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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello everyone!
I just bought a 2018 Elantra Sport Manual and during the drive home, I noticed a vibration in the steering wheel and seat above 60mph. Depressing the clutch does not change the vibration. It has persisted past 250 miles/a few days of driving on the highway and in the city.

I brought it back to the dealer, and they checked the balance on all 4 wheels and found nothing wrong. The tech then suggested that since this particular unit sat on the lot for a while (a few months, according to their records), it could have some flat spotting (which I do not believe, because the problem persisted after 250 miles of city and highway driving). They have it now, and I'm in a rental, so they are at least willing to look at it. I'm hoping that they put new tires on to definitively say whether this is a wheel/tire issue vs. a more serious issue further up the drivetrain.

Does anyone have any other suggestions as to what could be causing this? If the dealer plays hardball, are there any other resources that I could go to? I looked at Hyundai Motor America's customer service page, and am willing to file with them; however, the reviews of their corporate customer service have not been very good...Thanks!
 

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Ask the dealer if they actually did road force balancing on your car. It's likely that there is some significant variation in stiffness of the tire's sidewall aggravated by the car sitting for months.

BTW, welcome and congrats!
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks! The tech used some weird word like "spline" or something to describe what part of the tire was affected by the car sitting for so long, so perhaps "significant variation in stiffness of the tire's sidewall" was the concept he was trying to convey. That is a good suggestion; I will ask them specifically what type of balancing they are able to perform in their shop.
 

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Brand new cars are usually over inflated at the plant to avoid flat spotting in transit and on the dealer lot. They are not supposed to put the tire pressure down to recommended (33 psi) until you purchase the car. If they did it before, flat spotting and damage to the tires could result if it was sitting for months.
 

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They are not supposed to put the tire pressure down to recommended (33 psi) until you purchase the car. If they did it before, flat spotting and damage to the tires could result if it was sitting for months.
Actually, during the PDI process they’re supposed to be set +2psi from the recommended pressures given on the door jam.

To the OP:
The tires are flat spotted, sometimes if they aren’t too bad you they’ll work themselves out but more times than not it’ll need a set of tires which is why the dealer will try everything they can to not end up eating 4 tires. The sales department is supposed to monthly checks on the cars and move them forward and back to prevent flat spots on older units but sometimes they don’t and your car is the result.

I just picked up an 18 this past Friday and it had terrible brake pulsations. The front rotors had 2 low spots on each side, fortunately I’m a tech so I just wrote a repair order on it and paid myself to machine the rotors haha

At the end of the day, the car is brand new, your service department knows the issue (it’s dealt with more than they’d like to admit) but again they try to exhaust all options before putting tires on it and handing the bill to the sales department. Just keep complaining and they’ll put tires on it
 

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Also, if you haven’t ask already, have the tires Road Force Balanced. A “regular” balance only checks for imbalance while a Road Force Balance places a roller wheel against the tread of the tire, applies pressure and measure the resistance (in lbs or kg) given from any dips in the tread. Then ask what the values were, a normal passenger car tire should be in the single digits to low low teens while a flat spotted tire will probably put you in the 30lb range which is way too high to be corrected. Sometimes you can do what’s called a Force Match and spin the tire on the rim into a new location to combat the high road force value
 

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This is good to know, I've only ever heard tires get balanced and nothing else. Assuming there's no additional cost to getting tires Road Force Balanced, you may as well go for that.
 

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This is good to know, I've only ever heard tires get balanced and nothing else. Assuming there's no additional cost to getting tires Road Force Balanced, you may as well go for that.
You usually have to ask for it, since it's a bit more work.
 

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Flat-spotting could be it, but I've had this issue when wheel lugs are not properly torqued as well. Perhaps not as likely as flat-spotting in you case, as you have had the dealer remove and re-install you wheels, but easy enough to check if you have a torque wrench. Correct torque value should be in the owner's manual.
 
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