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Sequential Alignment Fault Diagnositcs

 

Condition

Possible cause

Premature tyre wear Incorrect tyre inflation
Wheel alignment out of tolerance
Suspension components worn
Incorrect ride height (1)
Distorted wheel
Incorrect torsion bar adjustment
Loose or worn wheel bearings
Worn shock absorbers
Tyres out of balance
Pulls to one side Incorrect tyre inflation
Brakes binding (2)
Mismatched tyres (3)
Broken coil spring (1)
Power steering valve not centred (4)
Wheel alignment out of tolerance (5)
Defective wheel bearings (6)
Damaged anti roll bar drop links
Incorrect castor angle (7)
Wear on nsf tyre (8)
Heavy steering Drag link seized
Ball joint seized
Steering linkage seized (9)
Power steering fluid low (10)
Power steering belt loose
Power steering pump defective (11)
Incorrect wheel alignment (12)
Damaged steering rack
Damaged suspension components (13)
Vehicle wandering Worn or damaged suspension
Worn track control arm or tie rod (14)
Loose or worn wheel bearings (6)
Incorrect tyre inflation
Anti-roll bar drop link defective
Wheel alignment out of tolerance (5)
Broken coil or sagging coil spring (1)

 

Method of Testing

(1) Measure ride height from mid wheel arch to the centre of the hub, except no more than 10 mm difference across any given axle, a broken or sagging coil spring can cause a pull even from the rear

(2) If checking when cold, look for hot spots or blued discs,

(3) Rotational/ directional/ asymmetrical/ mismatch bias,

(4) Check track rod threads are even, ignore the position of the steering wheel, may prove steering wheel has been re-set,

(5) Will need to be in excess of 1 degree/ 6 mm normally negative/ toe out,

(6) Worn tapered rear wheel bearings will change the camber angle and cause a pull/ front wheel bearings are harder to test cold/ hold the coil spring and spin the wheel, if you feel a rumble then the bearing is worn,

(7) In most cases will only go wrong by an impact, tell tale sign, the wheel alignment will be a long way out, if a full wheel geometry is not available, check to see if the wheels have excessive set back, measure mid-wheel to mid-wheel, front to rear, ns and os, if the lowest is the direction the vehicle is pulling,then the castor is probably wrong, avoid setting just the wheel alignment as this will not resolve the pull and probably generate a complaint,

(8) Due to the road layout (UK) the nsf tyre has a smaller turning radius than the osf, this will cause the outside of the nsf tyre to wear more than the osf, this pattern of wear is unavoidable, if the vehicle is pulling left and the nsf is showing signs of wear, move the front wheels side to side, or front to rear, then test and adjust wheel alignment, non compliance is a common reason for an after adjustment complaint,

(9) Common on Fiesta/ Escorts, jack up front wheels and turn steering, if (terminology differs) the steering column/ linkage/ coupling/ joint, is seized it will go tight 180 degrees, ½ turn,

(10) The more the steering is turned, the more the pump will scream,

(11) Jack up front wheels, start engine and rev to about 2500 rpm observe if the steering wheel moves, also manually check the steering's resistance by moving the steering wheel from left to right,

(12) Will need to be in excess of 1 degree/ 6 mm positive/ toe in,

(13) Disconnect track rod from strut, turn strut from side to side, and feel if metalastic bush Is seized----

(14) If front wheel drive the wander will deviate left/ right under acceleration/ deceleration, beware a worn engine mount on a front wheel drive vehicle can also cause this, by off setting the drive shafts, rear wheel drive will deviate mainly under braking, or coming of bumps.

Blackboots and Wheels in Motion offer new tyre fitting, bespoke wheel alignment and geometry services at our state of the art workshop facility in Chesham Buckinghamshire. We fit a complete range of tyre brands across all types of car from high performance and super cars to prestige models and family cars. Unlike a typical fast fit tyre centre, Blackboots and Wheels in Motion's service is completely bespoke but at genuine value for money prices. Compare our prices to the fast fit operators and then come and experience the Blackboots and Wheels in Motion difference.
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