Our Community is 940,000 Strong. Join Us.


My wife's vehicle pulls to the right or left


gigaboo1
01-05-2012, 08:49 AM
My wife recently had some front end work done after replacing 4 tires. Shortly after the tires were done, we had the control arm bushings replaced. My wife says that the car now will, on it's own go to the right or even left. An alignment was done after the bushings were done. Shortly after the bushings were done, the front struts and strut mounts were replaced and again another alignment was done. She still is experiencing this issue. any advice would be great.

gmtech1
01-05-2012, 08:58 AM
First of all, what are we working on? I would like to see some alignment specs. What kind of tires were installed, all season? studded snows? Are you sure there is no play in any steering linkage, like tie rods or ball joints?

gigaboo1
01-05-2012, 09:04 AM
I'm not the mechanic so I don't know the alignment specs, but the tires are Dunlop Signature all season. When the car was finished they did an alignment. They have checked out all other front end components regarding the suspension and everything looked good and tight. Also had the struts and strut mounts replaced too, then another alignment was done. MY wife says this started shortly after the control arm bushings were replaced. The tire place will look at the tires but think either the alignment is off or just road crown, but like I stated this didn't start happening until after the bushings were replaced.

gigaboo1
01-05-2012, 09:15 AM
sorry, it's a 1998 Chevy Cavalier, LS 2.4 ltr.

gmtech1
01-05-2012, 10:03 AM
Did they give you a print out of the alignment? Also, were old bushings worn out/loose, or were they just noisy. It's possible that if they were completely worn out and loose, then replaced with new ones and new tires, the steering is just responding quicker to steering inputs and the driver just needs to get adjusted to a tighter steering "feel"?

gigaboo1
01-05-2012, 10:06 AM
No print out. The bushing were not only worn out, when you hit bumps you could here metal on metal. All that noise stopped once the struts were replaced which were also bad. Is it possible it's tire related? Maybe something with the belts in the tire?

gigaboo1
01-05-2012, 10:08 AM
Actually, thinking about it, the receipt may have alignment specs on it. I'll have to take a look at it when i get home.

gmtech1
01-05-2012, 01:03 PM
Yes, it's possible it's a tire issue. You can rotate the tires and see if your condition changes.

gigaboo1
01-05-2012, 01:06 PM
Are there certain specs the alignment should be at that you could post?

gigaboo1
01-05-2012, 01:19 PM
Found this on another website: The exact angle of the tires on that vehicle (http://www.answerbag.com/q_view/876956#) should be 1.45degrees positive camber +/- 1.00degree.
Does this sound right?

gmtech1
01-05-2012, 01:45 PM
Yeah, thats right. I would like to know what the readings are on your car though. If you dont have them, no big deal, but it would be nice to see them and make sure all is well.

gigaboo1
01-05-2012, 01:49 PM
Okay, thanks. I will check the paperwork later today and reply again if it has them.

gigaboo1
01-05-2012, 04:52 PM
Just checked my receipts and there aren't any alignment specs. It definitely isn't an alignment issue only because when I drove it, it stayed straight. She is saying that it's not pulling to the left or to the right, the car is basically feels like it wants to go to the right or left. It kind of drifts, not pulls. She says she also feels like the car is doing it on turns, like it's drifting.

DeltaP
01-05-2012, 05:26 PM
I make no claims to being an alignment expert but if the car is darting left and right and hard to keep straight ahead it sounds like the caster angle,( formerly called "King Pin Inclination"), is off. Yes, the control arm bushing replacement could directly affect that.

GuyWithCavalier
01-06-2012, 11:55 AM
Just checked my receipts and there aren't any alignment specs. It definitely isn't an alignment issue only because when I drove it, it stayed straight. She is saying that it's not pulling to the left or to the right, the car is basically feels like it wants to go to the right or left. It kind of drifts, not pulls. She says she also feels like the car is doing it on turns, like it's drifting.

The fact that the pull (left or right) is actually changing and intermittent or inconsistent is a big alarm bell.

On a Cavalier, it is very possible that the K-frame is rusted and flexing,
with the result that one wheel or both are moving in and out of parallel.

This symptom is a precursor to loss of vehicle control, and a bad accident.

If the k-frame is rusted out or cracked, it must be replaced immediately.

When mine went, I was lucky that we were only driving 10 mph.
Once it cracked, the passenger-front wheel turned right and began rubbing on the wheel well (when turning right).
When we tried to put it in the driveway, it bent further,
and the right CV-axle was pulled out and destroyed.
There was also no easy way to push the vehicle, because the wheels pointed too far apart.
I had to put on the small spare tire (so it could slide on this wheel),
and use friend's car (with an empty tire) to push it off the road into driveway.

It is really really imperative that you pull the front wheels and look for
any breakage or bending of the k-frame (also called engine cradle or crossmember).

Add your comment to this topic!