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Old 09-23-2008, 11:39 AM   #1
nuheriot
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Default SL2 pulling left slightly

I changed out all four struts this weekend and had an alignment done this morning. On top of the alignment I had a new driver's side front tire mounted (previous one had a nail in it). The existing tires were just put on the car 2 months ago so they are hardly worn.

While driving into work (highway) I noticed that the car was pulling very slightly to the left. When turning to the left on the highway if I let go of the wheel it tends to stay partially to the left. When turning to the right if I let go of the wheel it tends to straighten itself out. I called Goodyear and they said that a bad alignment won't cause that to happen and said that it sounds like a bad strut mount bearing. I replaced all 4 strut mounts when I changed the struts. Anyone have any ideas? Should I post my alignment results? Would a new drivers side front tire cause this to happen?

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Old 09-23-2008, 11:57 AM   #2
OldNuc
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1998 SC2
Default Re: SL2 pulling left slightly

A new tire and a slightly used tire can cause things like that. As will a dorked up alignment.

So, switch the 2 front tires left to right and see if the problem moves to the right side.

Are the rear tires the same age and brand/type as teh slightly used front one?

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Old 09-23-2008, 12:04 PM   #3
nuheriot
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Default Re: SL2 pulling left slightly

Yup, all tires are the same; 3 are 2 months old and then the front left is brand new. The tires are directional, should I still swap the tires, temporarily, to see if that is the cause?

Is it easy to dork up an alignment using the fancy reflector alignment system most shops use? What are the recommended ranges for a 96 SL2 alignment? I have the printout but it is only partial and I am not sure I am reading it correctly. It only printed the numbers, not titles, headings, descriptions, etc. Just numbers.

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Old 09-24-2008, 07:40 AM   #4
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Default Re: SL2 pulling left slightly

if the aligment is up to spec, then u may have a rack (rack & pinion) problem. a seal or o-ring may be failing causing the rack to want to steer left. souunds more like a caster problem with the left strut alignment.

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Old 09-24-2008, 10:59 AM   #5
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Default Re: SL2 pulling left slightly

You are more likely than not, NOT going to get an alignment right on the first try. Most consumers will just 'live with' a slight pull and expect it, so shops rush. If you don't have a print out of your alignment, you have no idea what they did or did not set properly. Get a print out next time. And bring the car back to have the alignment re checked and explain the pull-- they are responsible for the work within the period that the shop warrantees it.

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Old 09-24-2008, 11:10 AM   #6
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Default Re: SL2 pulling left slightly

I plan on going back to the shop to have them check it just to make sure it is all good.

Here is what they gave me as my alignment results. Without the full printout I am not sure what numbers mean what.
Attached Files
File Type: pdf 9-23 alignment data.pdf (16.5 KB, 24 views)

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Old 09-24-2008, 12:19 PM   #7
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Default Re: SL2 pulling left slightly

Quote:
Originally Posted by nuheriot View Post
I plan on going back to the shop to have them check it just to make sure it is all good.

Here is what they gave me as my alignment results. Without the full printout I am not sure what numbers mean what.
You can put the new tire on the rear and one of the rears on the front. Be sure that they still rotate in the proper direction.

These are the real alignment specifications. Print them out for show and tell.

If an Alignment Is Performed

Front

Camber:
Preferred Setting -0.50
Minimum -1.20
Maximum +0.20

Cross Camber:
Preferred Setting 0.00
Minimum -0.40
Maximum +0.40

Caster:
Preferred Setting +1.70
Minimum +1.10
Maximum +2.30

Cross Caster:
Preferred Setting 0.00
Minimum -0.40
Maximum +0.40

Toe (Per Wheel):
Preferred Setting +0.10
Minimum 0.05
Maximum +0.15

Total Toe:
Preferred Setting +0.20
Minimum +0.10
Maximum +0.30

Rear

Camber:
Preferred Setting -0.70
Minimum -1.40
Maximum 0.00

Cross Camber:
Preferred Setting 0.00
Minimum -1.00
Maximum +1.00

Toe (Per Wheel):
Preferred Setting +0.10
Minimum +0.05
Maximum +0.15

Total Toe:
Preferred Setting +0.20
Minimum +0.10
Maximum +0.30

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Old 01-28-2009, 03:07 AM   #8
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Default Re: SL2 pulling left slightly

Quote:
Originally Posted by OldNuc View Post
These are the real alignment specifications. Print them out for show and tell.

If an Alignment Is Performed

Front

Camber:
Preferred Setting -0.50
Minimum -1.20
Maximum +0.20

Caster:
Preferred Setting +1.70
Minimum +1.10
Maximum +2.30


Rear

Camber:
Preferred Setting -0.70
Minimum -1.40
Maximum 0.00

Are these the same for 92 SC DOHC?
TiresPlus is using different specs for camber. --JustTires matches these specs.


TiresPlus (vs. JustTires):

Front
Camber:
Minimum -0.9 -1.20
Maximum +0.5 +0.20


Rear

Camber:
Minimum -1.70 -1.40
Maximum +0.3 0.00


For Caster they are using the same slightly different numbers than here:
Caster:
Minimum +1.20 +1.10
Maximum +2.20 +2.30


My car is outside range of one's camber but not the other's. Also the numbers they read are quite different in some cases. TiresPlus where I have the warranty is the one that said the camber & caster can't be adjusted.

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Old 01-28-2009, 07:37 AM   #9
Fox Slaughter
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1998 SC2
1996 SL2
Default Re: SL2 pulling left slightly

If I'm not mistaken isn't the car suppose to pull slightly to the right? This is in case you fall asleep driving you don't veer into on coming traffic?

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Old 01-28-2009, 11:40 AM   #10
nuheriot
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Default Re: SL2 pulling left slightly

I think the issue is the slope of the section of highway that I notice the pull on. All road drains are in the median, between E and W lanes so either side of the highway slopes to the left. On open sections of what appears to be flat, straight highway the steering stays true.

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Old 01-31-2009, 01:41 AM   #11
curls
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Default Re: SL2 pulling left slightly

Quote:
Originally Posted by curls View Post
Are these the same for 92 SC DOHC?
TiresPlus is using different specs for camber. --JustTires matches these specs.
The numbers OldNuc posted & JustTires uses are correct. Another TiresPlus also uses those numbers. So I hit an error in a specific shop. Saturn dealer gave me matching numbers pulling them from ALLDATA database. TiresPlus uses Hunter equip & they provide the specs.

So now I have an appt at a different TiresPlus...with the tech who went out of his way to answer my specs questions. Fingers crossed.

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