Welcome to the North American Subaru Impreza Owners Club Wednesday September 17, 2014
Home Forums WikiNASIOC Products Store Modifications Upgrade Garage
NASIOC
Here you can view your subscribed threads, work with private messages and edit your profile and preferences Home Registration is free! Visit the NASIOC Store NASIOC Rules Search Find other members Frequently Asked Questions Calendar Archive NASIOC Upgrade Garage Logout
Go Back   NASIOC > NASIOC Technical > Service & Maintenance

Welcome to NASIOC - The world's largest online community for Subaru enthusiasts!
Welcome to the NASIOC.com Subaru forum.

You are currently viewing our forum as a guest, which gives you limited access to view most discussions and access our other features. By joining our community, free of charge, you will have access to post topics, communicate privately with other members (PM), respond to polls, upload content and access many other special features. Registration is free, fast and simple, so please join our community today!

If you have any problems with the registration process or your account login, please contact us.
* Registered users of the site do not see these ads.
Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 05-15-2004, 08:00 PM   #1
Rev1
Scooby Specialist
 
Member#: 51240
Join Date: Dec 2003
Chapter/Region: MWSOC
Location: Chicago
Vehicle:
08 Lexus IS350
Black

Smile Steering wheel alignment issues? No more!

I was fed up of having to drive with my steering wheel cocked slightly to the right on the freeway and on straight lines, so I finally managed to correct this myself by adjusting the steering tie rods for both the driver and passenger side.

And yes, it is an alignment issue. Correcting the toe, basically.

I basically followed the service manual alignment tips, and managed to make the car track perfectly straight now.

You just need a 14mm wrench for adjusting the tie rod, and I used a crescent wrench for undoing the tie rod lock nut.

It is torqued lightly (~60lbs-ft) so, no issues here. Fairly easy to undo.

Here's an excerpt from the manual:


Here's the steering tie rod:


As the manual says, undo the tie rod lock nut first (righty tighty, left loosey rule applies, from below the car and facing the wheels)


Then, grab your 14mm wrench and adjust the tierod, clockwise to increase toe, counterclockwise to decrease.


After 3 runs, I was able to adjust it perfectly. Talk about a ghetto alignment

As my steering wheel was cocked to the right, and when I held the wheel straight, the car will drifted left, I increased the toe slightly (about 2 threads) on the right wheel, and decreased toe for the left wheel.
* Registered users of the site do not see these ads.
Rev1 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-15-2004, 10:13 PM   #2
Psydotek
Scooby Guru
 
Member#: 44168
Join Date: Sep 2003
Chapter/Region: SCIC
Location: In your pant[ie]s.
Vehicle:
2003 Yellow WRX
with too many lights...

Default

Crap, i might have to do this tomorrow... My steering wheel is cocked ever so slightly to the right when i'm driving
Psydotek is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-15-2004, 10:32 PM   #3
Rev1
Scooby Specialist
 
Member#: 51240
Join Date: Dec 2003
Chapter/Region: MWSOC
Location: Chicago
Vehicle:
08 Lexus IS350
Black

Default

Yeah, pretty easy to do. Everyone I asked kept telling me "take it to the dealer"... I'd rather do it myself and it was so easy
Rev1 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-15-2004, 10:32 PM   #4
Psydotek
Scooby Guru
 
Member#: 44168
Join Date: Sep 2003
Chapter/Region: SCIC
Location: In your pant[ie]s.
Vehicle:
2003 Yellow WRX
with too many lights...

Default

Actually, i've got a clarification question... Since the Tie Rod is located forward of the drive shaft, you'd "decrease" the length to increase the toe-in and vice versa.

So since your car went left when the wheel was straight, you would shorten the driver side tie rod and lengthen the passenger side tie rod...

[all the clockwise/counter-clockwise stuff was confusing since it all would depend on how you look at the tierod... ]
Psydotek is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-15-2004, 10:39 PM   #5
Rev1
Scooby Specialist
 
Member#: 51240
Join Date: Dec 2003
Chapter/Region: MWSOC
Location: Chicago
Vehicle:
08 Lexus IS350
Black

Default

Well if you are crawling beneath the car (head first like I did)

Quote:
So since your car went left when the wheel was straight, you would shorten the driver side tie rod and lengthen the passenger side tie rod...
Yup. That's about it. A couple of threads increase/decrease makes a difference. I first made a large adjustment (3-4 threads) and made the car pull to the right. I did that so that I knew the "magnitude" of the adjustment.

