Rear camber 2001 Impala LS

My 2001 Impala LS has 69K miles on it. My wife drives the car daily, and has been complaining about a 'wobble' in the ride/steering. I forve the car Sunday, and it seemed fine to me, but I decided to take
it in to my local Goodyear. I have had good service from this local Goodyear store for the past 10 years, and buy my tires and shocks from this store.
Anyhow, they call today and say that all tires required balance, and the only problem they can find with this car is that the rear camber is off. They claim one side is off 0.9 degrees, and the other side is off 1.0 degrees. The spec is +/- 0.5 degrees MAX. They want $252.51 to install a camber adjust kit and re-ailgn all four wheels.
After discussing this with the manager, he did disclose that this is just a handling and tire wear issue, not wobble. He was 'firm' in saying I was out of spec, but did not say one way, or the other on this repair. I decided to decline the repair because I have NEVER had a good alignment, and this car seems to track straight as an arrow (I had my LeBaron convertible aligned once, and it took a year of adjusting to get it back to track straight).
So, comments, and opinons appreciated!
Take care,
Bill
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billccm wrote:

Hi Bill...
Not a mechanic, just an old long retired electrical guy who loves cars - so take what I say with a grain of salt... but...
I had something similar a number of years back, in a full size Pontiac wagon. After months of frustration, all kinds of work (and huge bills) it turned out to be an intermittently twisted belt in one of the tires.
Very very difficult to find, 'cause as soon as you jack'ed (or hoisted) it off the ground the twisted belt would flip back to its normal position. Everytime.
Suggestion if I may? How 'bout replacing the tires one at a time with full sized spares and see how it goes. If you have a neighbor with a similar wheel you might even try it two at a time.
And in hindsight - not sure if it would work or not, but seems a worthwhile experiment - how 'bout following your wife down a dead straight even chunk of road at varying speeds, see if you can't see it?
Take care.
Ken
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Warped rotors and hung calipers will cause this - though it is generally most pronounced with braking from higher speeds.
--

-Mike-
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If you don't believe the mechanic that your alignment is out, get a second opinion from another shop.
Steve
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"billccm" wrote

It would be interesting to get the actual readings that they had. The numbers you mention don't really make sense. The specs on the Impala at the rear wheels for camber are "preferred" -.5 but "allowable is -1.0 degrees. So anything between -.5 and -1.0 is fine.
You also do not need a "camber adjust" kit on these vehicles. The factory method of adjusting camber is to simply "slot" the struts and adjust. I've done many of these...it's not that difficult to do if it's needed.
Remember, if anyone throws your vehicle on an alignment rack and then tries to sell you something.....get the printout from the alignment machine if you are not sure about what they are trying to sell you. Sounds to me like your original complaint will "not" be addressed by an alignment.
Ian
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