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Discussion Starter #1
...so I have been running 205/50/16 Dunlop sp5000's since last spring. Pretty wide tire, I think, but really nice feel at speed in the mountains, plus looks great, fills the wheel well nicely. Rotate them every 2500mi to keep the wear even.

Seems that this this summer, I notice the tramline effect on the local roads a lot more than last year (need to "fight" the wheel a bit on local highways that are 'tracked" from heavy commuter traffic).

A month ago I started hearing a slight Power Steering pump whine (like you hear when the wheel is turned full-lock) on really slow speed turns (turning into my driveway, backing out of the garage). PS fluid level was fine. Noise is more noticeable now.

Went in for my 40Kmi service on Monday, tech says its the tie rod ends. I'm gsetting a new spring/shock kit in a week or so so I'll wait till then to fix the tie rods (just align it once).

Sooooo...
What is the probability that the extra width of these tires (and associated power needed to turn them at low speed) would be the cause of wear on the Tie Rods (ahead of any other steering/suspension components)?

Is 40Kmi all I should expect out of Tie Rods?

...Can't wait for the Control Arms to start creaking :mad:

Thanks for advice.
 

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Discussion Starter #2
shameless bump :roll:
 

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I had that same noise also. My tie rods were loose and I had them replaced. The only difference is my car has 85K miles on it. But it has probably needed them for about 15K. My tires are 225's, so as far as wheel width causing it, I don't know. What I do know is that many people have had to replace these and there was even a recall on some years. After replacing them my car is much more solid.
 

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Yeah. Its very possible that its your wider tires causing premature failure. Well, first and foremost, it's VWs engineering problem that caused the failure, not the tires in itself. If the car can't handle 225s, there's an engineering flaw IMHO. ANYWAYS!

Increasing your tire width causes something known as increased camber thrust. Basically, when you're driving straight, you have X amount of static camber. Now, start cornering, and your have more negative camber (known as dynamic camber). If the road surface isn't smooth and has bumps, you'll induce even more negative camber. And if the tire is wider, more force is put into the suspension, and causes you to (a) have less control, and (b) put additional stress on the suspension components.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Stealt - thanks for the explanation. My original post states 205 width - I'm actually running 225s :roll:

In searching the forums, Tie-Rod ends don't appear to be a major issue, and plenty of B5ers run with aggressive tire/wheel setups. Maybe I just got "lucky". Hmmmmm...
 

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re: tramlining

its a big topic with me. I strongly dislike the feel of a car that is being pulled one way and then another and having to constantly battle with it to keep it going the way the steering wheel is pointed.

I started out, new, with the stock oem tires. was ok, I guess. nothing great. not long after, I wanted to go +1 on tire size (didn't want to change the rims yet) and I tried the S03 pole position tires. it was on a 'ride guarantee' so I had nothing to lose in trying them out even though I was skeptical. they really were sticky as hell - really great cornering! but they tramlined like crazy and felt heavy. just like more weight - and with a mind of its own - was added up front. but they DID stick very very well in curves, that part of them was quite fun.

I ended up going back to a known quantity. the yoko avs sport. look it up, you'll see there's really no center rib and no radial lines on the tire. its all slanted tire/void ribs. nothing to -follow- the road with (except the 2 natural edges of the tire). taking the S03's off and putting the avs sports on all but totally cured the tramlining.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
You know, the ride is great on the interstate through the mountains (I rewally like my Dunlops!) but around town I have to really pay attention and give a lot of steering input unless the road surface is pretty new :)flat). Maybe I'll drop from 225 to 205 next season.

BTW, liked the reviews of the S03 but found a huge deal on the Dunlops.
 
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