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Old 12-19-2006, 11:20 PM   #1
All4bSpinnin
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Default Dealer says my 06 STi needs a rear camber kit, but I'm on stock suspension?

as the title says...

i took my car into the local suby dealor and they said my whole left side was out of alignment... the car has stock suspension.. so why does a stock car need a camber kit? shouldnt it come with the kit from the factory?

the guy at service said that they can adjust the front camber but not the rear and that the front would be covered under warranty. As for the back, id have to pay for an aftermarket camber kit, plus id have to pay for the instal of an aftermarket part... i took my car in for a 40$ oil and tire rotation now this might cost me 150$.

so is this true? does the sti need a rear camber kit or are they just trying to sell me a product?

if it does need a camber kit and anyone has one i'll buy it.

-dave
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Old 12-19-2006, 11:28 PM   #2
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Take it to sears or some other alignment shop and get a second opinoin. Have you hit any curbs or giant pot holes that may have damaged any suspension. If the car is that far out of alignment and you haven't done anything to throw it out of wack they should be paying for new parts and not just a "camber kit." It sounds fishy to me, did he offer to change your headlight fluid and muffler bearings as well?
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Old 12-19-2006, 11:32 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by All4bSpinnin View Post
as the title says...

i took my car into the local suby dealor and they said my whole left side was out of alignment... the car has stock suspension.. so why does a stock car need a camber kit? shouldnt it come with the kit from the factory?

the guy at service said that they can adjust the front camber but not the rear and that the front would be covered under warranty. As for the back, id have to pay for an aftermarket camber kit, plus id have to pay for the instal of an aftermarket part... i took my car in for a 40$ oil and tire rotation now this might cost me 150$.

so is this true? does the sti need a rear camber kit or are they just trying to sell me a product?

if it does need a camber kit and anyone has one i'll buy it.

-dave
Are you serious? They'll change your oil, give you a rear camber kit, install it, and align your car for $150? I'd take that in a heartbeat. They're not pulling your leg about the non-adjustable rear camber though. It does get out of whack (0.7deg difference between sides on my car) and there's no way to fix it short of banging the suspension around or.....getting a rear camber kit. I haven't seen anything for the price they're talking about though(nothing). That might as well be a free part for the price of the alignment.

Again, if it were me and that was the total, there wouldn't be a decision to make.

-Mike
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Old 12-20-2006, 12:18 AM   #4
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Right, but it's out of alignment from the factory. Even if they aren't pulling his leg, which I'm sure their not all jesting aside, they should still fix it gratis.
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Old 12-20-2006, 12:35 AM   #5
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i have noticed that the camber in the rear is out of whack in some cars ...i thought my camber was all wrong for having springs that lowered it so much but now that i have my coilovers and i raised it to stock height , camber still looks weird ...specially in one side ..well i guess its time for camber kit before my tire gets chewed up..

weird...
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Old 12-20-2006, 12:43 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by fourdegrees View Post
Right, but it's out of alignment from the factory. Even if they aren't pulling his leg, which I'm sure their not all jesting aside, they should still fix it gratis.
Really? I don't see where he says it was out of alignment when he got the car. Just that it's out of alignment when he brought it in for an oil change (implying 3k miles of driving). If it was out of alignment from the factory I'd give them the car back.

You bring up an interesting point though, that they should fix it for free. So I double-checked the service manual


Notice the second bullet point.
Throw the book at them.

Of course they'll probably claim it was abuse.....
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Old 12-20-2006, 12:46 AM   #7
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It is my opinion that the rear subframe is offcenter, which could cause the whole rear end to be out of alignment. Specifically, one side would have too much camber and the other side would have too little camber.

If this is the case, then they need to fix it under warranty because it was misaligned from the factory and they failed to correct it at the PreDeliveryInspection.
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Old 12-20-2006, 12:58 AM   #8
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^^^^Seconded.
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Old 12-20-2006, 04:38 AM   #9
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Warranty
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Old 12-20-2006, 09:43 AM   #10
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Warranty. DO NOT allow them to ghetto rig the problem. The solution is to fix the root cause, not crank the geometry around like some amature body shop.
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Old 12-20-2006, 01:13 PM   #11
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Without seeing some actual alignment numbers, it's impossible to say whether there's really a problem or not, or to jump to the conclusion that something needs to be "fixed". As a couple others have noted, it's not unusual for Subaru's to have pretty significant cross-camber in the rear - both my Legacy and my sister's '02 WRX wagon had that "problem". I can't say it's ever affected tire wear or handling, so I just don't worry about it.

Pat Olsen
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Old 12-20-2006, 03:51 PM   #12
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Another little 'tidbit' is that when the service manuals for the STI first came out, the specifications for the rear camber were MISPRINTED as -0°40' (in fact, that spec sheet posted above contains the incorrect value). They have since been corrected to the proper spec of -1°40' (equal to -1.66°).

If the dealership is looking at an old manual, then they probably have it wrong. So to reiterate what Mr Olsen said above, what are the actual values they measured?
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Old 12-21-2006, 01:47 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fourdegrees View Post
Take it to sears or some other alignment shop and get a second opinoin. Have you hit any curbs or giant pot holes that may have damaged any suspension. If the car is that far out of alignment and you haven't done anything to throw it out of wack they should be paying for new parts and not just a "camber kit." It sounds fishy to me, did he offer to change your headlight fluid and muffler bearings as well?
haha i was asking myself the exact same questions lol.

as for the alightment. the rear was like -.6?... i'll check my sheet tomarrow and post the specifics. from what the dealor said it was really close to normal.
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Old 12-21-2006, 01:58 AM   #14
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the whole thing is that the car is at 11k miles. the guy at the service department said the whole left side was out. he adjusted the front left under warranty but said the rear couldnt be adjusted like i said above. he then asked, "have you hit and potholes or stuff like that" so basically i got the hint that they arent going to cover it under warranty.

