The car is a 1994,not hit any potholes or any thing that might knock out
alignment,mileage is 56,000 mi.,car lived entire life in Florida heat.
I do like to corner hard.
I could see bushings getting old considering the heat here.
had my civic aligned 7 or 8 times before i finally found someone who
could actually use the equipment properly. 4-wheel alignment on this
kind of suspension seems way beyond most people.
and apparently, the rear alignment spec is missing from a number of the
reference books used by the alignment shops - as evidenced by the last
guy that did mine. i was very specific about what i wanted and he came
back to say he couldn't do the rear like i'd asked because the book said
it was not adjustable. i knew the spec and showed him what to do, and
he did an excellent job after that, but seriously, if he was just
following the normal "book" alignment procedure, i'd have left the shop
with yet another bad alignment just like before.
now, i have great alignment, great handling and most important, even
tire wear. honda knew their business - these cars line up just great
when done right. oh, and one last thing. make sure the front is lined
up "both wheels straight ahead". good for tire wear and slightly better
cornering. i swear some shops like to give excess toe to increase tire
wear and get you back again sooner.
suspension is as stock as it was the day I brought it home from the dealer.
the back tires look new,only 20K miles on them,the fronts have about 3" of
bald area on the inside,outside is worn to the wear indicators.
I'm going to get the front suspension looked at.
Sounds like a definite camber problem... and definitely time to replace
the tires anyway, if you're down to the wear indicators. Get the
alignment checked and new tires put on all in one shot.
Oh, and despite the apparent good wear condition of the back tires,
you'll want to MAKE SURE they do a four-wheel alignment; it costs a
little more, but is critical on cars with four-wheel independant
suspension to ensure alignment is correct all the way around. Also, you
should consider rotating your tires on a regular basis, as front and
rear tires tires WILL wear differently, especially on a front-wheel
drive car; regular rotation will prevent one set from wearing out
significantly faster than the other, and give you more overall tire life.
Definitely sounds like alignment problem. If the wear is equal all the way
around the inner circumference of the tire (no hills and valleys so to
speak), then one or two adjustment angles are out of specs. Either camber
(top of tire leaning in toward the car too much) or toe is too far out. You
didn't mention any handling quirks so I would assume that camber is the
problem, predominately. Another check is to closely examine the tire wear
and look for "feathering" toward the outer edge of the tire. Caused by the
tire sliding while it is rolling. This would indicate a toe problem. I would
have thought that you would have felt some steering and handling problem if
this was the case however. Time for an alignment. Be sure the shop
thoroughly inspects the front end for worn, wearing, or damaged parts before
doing the alignment. Cheers.
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