Ok so a while ago I slid sideways into a curb and hit it pretty square with my front wheel, not sure exactly how fast, but not very fast (it was icy and yes I had snow tires).
It makes a pretty loud bang. So I get out, everything looks fine so I drive somewhere and park
There is a small section missing from the aluminum rim. Tire has a tiny scuff.
Car drives OK, some minor vibration - I get to the wheel shop, they tell me the wheel is toast. I get a new wheel, same tire mounted and balanced and swapped to the back. They go as far as to tell me I should drive around for a bit and see if I even think I need an alignment.
Well I get an alignment anyway, toe is out, cross camber is out - the wheel that hit actually had a little more negative camber than the other side.. OK fine.. They notice nothing else wrong. Get the alignment fixed - everything within spec.
Vibration is improved.
anyway after a while a notice some whirring noise from the affected side - go to mechanic - can't convince them anything is wrong. Drive around more, whirring gets louder - manage to convince them it is a wheel bearing which is replaced.
The whirring is resolved. Get another alignment.
I then started to notice notice some very subtle intermittent vibration in the steering wheel - usually at low speeds going straight. If I speed up the vibration goes away, which I find odd. It seems to be very inconsistent - I only notice it around 5% or less of the time (and believe me I am looking for it)
I change wheels and tires to a completely different balanced set - no improvement.
So, the tie rods look dead straight, what do you think I could be dealing with? subtly bent tie rod, Susp crossmember, Lower control arm, knuckle, psychosomatic?
If alignment is in spec, it must be some sort of dynamic problem? what could be causing vibration intermittently?
I am have been to two different mechanics and will try another one soon, but would appreciate any thoughts...