even if i do have to get an aftermarket kit for the car then why am i having to pay for labor? i dont care if its aftermarket, the car is stock and supposed to be able to be adjusted while its in its stock form!!!! lemme ask this... if the car is supposed to have "perfect camber" from the factory then how does the factory adjust this?? do they instal a camber kit and then take it off before it leaves the factory!?

i think im going to do like i was told above and to take it to a place closeby and get a second opinion.
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Old 12-21-2006, 02:34 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by All4bSpinnin View Post
the whole thing is that the car is at 11k miles. the guy at the service department said the whole left side was out. he adjusted the front left under warranty but said the rear couldnt be adjusted like i said above.
He's telling the truth. Rear camber is not adjustable in stock trim.

Quote:
Originally Posted by All4bSpinnin
even if i do have to get an aftermarket kit for the car then why am i having to pay for labor? i dont care if its aftermarket, the car is stock and supposed to be able to be adjusted while its in its stock form!!!!
No, it isn't.

Quote:
Originally Posted by All4
lemme ask this... if the car is supposed to have "perfect camber" from the factory then how does the factory adjust this?? do they instal a camber kit and then take it off before it leaves the factory!?
There is no "perfect camber". The spec is -140' +/- 45', so there's a full 1.5 of tolerance there. That's a pretty huge tolerance, and production variance should easily fall within that. As I said before, cross-camber in the rear is "normal" on these cars - both of the two cars I have personal experience with had 0.6 or 0.7deg difference between left and right, and that's still within tolerance.

Pat
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Old 12-21-2006, 02:42 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Patrick Olsen View Post
There is no "perfect camber". The spec is -1°40' +/- 45', so there's a full 1.5° of tolerance there.
Pat
Maybe I'm misunderstanding the numbers, isn't a tolerance of +/- 45' a total range of 90'? Still a huge range.

EDIT: My stupid question has been answered. Minutes != hundredths

Last edited by 614inda617; 12-22-2006 at 10:27 AM.
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Old 12-21-2006, 03:37 PM   #17
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90 minutes = 1.5*

methinks.
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Old 12-21-2006, 06:59 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by waktasz View Post
90 minutes = 1.5*
Yahtzee!

Unless someone changed the whole degrees-minutes-seconds thing, there are 60" in 1', and 60' in 1.

Pat
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Old 01-04-2007, 12:49 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nhluhr View Post
It is my opinion that the rear subframe is offcenter, which could cause the whole rear end to be out of alignment. Specifically, one side would have too much camber and the other side would have too little camber.

If this is the case, then they need to fix it under warranty because it was misaligned from the factory and they failed to correct it at the PreDeliveryInspection.
I know that I have some significant cross-camber in the rear as well. Even though I have never felt any adverse affects, I'd like to remove it if I can. I've read through your toe and thrust-angle alignment FAQ and the other alignment sticky but didn't see anyone mention making adjustments to the rear sub frame to fix cross-camber. In fact, looking through the service manual, I didn't even see anything labeled as the rear sub frame.

I'm wondering a couple of things. 1) Is the rear cross-member synonymous with the rear sub frame? (I can't see what else you'd be talking about.) 2) How would one adjust such a thing? If it's the cross-member it looks like it just bolts right into the frame without any means for adjustment. Any documentation here?

If you're feeling a hankering for another alignment FAQ I'd think this would be a good one since I see so many cross-camber complaints on these forums.

BTW, any resolution to this?

Cheers,
Mike
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Old 01-04-2007, 04:54 PM   #20
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I'll see what I can do about a continuation of that to include camber and subframe/crossmember issues.
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Old 01-04-2007, 05:09 PM   #21
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Excellent. I look forward to reading the updates.
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Old 01-04-2007, 06:28 PM   #22
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It is really difficult to comment on this without knowing the actual measured camber values.

Was this the first ever alignment for you? And does it look recent or like it could be as-it-was from the factory (eg do you have tire wear commensurate with the alignment problems)?

Basically, how do you know that you didn't hit a pothole and knock it out of alignment? I feel like that is a more likely explanation than that the factory missed the above (generous) tolerances on you car. It's not like you just walk away for a cup of coffee and skip quality control on one car ...
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Old 01-04-2007, 07:51 PM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nhluhr View Post
I'll see what I can do about a continuation of that to include camber and subframe/crossmember issues.
Do whiteline subframe lock bolts help the problem of a mis-aligned subframe?

EDIT: Also, for $150, they're probably going to install camber bolts.

-Mike
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Old 01-05-2007, 08:53 PM   #24
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Subframe lock bolts helping a mis-aligned subframe? Unless it is the stock bolts that have somehow bent within their bushings and are the sole etiology of the misalignement, I'd say no.

d
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Old 01-05-2007, 09:52 PM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ShiroChanWRX View Post
Subframe lock bolts helping a mis-aligned subframe? Unless it is the stock bolts that have somehow bent within their bushings and are the sole etiology of the misalignement, I'd say no.

d
The fact that the installation of the subframe lock bolts requires one to loosen the four subframe mounting bolts and shift the subframe as necessary to line the holes up would indicate to me that the soft rubber bushings don't perfectly center the subframe.

Quote:
Originally Posted by grippgoat View Post
Do whiteline subframe lock bolts help the problem of a mis-aligned subframe?
I don't have any before/after alignment numbers, but when I installed my subframe lock bolts a week or two ago the subframe clearly shifted towards the driver side a bit. So I would say the lock bolts could potentially fix a cross-camber condition, but it depends on how severe it is and obviously there could be other causes of the cross-camber.

Pat
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