04-24-13, 02:18 PM
I was told that there are two kinds of alignment specs: (1) within intolerance and (2) factory recommended. I am assuming that the factory are specific. Is this the case? What are the exact factory specs regarding alignment on our car? Thanks!
04-25-13, 12:58 AM
The FSM will give a preferred setting for each angle, toe, camber and caster, and then a range, usually about one degree either way, that is acceptable. A good tech will set to the preferred spec. Some will just get it in the range and let it go. Some places charge for a full alignment and give a half-ass check of the toe and run you out the door.
A car that is in the "acceptable range" can still have problems. If caster is +1 degree on one side and -1 degree on the other, you can have a very slight pull that is hard to fix if you keep taking it to the same lazy shop.
A really good tech will know what works and doesn't work on different cars. First time I took my El Camino to my front end guy, he asked if I wanted to throw in a couple of degrees of extra caster to make it track better. That was almost twenty years ago. I'm just afraid he's going to retire soon.
04-26-13, 08:18 PM
Thanks for the info, tightwad. I have the PDF manual I got off of ebay, which one of the guys on this forum suggested to all. I could not find the preferred settings. I'm bringing her back in tomorrow morning to the same place I bought my new tires (about 1-2 months ago). They forgot to reset the TPMS and I asked the manager about the alignment. He said they would set it to the factory settings. Hopefully that was a true statement. Right now she's within allegedly specs:
Front Camber: L 0.0 R 0.1
Front Caster: L 5.5 R 5.3
Front Toe: L 0.10 R 0.10
Rear camber: L -0.2 R -0.4
Rear toe: L 0.05 R 0.03
This bulletin is being issued to revise the Wheel Alignment Specifications in the Wheel
Alignment sub-section of the Service Manual. Please replace the current information in
the Service Manual with the following information.
The following information has been updated within SI. If you are using a paper version
of this Service Manual, please make a reference to this bulletin on the affected page.
Front Camber -0.00° ±0.75
Front Camber Cross Tolerance ±0.75°
Front Caster 5.80° ±0.75
Front Caster Cross Tolerance ±0.75°
Front Total Toe 0.20° ±0.20°
Steering wheel Angle 0.00° ±3.50°
Thrust Angle --
Rear Camber -0.05°±0.75°
Rear Total Toe 0.10° ±0.20°
Rear Thrust Angle 0.00° ±0.20°