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Wheel Fell off - Lug Bolts Snapped off

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Old 03-28-05, 08:06 PM   #1
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Default Wheel Fell off - Lug Bolts Snapped off

Well about 2 weeks ago I started hearing a faint clicking in my front wheel, only when going strait and not bad at all. I posted a question and was told it was a wheel bearing. I went on Spring Break this last week and came back and today I came home and it was clicking real real loud, but when I put my foot on the brakes it went away so I thought it had something to do with the calipers rubbing or something like that, not sure what but something with the brakes. So I'm literally like 30 yards from my driveway when I hear this snap my car pulls to the right (Right front wheel was the culprit) and my car stalls suddenly. The whole tire had come off and when I took off the bolt covers 4 bolts fell out with half the lug bolts attached.

Now I did have one bolt without a nut on it, but I've been told by many tire people this wasn't a problem since I had a 5 lug system and I could drive forever. Hell even on my accord the guy told me the wheel woulnd't fall off but the only thing that could happen was my alignment would get off.

So anyways I proceed to put the tire back on with one bolt and pull it in my driveway VERY slowly. You try driving a clutch a .5mph...not easy.

The only thing I noticed was that the one bolt that was left seemed to move inside the holes of the bearing cover (or I assume thats what it is).

I plan on at least reaplcing the 5 bolts and driving it to the local auto repair shop.

Does anybody have ANY insight on this problem or why this would happen, or what acould be wrong.

I'm just glad I wasn't pulling 80mph on the interstate when this happened.
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Old 03-28-05, 08:34 PM   #2
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As soon as you lose one you may as well assume that youre going to lose the rest of them, especially on a car as big and heavy as the SC. Probably one went out, or one got loose enough to stress the others to the point where they broke. Consider yourself lucky that you werent going that fast and didnt have alot of damage. Ive seen it when a tire comes off at a high rate of speed...not good for the pavement or the car
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Old 03-28-05, 08:38 PM   #3
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So do you think it could have been because I didn't have one of those bolts on, or is it somethin inside the wheel that is shifting and causing the bolts to snap off. I should have looked to see if the bolts were tight before, and I think I did but on the other wheel because I counld't tell from what side it was coming from when it first happened.
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Old 03-28-05, 10:49 PM   #4
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Well, they arent really bolts, but studs. Theyre just keyed so that when you put it in, it doesnt move. Ive driven two different cars that had the wheel studs broken off of them with not problems, but those were very small and lightweight hatchbacks, not a two-ton Toyota coupe. Having one of the studs broken off probably played a part in the others, but i have seen all four sheer off when they were all on. The lug nuts could have been on too tight or maybe too loose...theres alot of seperate factors to take into account and its probably not going to be easy to point the finger at just one.
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Old 03-29-05, 03:12 AM   #5
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Dude, I don't care what some jacka$$ told you. NEVER drive extended periods of time on anything less than the full amount of lugs and studs. This MOST LIKELY was the culprit. Good for you that you weren't driving fast or on the highway. I'm just glad that you and the car are OK. Good luck with it.
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Old 03-29-05, 05:48 AM   #6
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Okay. The only thing that worries me that it was something else is that the wheel studs seemed to move inside of the holes they came out of, like theres about 3mm of shifting either way. I'm going to take off the other front wheel and see if it does it also.

If it doesn't I'll try to take a video of it and maybe somebody can tell me why, but I'll let you guys how it goes later today when I start to work on it.

I hope autozone has the wheel studs (thats what I meant to say!), because I know they don't have many other Lexus parts.
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Old 03-29-05, 07:18 AM   #7
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well i drove with 4 lugs in the passenger side rear for 2500 miles from califonia to alabama. nothing happened drove 80+ all the way. but this is not something to be proud of. im just lazy to fix it.
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Old 03-29-05, 05:12 PM   #8
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I think what ended up happening was a combination of only 4 bolts on, along with the nutsnot being tight enough, along with the tire shop putting on one nut not being the same as the others (not as big of a lip around it). In the end I just replaced the studs and I drove it around the neighborhood and retightened them again, seems to be 100% now...and no clicking
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Old 03-29-05, 07:04 PM   #9
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I honestly dont know why you guys would drive your cars this long without one of your lug nuts on. Is it really that hard to drop by the Toyota dealership and pick one up?
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Old 03-29-05, 07:11 PM   #10
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Well first of all I thought I did have all 5 on there otherwise I only would have driven until I went by a place to get one. But now that I put the pieces togehter I remember I was 1 short on that wheel after one of the locking nuts stripped beyond repair and I was scared it would never come off. Thats really the only reason why I drove on it like that, otherwise I would have picked one up.
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Old 03-29-05, 07:34 PM   #11
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Glad to hear that everything is OK now. I was thinking today how bad it COULD have been if you were driving on a busy highway doing 80.
Made me shiver!
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Old 03-29-05, 09:16 PM   #12
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The same thing happened to a guy here in Australia - the problem was that he had aftermarket wheels but didn't have spigot rings fitted in the wheels. When you get aftermarket wheels they have a big centre hole to fit over any size spigot (that lip that sticks out in the middle of the hub) but then you need to fit the right size ring in the wheel to match the spigot size for your car which is 60mm for the SC/Soarer. The wheels studs/nuts are to hold the wheel to the hub, not take the weight of the car as well.

Might not the the same in your situation but worth checking. Have a read of this about halfway down if you want more info...

http://www.planetsoarer.com/offset/offset.htm
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Old 03-30-05, 02:09 PM   #13
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what probably happed was fatigue failure on the nuts. missing one nut is alright if you are dirivng straight all the time, but if you are cornering and even more so when you are doing it fast, you are putting lateral forces on the wheel (and thats a heavy car) when the wheel rotates to the point where the nut is missing, it puts torque on the other nuts. then your other nuts will bentd due to cold working of the steel and when you drive straight, you get that clicking sound. this is an added stress and fatigue failure is poportional to stress times number of loadings. (exponential decay graph). no matter how many kms you have driven or been told to be able to drive, eventually it will fail and earlier than with all nuts on. the guy giving you advice has no clue your driving style and route. any car would do fine with four nuts even this lexus but only if the nuts were equally spaced unlike your scenario where they were not.
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Old 03-31-05, 11:01 PM   #14
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what could have happend is that who ever put your wheels on last saw it was missing a lug nut so they way over torqued your other 4 to keep it on, and when you over tourqe a stud its just like over torquing a screw or nut, it become weak and brakes. They could have all been to the point in which they where about to break and the heat from all the driving weakend them even more, pushed it over the edge and snaped. Just a thought.

Let me tell you from experience (7 years working in shops and ASE certified), missing a single lug nut will not cause this to happen.
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Old 04-03-05, 12:34 AM   #15
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id almost bet that the lugs werent tightened all the way or werent torqued enough and came loose causing the clicking sound you heard which was probably the rotor rubbing unevenly on the pads because it was loose, then too much stress eventually caused the studs to snap, i had this happen to me on my 240sx while i was en route to chicago for the rsr drift festival last fall, i also figured it was just a worn brake pad or something, word to the wise, make sure your lugs are properly torqued if you hear strange clicking noises or vibrations from your wheels!
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Old 04-03-05, 12:34 AM
 
 
 
 
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