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Unread 02-13-2014, 11:15 AM   #1
spinxt
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Alignment Question

So my GC is not pulling one way or another, however the steering wheel is off between 5-7 degrees (to the right). I took it to the local NTB to get the tires rotated and had them do a front end alignment. The associate at the counter typed into the computer "customer says steering wheel is off-center to right". They aligned it and gave me the report. Five seconds after I left I could tell the steering wheel is the same as it was before. I didn't have time to turn around, so I called the shop back. They said that it was aligned to the mfg. specs and there is nothing else they could do?

Is this true or do I need to find a new shop? It seems to me they should center the wheel BEFORE performing the alignment, correct???

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Unread 02-13-2014, 01:36 PM   #2
tjkj2002
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If you had a "front end alignment" done then they can be correct,the rear tires set the front toe then you center the steering wheel.If the rear end is out of spec it can push the vehicle right or left making you correct the steering wheel which seems then to be off center.

Plus one persons version of "centered" could be a little right/left of anothers depending on how one sits behind the steering wheel.
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Unread 02-13-2014, 08:44 PM   #3
spinxt
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Trust me...it's not centered. This isn't a perception thing. The car doesn't pull one way or another. It tracks perfectly straight if I let go of the wheel.
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Unread 02-13-2014, 09:08 PM   #4
lawbreaker
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remove wheel, center it and replace.
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Unread 02-13-2014, 09:35 PM   #5
CRAWLING 98
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If it is just the steering wheel being off center you can adjust it easily.
You will have to adjust the drag link.
loosen the nuts that lock the drag link, and turn the drag link (one way will turn the steering wheel one way and the other the other); adjust as necessary to change the steering wheel position.

re-tighten nuts.
tjsteering-1-.jpg

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Unread 02-13-2014, 09:37 PM   #6
CRAWLING 98
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This might take a couple tries to get is the way you want it. So adjust it - drive it - re-adjust as required...

Unless you have rack and pinion then I stand corrected.
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Unread 02-13-2014, 09:42 PM   #7
CRAWLING 98
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lawbreaker View Post
remove wheel, center it and replace.
the sprocket will not allow this
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Unread 02-13-2014, 10:31 PM   #8
rmcalis
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Find another shop. The factory does not have a spec that requires the steering wheel to be off center. My WK2 is set to factory specs and the wheel is straight.
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Unread 02-14-2014, 02:27 AM   #9
TuckerDarling
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Quote:
Originally Posted by spinxt View Post
So my GC is not pulling one way or another, however the steering wheel is off between 5-7 degrees (to the right). I took it to the local NTB to get the tires rotated and had them do a front end alignment. The associate at the counter typed into the computer "customer says steering wheel is off-center to right". They aligned it and gave me the report. Five seconds after I left I could tell the steering wheel is the same as it was before. I didn't have time to turn around, so I called the shop back. They said that it was aligned to the mfg. specs and there is nothing else they could do?