So then I corrected a couple more times, and I got it exactly dead on center.
Rev1 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-16-2004, 03:53 PM   #6
TexasForester
Scooby Newbie
 
Member#: 59203
Join Date: Apr 2004
Location: Houston, TX
Vehicle:
1999 Forester
Black

Default

Just to be clear I understand, your complaint before adjustment was the wheel was cocked but the car tracked true, if the wheel was not loaded by driver? If wheel was forced to correct position, the car tracked left.

I'm no alignment guru, but I thought I understood that to correct a drift required adjustment of camber.

I've frequently had the problem of cocked steering wheel, but lived w/ it unless I had a drift. I can stand a cocked wheel better than a drift.

The reason I wanted to be sure was I want to try to correct a slight drift right in my wife's 99 Subara Forester.

Regards
TexasForester is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-16-2004, 04:12 PM   #7
Rev1
Scooby Specialist
 
Member#: 51240
Join Date: Dec 2003
Chapter/Region: MWSOC
Location: Chicago
Vehicle:
08 Lexus IS350
Black

Default

Before the toe alignment, with the wheel in the center position, the car drifted left.

So on a perfectly straight road with no crown, I had to hold the steering wheel slightly (3-4 degrees approx) to the right, to make the car track straight.

I don't think camber adjustment will make a difference in drift when your car is tracking straight.
Rev1 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-16-2004, 06:01 PM   #8
Psydotek
Scooby Guru
 
Member#: 44168
Join Date: Sep 2003
Chapter/Region: SCIC
Location: In your pant[ie]s.
Vehicle:
2003 Yellow WRX
with too many lights...

Default

Just finished adjusting it on my car and finally the steering wheel is straight. (was more like 1 or 1/2 a degree for me, but enough to notice).

Now if i can just get rid of the toe out... Any tips on measuring it short of taking it to a shop?
Psydotek is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-16-2004, 06:53 PM   #9
Rev1
Scooby Specialist
 
Member#: 51240
Join Date: Dec 2003
Chapter/Region: MWSOC
Location: Chicago
Vehicle:
08 Lexus IS350
Black

Default

It's not actually correcting toe if you adjusted both left and right tie rods equally, I think in this case the thrust angle will need to be corrected.

The last section of the front wheel alignment in the manual tells you how to correct thrust.
Rev1 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-18-2004, 10:09 PM   #10
Psydotek
Scooby Guru
 
Member#: 44168
Join Date: Sep 2003
Chapter/Region: SCIC
Location: In your pant[ie]s.
Vehicle:
2003 Yellow WRX
with too many lights...

Default

Well, looks like i'll be taking it to an alignment shop next week just to be sure. Steering wheel is straight and i've been tweeking it every day and keeping an eye on my tire wear to make sure the toe in/out isn't eating my tires.

It's a performance alignment shop but all the guys in the SCIC forum say he's the best. And for $85 (for the alignment and not per hour) it's cheaper than $150 at the dealer. I'll post up here when i get it done.
Psydotek is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-18-2004, 11:00 PM   #11
MYfirst00
Scooby Specialist
 
Member#: 22928
Join Date: Aug 2002
Chapter/Region: NESIC
Location: Fitchburg, MA
Vehicle:
2011 WRX
Satin White Pearl

Default

Kind of off topic: If you have the whiteline Anti-lift kit, do you need to mention that to the person doing the alignment because of the .5 degrees of negative castor?
MYfirst00 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-23-2004, 02:41 PM   #12
Evets76
Scooby Newbie
 
Member#: 62549
Join Date: May 2004
Vehicle:
2002 WRX

Default

Is there a way to adjust the steering wheel itself? I just had an alignment done, the car goes straight but the wheel is cocked at least 10 degrees to the right. Very annoying.
Evets76 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-23-2004, 04:14 PM   #13
Rev1
Scooby Specialist
 
Member#: 51240
Join Date: Dec 2003
Chapter/Region: MWSOC
Location: Chicago
Vehicle:
08 Lexus IS350
Black

