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Uneven Tyre Wear On A Fixed Camber Suspension.


CJ5
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Dear experts,

There is uneven tyre wear on the inner side of both rear tyres on a Jap Alto (H23S, 2004 model), which has a fixed camber. The allignment guys could not find any damage to the suspension as a probable cause. The vehicle has been very carefully used, never overloaded and always run on Colombo roads.

The allignment guys said it might be a problem with the "radius arm/s" or it could be that the rear coil spring has lost its tension and gone down a bit resulting in the negative camber and ultimate uneven wear.

An opinion from you guys would be helpful to get to the root of the problem. :)

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Were they positive that the cause is camber ? If both the wheels are affected I doubt it's due to suspension damage. May be something is worn out. Also if you look from a little distance you should be able to see if the camber is wrong.

If the camber is the cause and nothing seems bent / worn out, you can try camber bolts. Or else in some cars you can change the camber a bit by loosening the bolts that attaches the shock to the wheel and pulling it a bit and then re-tightening (if the bolt hole has enough play).and some good places uses hydraulic/ pneumatic pullers to adjust the camber a bit and I've had good results with them,

I think if you could show the car to another place like car care (wellawatte) they will be able to point you in the right direction. From my experience most of the computerized places only adjust the toe and don't have a clue of what to do if their machine show something is wrong - but it is not-adjustable in the car.

Edited by Amila G
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Were they positive that the cause is camber ? If both the wheels are affected I doubt it's due to suspension damage. May be something is worn out. Also if you look from a little distance you should be able to see if the camber is wrong.

If the camber is the cause and nothing seems bent / worn out, you can try camber bolts. Or else in some cars you can change the camber a bit by loosening the bolts that attaches the shock to the wheel and pulling it a bit and then re-tightening (if the bolt hole has enough play).and some good places uses hydraulic/ pneumatic pullers to adjust the camber a bit and I've had good results with them,

I think if you could show the car to another place like car care (wellawatte) they will be able to point you in the right direction. From my experience most of the computerized places only adjust the toe and don't have a clue of what to do if their machine show something is wrong - but it is not-adjustable in the car.

Thanks!

Yes, when I get back a few feet keeping the car on a level surface the rear wheels can be seen at a slightly negative camber. There is nothing seen to be bent or damaged. One of the hub racers was replaced due to a hum the other was also checked and is ok.

The Alto has a rigid axle in the rear with separate coil springs and shocks (not struts) so there are no camber bolts as such and cannot be adjusted.

Carcare Wella did the allignments on another vehicle and I found that it was not very good. The owner I hear is quite competent but its the ordinary golayas who now do the job and the owner sits inside his a/c office relaxing!!! There is a place at Walana Panadura which has quite a good reputation for allignments going by the large clientele queing up from 6.30am everyday!!! They use a time tested mechanical method for the allignments and I have had absolutely no complaints about their work.

Edited by CJ5
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Thanks!

Yes, when I get back a few feet keeping the car on a level surface the rear wheels can be seen at a slightly negative camber. There is nothing seen to be bent or damaged. One of the hub racers was replaced due to a hum the other was also checked and is ok.

The Alto has a rigid axle in the rear with separate coil springs and shocks (not struts) so there are no camber bolts as such and cannot be adjusted.

Carcare Wella did the allignments on another vehicle and I found that it was not very good. The owner I hear is quite competent but its the ordinary golayas who now do the job and the owner sits inside his a/c office relaxing!!! There is a place at Walana Panadura which has quite a good reputation for allignments going by the large clientele queing up from 6.30am everyday!!! They use a time tested mechanical method for the allignments and I have had absolutely no complaints about their work.

Hmm well I have no complaints about car care, yes I go to the walana place too (they solved a strange camber issue in my car which no one else could figure out )but I need to get a half a day leave to go there so I just hop into car care during office time if there's no major issues with alignment :). Btw couldn't the Walana guys sort out your issue ?

Are you running on non standard wheel / tire sizes by any chance ?

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:). Btw couldn't the Walana guys sort out your issue ?

Are you running on non standard wheel / tire sizes by any chance ?

No. Their suspicion was that it was either the "radius arm" or the coil springs which they advised was a mechanics job. My mechanic is yet to check it out. Tyres are the standard 155/12.

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The walana guys are excellent. Fixed a camber issue in the civic when I put in rear discs as well. Have a good mechanic take a look at it. Even the Teg is fixed camber and one of my upper arms in front was bent from an accident. Replaced all 4 upper arms eventually with adjustable camber ones. Aftermarket parts are dirt cheap tho

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CJ5, I hv a similar issue as well with the front inners wearing out slightly. My car has factory set negative camber on the rears but that doesn't affect the rear tyres at all.The fronts are not supposed to hv any camber setting so I'm not too sure it's a worn out part causing a toe-out, maybe? Planning to take it to the Walana guys to get it checked out as 2 places that did alignment at different times did not provide a satisfactory answer.

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Thanks!

Yes, when I get back a few feet keeping the car on a level surface the rear wheels can be seen at a slightly negative camber. There is nothing seen to be bent or damaged. One of the hub racers was replaced due to a hum the other was also checked and is ok.

The Alto has a rigid axle in the rear with separate coil springs and shocks (not struts) so there are no camber bolts as such and cannot be adjusted.

Carcare Wella did the allignments on another vehicle and I found that it was not very good. The owner I hear is quite competent but its the ordinary golayas who now do the job and the owner sits inside his a/c office relaxing!!! There is a place at Walana Panadura which has quite a good reputation for allignments going by the large clientele queing up from 6.30am everyday!!! They use a time tested mechanical method for the allignments and I have had absolutely no complaints about their work.

No complaints about car care either. I went there last December and they did a really good job with my car. I took some special bolts to do the camber adjustment on my front wheels and my rear wheels have camber adjustment there from the factory.

You might not have adjustment bolts but if the geometry is slightly out places like car care can try to correct it using a hydraulic puller.

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CJ5, I hv a similar issue as well with the front inners wearing out slightly. My car has factory set negative camber on the rears but that doesn't affect the rear tyres at all.The fronts are not supposed to hv any camber setting so I'm not too sure it's a worn out part causing a toe-out, maybe? Planning to take it to the Walana guys to get it checked out as 2 places that did alignment at different times did not provide a satisfactory answer.

The problem is thanks to our pot holed roads the arms and mounts get bent, and especially when things like bushes get replaced rather than the entire arm, the job is never perfect. This makes the suspension geometry go slightly out so you need to sometimes correct the camber the old fashioned way. Try the place in Walana or Car Care. Most other places just stare at computers and tell you other things are not adjustable. They have no idea what they are doing.

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Thanks guys for your views!

As there is nothing visible my mechanic, after speaking to the Walana guys as well, suggested that we take out the rear axle assembly and check the whole thing out from the mounting anchors on the body.

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