair, you may hear noises that indicate that the bearings were not properly placed.

Ensure that the correct bearings are installed and that your car is serviced by a reputable facility before it reaches 160, 000 kilometers. If the bearing makes any noise, you’ll hear it. prevent additional costs by getting it corrected right away?

Testing the wheel bearing while driving

Wheel bearings can be examined in motion for more accurate results. The following is the procedure:

  • Get the car on a road that is better to be asphalted and without potholes or imperfections
  • Accelerate to 60 km/h or 40 miles per hour, and then try to take a turn
  • Observe the car’s behavior. When entering different turns, the car body begins to roll to one side. So, when turning to the left, the car leans to the right side, and the main weight falls on the right wheel. The weight is removed from the left wheel.
  • Listen for extraneous sounds. For example, when turning to the right, the left wheel bearing will have an additional load, and you will hear a hum. Also, when driving in a straight line, the sound disappears. Using the same principle, check the bearing on the right reducing the speed to 15 km / h and making a sharp turn to the left.

Pay close attention to what you’re hearing. Wheel bearings are the most likely culprit if you hear noises throughout a turn, but they go away as soon as you exit the turn.

Final toughts

The wheel bearing is a relatively little part of the wheel assembly, but it is critical. Even while typical driving wears and tears the bearings, you must take care of them to avoid early failure. Keep an eye out for problems with your batteries and have them serviced as soon as possible.

When your car loses control, it might be unsafe for other road users, even though you can drive for 1,000 miles with damaged wheel bearings. Furthermore, faulty bearings lead to brake failure, high-speed steering wheel vibrations, and shaky wheels. Damaged bearings.