Default

Quote:
Originally posted by Evets76
Is there a way to adjust the steering wheel itself? I just had an alignment done, the car goes straight but the wheel is cocked at least 10 degrees to the right. Very annoying.
Just follow my tips above. My wheel was cocked 5* approx, and that corrected it.
Rev1 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-23-2004, 05:56 PM   #14
Hayes
Scooby Specialist
 
Member#: 11808
Join Date: Oct 2001
Location: Cape Coral,FL
Default

If I paid for an alignment and the wheel was off center I'd take it back. That is the third thing a good alignment speciallist does after driving onto the rack and setting tire pressure. ed
Hayes is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-23-2004, 06:11 PM   #15
heffergm
Scooby Specialist
 
Member#: 34672
Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: Northern VA
Vehicle:
2003 wrx
WR Blue Pearl

Default

I got my car aligned, and the alignment sheet clearly indicated adjustments were correct, and the steering wheel centered.

Oddly though, at certain times, the sterring wheel is cocked to the left. I'm still having trouble deciding if it's because I'm running more negative camber in the front now, and I'm following the crown/camber of the road, or if it's really off.

At other times, it tracks perfectly fine.
heffergm is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-23-2004, 06:24 PM   #16
jlevy
Scooby Specialist
 
Member#: 15696
Join Date: Feb 2002
Location: Houston (clear lake)
Vehicle:
2007 Mini Cooper S
Dark Silver and White

Default

Quote:
Originally posted by heffergm
I got my car aligned, and the alignment sheet clearly indicated adjustments were correct, and the steering wheel centered.

Oddly though, at certain times, the sterring wheel is cocked to the left. I'm still having trouble deciding if it's because I'm running more negative camber in the front now, and I'm following the crown/camber of the road, or if it's really off.

At other times, it tracks perfectly fine.
Do you still have the stock rack bushings? If so, it sounds like memory steer.

-my 0.02
jlevy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-24-2004, 06:55 PM   #17
Lever2ooo
Scooby Specialist
 
Member#: 51708
Join Date: Jan 2004
Location: Kazahstan
Vehicle:
**** your hippy
****!!!

Default

WOW I AM SO DOING THIS SOON!!!!! mine is cocked like 5 degrees right
Lever2ooo is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-24-2004, 06:57 PM   #18
Rev1
Scooby Specialist
 
Member#: 51240
Join Date: Dec 2003
Chapter/Region: MWSOC
Location: Chicago
Vehicle:
08 Lexus IS350
Black

Default

Quote:
Originally posted by Lever2ooo
WOW I AM SO DOING THIS SOON!!!!! mine is cocked like 5 degrees right
Let me know if it works for you or not.
Rev1 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-24-2004, 07:49 PM   #19
heffergm
Scooby Specialist
 
Member#: 34672
Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: Northern VA
Vehicle:
2003 wrx
WR Blue Pearl

Default

Quote:
Originally posted by jlevy
Do you still have the stock rack bushings? If so, it sounds like memory steer.

-my 0.02
Yes, still the stock bushings. How difficult are they to replace with the whiteline versions?
heffergm is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-24-2004, 09:34 PM   #20
jlevy
Scooby Specialist
 
Member#: 15696
Join Date: Feb 2002
Location: Houston (clear lake)
Vehicle:
2007 Mini Cooper S
Dark Silver and White

Default whiteline rack bushing install time

It's not the kind of thing you can do with one hand tied behind your back, but it's not really that bad. There are several different methods (bending the p/s lines, not bending them, etc). I chose not to bend the p/s lines and it took maybe 1 to 1.5 hours.

-JL
jlevy is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Forum Jump

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Steering wheel alignment problem subaru_terrence Brakes, Steering & Suspension 3 03-23-2008 01:54 AM
Steering Wheel Alignment (Need Help!) Tunaboy Brakes, Steering & Suspension 1 12-11-2006 10:56 AM
Power Steering Lines are here...no more fires.. CBRDSpeedfactory Engine/Power/Exhaust 5 08-06-2005 03:47 PM
steering wheel alignment atotten Interior & Exterior Modification 7 07-10-2005 07:46 PM
Subaru vehicles and Wheel Alignment issues wwso Tire & Wheel 28 02-26-2004 01:17 AM


All times are GMT -4. The time now is 09:15 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.7.0
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Powered by Searchlight © 2014 Axivo Inc.
Copyright ©1999 - 2014, North American Subaru Impreza Owners Club, Inc.