Is this true or do I need to find a new shop? It seems to me they should center the wheel BEFORE performing the alignment, correct???
I had almost the exact same situation, except my steering wheel is straight and the Jeep pulls to one side. They said the alignment was "perfect" according to specs, and said it was probably due to tire wear (only 2000 miles on the vehicle).
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Unread 02-14-2014, 08:03 AM   #10
Bullheadbud
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I am not a mechanic or expert on alignment. Seems proper alignment on any vehicle would be NOT to pull to one side or the other but maybe ever so slightly "veer" to the right shoulder side, again ever so slightly. As far as cause by tire wear with 2k on the tires, I can't believe that one unless they are worn significantly. Did anyone at that shop that said alignment was "perfect" recommend tire rotation to see if it did the same thing? If it does the same, whoever did the alignment is incorrect. Don't know if this was a dealership or not but, my preferred dealership where I have purchased my last 3 Jeeps, very good service department, really has questioned my mind with last service on my RAM 1500. Brought it in for regular oil change and tire rotation, 10k miles on the odometer. Provided my own synthetic oil for the service. Picked it up later in the day, drove home, checked oil level on the dip stick. On the dip stick, had black oil streaks on it amid the clean looking oil. Also, this was the 1st tire rotation since purchase. Oil did not look right and I brought them exactly the amount of oil to be used "when" filter was to be changed. After checking the oil level and tires, I noticed a plastic shopping bag still left on the floor of the rear seat. In the bag there was what would have been the last quart of new oil for a oil change with filter. Starting to wonder?? Crawled my 68 year old self under the front of the vehicle to check the filter. There was a lot of oil dribbles around the area but the filter did not look like it was a NEW one. Starting to wonder more?? Front tires seemed to look like they were in same positions as they showed more outer wear from steering, as compared to rear. SOOO, drove back down to dealership. Talked to my service guy I've used for past 8 years/Mike about oil filter looked like the original, extra quart of oil in back seat would have been used if filter was changed, front tires steering wear showing so were they rotated or not?? He said he'd have mechanic "rack" the truck and have me inspect it with them both. He drove the truck to the shop bay while I waited at the front counter so I did lose sight of the truck for about 10 minutes. Mike called me back to see under the truck with him and the mechanic. When I looked under the truck at the filter, it did appear to be clean and new, did not look to be what I saw from under the vehicle, SO I'm thinking the mechanic racked the truck used a clean rag and wiped the filter clean. Tires issue, mechanic "swore" they had been rotated. I'm hesitant now in my confidence with this dealership's service department's trust of work. Next time will be different. Will mark my old stuff on the vehicle.
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Unread 02-14-2014, 08:37 AM   #11
wriggly1dog
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It's sad, but in this day and age, there are still unscrupulous shops out there, and one needs to be careful. My wife had a ZX2 that had a variable cam solenoid/phaser go bad. Took it to a local dealer to get it repaired, and since it had enough mileage to warrant it, I decided to have them put a new cam belt on it at the same time. The cam belt cover was really easy to remove, so I took it off, and marked the top of the belt with my initials. After I got the car back, I took the cover off and rotated the engine and lo and behold the belt was the original with my initials. We had an interesting exchange at the dealer, but I relented, and they ended up doing the cam belt and refunding me for the entire repair of the solenoid.
I am lucky to have a local shop that only does alignment and suspension work, and they have been family owned and in business for over 50 years, and they really know their stuff. You bring a vehicle to them, they not only get it perfect, they let you know if any of your tires has a radial pull or not. I have gotten two different tires replaced under warranty at Discount tire in the last four years on two different vehicles that had developed radial tire pulls during the warranty period. Other alignment shops would never have caught it, let alone actually report it in the comments on the invoice. Discount tire did not argue with the reports and replaced the tires with no question, and I was left with perfectly aligned vehicles and tires that rode perfectly neutral.
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Unread 02-14-2014, 04:42 PM   #12
BobsWK2
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My steering wheel was off slightly to the right from the factory. Dealer tried to correct it twice. I finally gave up on them and went to the pros at a tire store who had the latest Hunter alignment rack and they got it right.
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Unread 02-15-2014, 01:22 AM   #13
TuckerDarling
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bullheadbud View Post
I am not a mechanic or expert on alignment. Seems proper alignment on any vehicle would be NOT to pull to one side or the other but maybe ever so slightly "veer" to the right shoulder side, again ever so slightly. As far as cause by tire wear with 2k on the tires, I can't believe that one unless they are worn significantly. Did anyone at that shop that said alignment was "perfect" recommend tire rotation to see if it did the same thing? If it does the same, whoever did the alignment is incorrect.....
It was the dealer that I bought the Jeep from. The tire rotation helped a little but it still pulls pretty hard to the right when I gas it from a stand still.
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Unread 02-16-2014, 01:06 PM   #14
CRAWLING 98
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TuckerDarling View Post
It was the dealer that I bought the Jeep from. The tire rotation helped a little but it still pulls pretty hard to the right when I gas it from a stand still.
If you are getting a pull to the right upon acceleration it's called torque steer which is usually an issue with the rear axle suspension set up. Check to make sure everything is tight and straight.
Tire rotation would not change this. have a good shop check a "all 4 wheel" alignment not just a front wheel alignment.
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Unread 02-16-2014, 01:15 PM   #15
97HMCS
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rmcalis View Post
find another shop. The factory does not have a spec that requires the steering wheel to be off center. My wk2 is set to factory specs and the wheel is straight.
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