Nibble is a sign of an issue that can generally easily be resolved, but if left unchecked, could result in much greater issues down the line.
The most common cause of nibble is wheel imbalance, low tire pressure, or a damaged rim. This can be easily assessed by properly inflating and checking the tires, wheels, and wheel balance.
In more extreme cases, however, nibble could be an indicator of a damaged tire including sidewall damage, tread separation, etc. that could lead to dangerous blowout.
Other potential causes of Nibble include:
- Debris inside the tire/wheel
- Incorrectly torqued wheel nuts or lugs
- Damaged wheel bearings
- A bent axle
- Seized brakes. (Pads, caliper pins or the caliper piston)
- Alignment issues
- Collapsed CV joints
- Defective or misaligned U-joints
- Drive shaft issues
- Obstructions in the wheel area
- Worn or loose steering wheel centre nuts, or other worn steering components
If your car shows signs of nibble, we recommend that you have your tires and wheels checked, rotated, and balanced at a nearby tire shop. Shops will generally inspect your:
- Tires and tire pressure
- Wheel alignment and tire wear
- Front-end components
- Brake components
- Shocks and/or struts
The technician can then recommend what to do to resolve the nibble symptoms and bring your car back to optimal operating condition.