To ALL the Suspension Alignment EXPERTS Please Read - JeepForum.com
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post #1 of 9 Old 03-28-2020, 07:50 PM Thread Starter
GCTrekkn
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Exclamation To ALL the Suspension Alignment EXPERTS Please Read

I am beginning to think my wife is out to destroy our new expensive Jeep Grand Cherokee. Today, upon coming home she advises she started to pull out of a gas station turning right onto the main road and in doing so, she cut to short and the right rear tire caught the edge & went up and over the curb at the exit of the station. Attached is a similar pic of the curb to give a reference to the height of the curb. She was maybe going 2-3 mph? Inspecting the tire and wheel there is a minor scuff mark on the tire but nothing on the wheel itself. The tires are Michelin Premier and there are no bubbles appearing on the sidewall etc. I took the Jeep out on the interstate and there is no vibration etc. and it doesn't pull either right or left BUT....I noticed the steering wheel is not centered and is cocked to the right when driving in a straight line. GRANTED, it may have been cocked to the right like that and I've never paid attention when driving in a complete straight line but that is the way it is now. Of course I am concerned either the alignment is now out on that wheel or suspension/axle part is damaged(?) but not knowing anything about either I need your feedback. Would an event that I have described cause the steering wheel to be turned to the right somewhat to keep the vehicle in a straight line? Does it sound like something has been damaged? Can the suspension take that kind of abuse without damage? We bought it new last year. It is a 2wd and is obviously not trail rated so I've never taken it off road. I know the dealer or alignment shop can diagnose if there is any problem but I wanted to know what may be wrong if anything to be prepared for cost.

Thanks so much for any/all feedback! I hope everyone is doing ok during this coronavirus event we all are going through..stay safe!

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post #2 of 9 Old 03-28-2020, 07:54 PM
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get the alignment checked for peace of mind. Likely OK, but the cost of alignment will make you feel better and sleep at night

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post #3 of 9 Old 03-28-2020, 08:08 PM
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To be honest these vehicles have a reasonable ability off road, and if a bump like that at less than 10mph does damage, there is some major underlining issues.

The worst a kerb like that should do on standard road tyres is possibly damage the rim, or wall of the tyre, but that would depend on the angle it was hit.

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post #4 of 9 Old 03-28-2020, 08:55 PM
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A rear alignment issue is unlikely to cause an off-center steering wheel.


You'll want an alignment to get the steering wheel centered anyway.
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post #5 of 9 Old 03-28-2020, 10:51 PM
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So the right rear tire hopped a large curb at 2mph and now the Jeep seems to drift to the left when the steering wheel is held straight. So she could have bent a right rear suspension link enough that the rear tracks out a bit (toed out).. or the cradle itself shifted (Unlikely).

Stability control depends on steering wheel being pretty much centered, so I’d suggest having the alignment checked regardless. You’ll want to find a good alignment shop as the typical shop may claim the rear is not adjustable, or they just don’t do it. They can measure the alignment for you, however. But why pay twice. So check that the shop can adjust the rear. The rear suspension is adjustable regardless of what the alignment machine book says.
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post #6 of 9 Old 03-29-2020, 04:49 AM
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Take it to the dealer and tell them you think the steering wheel has never been straight and you just noticed it since your wife drives the car usually. Itís under warranty.

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post #7 of 9 Old 03-29-2020, 07:42 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 2008OverlandCRD View Post
Take it to the dealer and tell them you think the steering wheel has never been straight and you just noticed it since your wife drives the car usually. Itís under warranty.
I called the dealer to do just that and was told they can't just "check the alignment" it would have to be put on the rack and I would be charged the mechanics hourly rate to do that. Said it was not covered under warranty. IS this BS from this particular dealer?
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post #8 of 9 Old 03-29-2020, 08:00 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by ColdCase View Post
So the right rear tire hopped a large curb at 2mph and now the Jeep seems to drift to the left when the steering wheel is held straight. So she could have bent a right rear suspension link enough that the rear tracks out a bit (toed out).. or the cradle itself shifted (Unlikely).

Stability control depends on steering wheel being pretty much centered, so Iíd suggest having the alignment checked regardless. Youíll want to find a good alignment shop as the typical shop may claim the rear is not adjustable, or they just donít do it. They can measure the alignment for you, however. But why pay twice. So check that the shop can adjust the rear. The rear suspension is adjustable regardless of what the alignment machine book says.
Thanks ColdCase for that possible scenario. I should have elaborated that she did not "hit" the curb, the rear tire rolled up at an angle maybe at 1mph onto and over the curb as she was pulling out so all of the force on that wheel came from when it was coming "off/down" the curb impacting onto the street as she started to accelerate out into the street. Still the curb height and the wheel coming off the curb at 2-3 mph and the "BLAM" (lol) as she describes it is what is concerning me as this was a very hard force on that wheel obviously. Is the alignment and that suspension part the only thing you suspect could be damaged? Or could the axle/case/transmission have been affected as well? Again, just want to be prepared for when I take it to the dealer to be inspected as to what they are going to try to charge me to repair/replace unnecessarily.
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post #9 of 9 Old 03-29-2020, 11:21 AM
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They will usually cover an alignment due to a factory error for maybe two or three months or so. Most of the labor is getting it on the rack and setting up the machine. Doesn't take long to align unless there is a stubborn bolt.

You may want to check for a dented exhaust tip and scrapes under the bumper. I wouldn't expect damage to the suspension short of a little alignment tweak. The driveline is tucked up and protected. There are three links and a control arm. #2 is the tension link forward of the axle, #3 is the toe link on the rear side of the axle. Both are tucked up behind the wheel. There may have been enough twisting or side force as the tire climbed the curb that the alignment was tweaked, but the bang was probably the bump stop or a part of the body hitting the curb.

I'd be guessing the off center steering wheel was there from the factory, but thats just a guess.The knuckle usually breaks before any serious bending of links.
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