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seskeet 07-10-2012 03:14 PM

Tramlining problem continues... and it's not just me
Sorry in advance for the long post but.....

I'm wondering who out here has experienced tramlining problems with their GCs. Tramlining is where the tires follow the linear grooves in a roadway, like they have a mind of their own. Read more if you're interested on .

I posted a week and half ago about the fact that my 2012 GC Limited with under 1000 miles on the odometer and with factory 18" wheels and factory Michelin P265/60R18 tires tramlines very noticeably and has since the day I drove it off of the dealer lot. I've tried to ignore it but I can't. The dealership service manager rode in my vehicle and completely agrees that it's occurring but he says
A) it's not a vehicle problem [they fully checked/corrected the alignment and it's all in specs],
B) it's the nature of the beast -- that's just how GCs are, and
C) if anything, it's a "road problem".

Please.... a road problem?!?!?! Give me a break. They've washed their hands of it.

I opened a case with Jeep Customer Service and they have washed their hands of it, too, saying it's my fault for not test driving the exact VIN that I bought. Again: puh-lease....

Anyway, I just went for a quick test ride with a coworker in his 2011 GC Laredo with the exact same tires and rims as I have. His vehicle experiences the same problems over the same stretches of road. He wasn't even aware it was happening until I pointed out the sensation to him. Now it's at the top of his mind. (Sorry, Kev!)

BTW, his tire pressures are equal all around and running about 34-37PSI (cold/hot). Mine are equal all around and running 38-41PSI (cold/hot) -- which is how I took delivery of it. So, in a way we've shown that pressures from 34-41PSI make no difference in the behavior of the vehicle/tires.

I'm pretty convinced that this is a 'where the rubber meets the road' issue. That is, I believe that it's the combination of the tread design/size of the Michelin Altitude P265 tires and the grooved pavement that causes the tramlining and the accompanying erratic swaying sensation as you drive/ride in the vehicle. There are plenty of stretches of grooved pavement in Michigan (Telegraph Road, north of 12 Mile, I-75 near Mt. Morris, M-59 near Rochester, I-75 in other stretches, etc.) and my vehicle tramlines on all of them. And grooved pavement just keeps getting more and more popular.

I just want this problem to go away. Has anyone else (other than norcal who I know experiences this, too, but I don't know where he/she lives) noticed this? If so, has anyone been able to resolve it? I have a case open with Michelin but I have my doubts as to where that will go; they haven't even contacted me back yet. If they want to let me try some different tires, I'd be game. Anything to make this go away!

Anyway, I'm open to suggestions.

robpp 07-10-2012 03:55 PM

IMO you are SOL.

Michelin will blame the road.

Imagine how tram lining feels on a motorcycle. Or metal bridge decks.

I suggest you find a different way to work .

seskeet 07-14-2012 06:49 AM

Well, what do you know?
Michelin came through for me. They took back the original Michelin Latitudes (at 100% coverage; heck, they only had 1141 miles on them). Of course, I had to go with another Michelin model (even though I wanted to go with BF Goodrich) so I went with the LTX M/S2's. Pretty much the best tire they make and one which gets rave reviews, if you look at the research.

So far, the verdict is a good one: The severity of the tramlining is definitely reduced. Is it fully gone? No. But, it's much better. And, as a very pleasant side effect, the ride is much more civilized, too. That could be due to the slightly lower tire pressure (2 pounds less than before).

For others with the issue, I'd suggest opening a customer service case with Michelin. The worst thing that can happen is they won't work with you. In my case, for the incremental cost of the LTX M/S2's, I'm a happy camper.

robpp 07-14-2012 04:35 PM

I'm amazed.

I have the LTX M S 2 on my XJ
Great tire.

man n black 07-14-2012 05:12 PM

Alignment....try a toe / caster adjustment. Had this problem on our Tahoe after a tire change. Made a big difference.


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seskeet 07-16-2012 05:16 PM

Alignment was not the solution
Thanks anyway, man n black, but an alignment was our first attempt; it's even mentioned in the post that started this thread.

Anyway, the LTX M/S2's have done wonders. Thanks, Michelin... and that wasn't sarcasm. This thread is done. I hope to never have to post another problem out here -- but at the same time, I'm not that naive.

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