Yet another reason to get a dash cam and not to ignore signs of impending equipment failure.

You’d think driving on the neatly paved freeways in Utah would be a mostly uneventful affair, but such was not the case for one Redditor.

Reddit user /u/thebearededtravelerPH shared dash cam footage of a Dodge Ram losing its wheel and tire, narrowly avoiding a more serious accident, as he drove on I-15 in Draper Utah (just south of Salt Lake.)

Check out the near miss for your self below.

If you’re curious where this all exactly went down, url of that portion of the freeway on Google Maps is linked here.

In the first half of the video we can see /u/thebearededtravelerPH driving along I-15, aware of a driver in a Dodge Ram in the fast lane with a front wheel that doesn’t look quite right.

“Oh, he’s going to get in front of us,” we can hear /u/thebearededtravelerPH say. “It’s riding on like (the hub.) Oh my God. We gotta get over and around. Yeah, look at that tire!

We can see the Dodge Ram’s driver’s side front wheel angled to one side.

Clearly, something is broken and, about to fail.

As Redditor OhSillyDays astutely surmises, “This looks like a case of a bearing that made noise, was ignored, failed, it rubbed, and then heated up due to metal on metal friction. It hen heated the axle so hit that it broke.”

As proof of that, this screenshot clearly shows something up front got way too hot for normal operating conditions.

Whatever that is, it shouldn’t be glowing red hot!

When asked why he didn’t pass on the right, he replied, “Yes, hindsight is 20-20. Had I known it was going to fly off when it did, I’d have passed on the right.”

You can hear the wheel and tire make contact with his vehicle but, absence of any comment saying he got into a serious accident and the fact that he continued to drive straight leads me to believe, perhaps, only some negligible body damage occurred.

How to know when you need to replace your own wheel bearings

If you’ve made it this far, it’s probably worth blogging about how to know when your own wheel bearings need replacing.

Wheel bearings should theoretically last for the lifetime of your vehicle but, what’s engineered for a lifetime often doesn’t last that long.

KBB has a great post worth a read (linked here) but, basically if you hear, “Humming, squeaking, and clicking sounds (from your wheel,) these are the alerting sounds that your wheel bearings are bad.”

I also found a great suggestion from Redditor Mikey3800 on /r/MechanicAdvice who suggested,

“Lift the vehicle in the air and spin the wheel as fast as you can while holding on to the coil spring. If you feel vibration in the spring, the wheel bearing is no good. This really only works on non-drive wheels and, of course, cars that have coil springs. I have found it to be a helpful way to locate bad wheel bearings, though.”

It was suggested that, even for the drive wheels, you can put the car in N (or neutral) to spin the wheels fast enough to hear any sounds (if any.)


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