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Ever used Firestone for front end alignment?

This is a discussion on Ever used Firestone for front end alignment? within the General Help forums, part of the LSx Technical Help Section category; After installing my rack last week. I took it to Firestone for the alignment. For the 1st time since the ...

  1. #1
    Member 79Firebird_99TA's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2007

    99 Trans Am

    Ever used Firestone for front end alignment?

    After installing my rack last week. I took it to Firestone for the alignment. For the 1st time since the alignment, I put it on the highway to go to work and found myself working too hard to drive the TA; she is pulling to the right. So I call Firestone and they said that they only adjusted the toe in and are not capable of doing the camber and caster. I called another local shop (Kauffman Tire) and they said the same thing but would be willing to check it for free. Both said that I should take it to the dealership since it requires a special tool to do the camber and caster.

    I'm curious to hear other's experience with front end alignments and if this sounds right that I'm hearing from two shops.

    Also I have the Firestone Firehawks. I'm not real impressed. I've had them for about a year and both L side tires developed a bulge at the outer sidewall. Firestone pro-rated 2 tires, but I wanted the same tread depth on each axle so I them dismount one on the R and remount so that I could move it to the L side. Well I tend to wonder if the pull could also be related to that. Thoughts? I think I liked the G-Force Sport tires better.

  2. #2
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2009

    1980 Z28

    They are somewhat correct. There is a special tool to set the caster/camber, but it can be done without the tool. You can lift the wheel up in the air (while still on the alignment rack) and set caster/camber without the tool but then you have to lower the wheel back down to take another reading on the alignment machine. It takes a while to get it right doing it this way. The tool just makes it easier to adjust caster/camber while the car is on the rack. I had to play with the adjustments on my 99Z28 to get it to track correctly. When things were right in the center of the alignment, it would pull to the right. Also, the rear wheel alignment can cause the car to pull. These is no adjustment in a straight axle, but you can use shims behind the backing plate to correct a rear alignment issue.

    You probably need to find a shop who will take the time to do a complete alignment. Most places just want to do a quickie tow setting and get you in/out the door.

  3. #3
    Smiles for 9.5 Years cammed goat's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Paterson/Ridgewood, NJ

    Phantom Black Metallic
    2004 GTO M6

    You could be experiencing what is called "radial pull" where a tire causes the vehicle to wander to one side despite a proper alignment. You could also be experiencing the result of "road crown" where wider vehicles wander to one side due to the road's "crowning" to allow for rainwater to run off toward the curb. That is unavoidable in some vehicles. Find a shop that specializes in alignments and see if they'll install an eccentric kit to allow for camber/caster adjustments. They might also have to slot the strut mounts as well.

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