Howling Front Wheel

Discussion in 'Touring Models' started by oiler, Oct 10, 2011.

  1. oiler

    oiler Active Member

    I have developed a howling sound which appears to becoming from the front wheel. It only does it while cruising in the bends of the road. Quiet while going straight but as soon as I lean slightly left or right in the bend it starts then goes quiet again when going straight. Would this be the front wheel bearing or the treads in the tires?
  2. oiler

    oiler Active Member

    Forgot to mention that I have a 2009 SG and I did get the front 407 Dunlop tire upgraided to the 408 - last year.
  3. Hoople

    Hoople Account Removed

    Certainly can be the bearing(s). Those bearings went bad on my 2009 with only 10K miles on the bike. Sticks out like a sore thumb using a mechanic stethoscope with wheel off the ground.
  4. kemo

    kemo R.I.P

    The bearings will make more noise when you are in a bend. Raise the front wheel off the ground and see if you can feel any play in the wheel when you grab top and bottom and wiggle it. Also spin the wheel and listen for a noise.
  5. FerrousBueller

    FerrousBueller Junior Member

    I have a similar problem with the back end of my '09 FXSTC. It seems to be tread noise that I didn't notice before.

    I tried all the suggestions already mentioned with no luck.

    Check your tire pressure when tires are cold and retest/listen for changes in howling noise.
  6. Subby

    Subby Active Member

    It could be the bearings but I'd be more inclined to suspect that your tire has started to cup. I too have the 408 on my Ultra and it has started to develop a bit of a howl in corners. It doesn't take much cupping for the tire to start to make noise. Run your hand along the surface/edge of the tire and see if you can feel any slight waviness. Like I said, it doesn't take much and you might not even be able to feel it yet.
  7. Bgdv1

    Bgdv1 Member

    my 11 SG does it also and its getting louder. i only have 5800 on the factory dunlops. doesnt seem to be bearings .
  8. Jack Klarich

    Jack Klarich Expert Member

    If you raise the wheel off the ground as you spin it put your hand on the front legs if the bearing is bad you will feel the vibration this is a dead give away the bearing has gone south, remember they do not have to have play to be bad:s
  9. oiler

    oiler Active Member

    Tire psi is OK. I checked for cupping and I don't feel anything - all smooth. Only 6000 miles (10000 km's) on the 408 Dunlop. I put it up on the jack and the bearings seem to be fine. Going to the dealer tomorrow and have the tech take out for a ride to see what he thinks.

    I just took the bike off the jack before I read your post. Well, I will see what the teck says tomorrow and if he can't give me a definite answer I will check the bearings using your method. Thanks.
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 10, 2011
  10. R_W_B

    R_W_B Senior Member

    Well I would think it has to be either the tire or the bearings. It is only on long sweeping curves or short slower curves or both. How fast are you going when it howls?

    Does it only do it on full moon ? (just kidding)