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Car shakes when braking even with new rotors and pads


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The car is a 1997 Honda Civix EX


Ok, so I bought this car cheap which had been in a 'fender bender' on the passenger side corner. It seems like just the bumper, grill and right headlight had taken damage. Bumper was replaced fender was bent a little from forward force so I bent it back and looks pretty ok now.


Anyway the car shakes when braking past 40 mpg. So I put new shoes on the back and rotors and pads on the front. I did a short bed in process driving normally then braking but not to complete stop and repeat basically. That's my first time attempting a bed in.


Took it out for a test and it still shakes and it also pulls to the left when braking hard. It kind of pulls to the left and then straights out as the car stops. It has ABS. It seems like the pull to the left has kind of evened out as I took it out.


It also makes an occasional clicking noise when turning right. I doesn't however keep clicking if you keep turning right. So basically if you put come up to to a stop sign and turn right there is this occasional clunk or click noise from the passenger side tire. However if you go to a parking lots and just do circles turning the right it does not make any noise, at least not yet.


The steering seems fine and it doesn't vibrate unless you're braking even at 70+


So what's a list of most likely culprits ? rack end bushing ? wheel bearing in that order? Anything else that might be causing this maybe caused by this front right impact ? I know it could be lots of things, but if possible I'll be doing the work myself and most of the parts aren't expensive just annoying to replace one at a time with no real clue what the cause is. Plus I'm trying to get this thing inspected and road worthy by August 8th or before.


Also while I'm at it the car has decided to start something new and it revs up and back down when in park or neutral with the AC off. With the AC on or in any gear it does not do this. Is this a coolant sensor or vacuum leak? This is my first car with decent computer diagnostics. What a good place or tool to get these codes? I also just put on a new exhaust system from the catalytic converter back, reused the old cat but I had to take it off to get it apart because the heat shield blocked one of the bolts and was corroded to hell from 140k miles and first exhaust change. I made sure to plug up the sensor and all but I didn't know if that could be some root cause of this revving problem. Really hasn't been a good day, put in like 8 hours of work on this car and all I did was get the exhaust leak fixed.




Edited by moejama
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Few things: most auto parts stores will do a basic check engine diagnostic code scan for free. if the CEL is on take it in.


the clicking: if it is a regularly repeating click I would say half shaft (axle) or wheel bearing. If it is one singular (or so) click good bet it's the tie rod, especially since it has been in a accident. at 140k it is a good bet you should do both inner and outer rods. simple obvious test for tie rods is to take some weight off that corner and see if the wheel has a horizontal wiggle. if it jiggles back and forth and isn't moving the steering wheel you most likely have a bad tie rod end.


idle bouncing is often a cause of a faulty TPS sensor. sometimes cleaning it out can delay the inevitable. always a good first check any time you get bouncing. if you somehow broke a O2 sensor when doing the exhaust it might also be causing this issue.


get an alignment and wheel balancing. that could be the biggest part of the shaking, but don't waste time getting an alignment before you do the tie rods (if needed)

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I rotated the tires and unstuck the caliper pin rubber boot thing that the top caliper bolt goes into and the pulling stopped but it still shakes. Could this just be unbalanced tires ? It doesn't shake at 70 and I though think it would if it were just the tires. I checked the tie rods and they seem fine but the clunking on turns seems to be quickly getting worse I'm thinking it's the half shaft. I guess I should replace both at once .. ug sounds like a job for the shop.


As far as the revving up and down.. it's fixed ! I revved the it up to 7k rpm and held it there a little and it smoked off the stickers on the mufflers and got the exhaust system nice and hot and POOF it stopped the revving up and down problem. I'm guessing it was an oxygen sensor with deposits on it or something ?


Of course all the success didn't come without problems.. also found the radiator has about a 1 1/2 inch very thin crack on it where coolant just barely seeps through... so I guess I'll have to replace that too.

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stop leak. works wonder for small seeps.


Don't assume it is the shafts unless the noise you hear is a repeating/rhythmic sound. my half shaft had a bad cv joint on it and it made a noticeable rhythmic pulsating sound that varied in pitch and speed depending on how fast I was driving. not every bad shaft will do that, but it is a common symptom


Singular or irregular clunks are the domain of tie rod ends, bushings, and much less common, ball joints. the tire wiggle trick will pick up on severely bad tie rods but not minor ones.


not unusual for alignment or tire balance issues to come and go depending on the speed you are traveling. just cause it goes away at 70 doesn't mean that's not the problem.

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