You’re finishing up a shock or strut replacement on a customer’s vehicle and everything seems all set. Before you return the vehicle to the customer, however, there is a final step you need to complete to ensure a successful repair. Monroe® recommends performing an alignment anytime struts or other steering and suspension components are replaced. Failure to make sure the vehicle’s alignment is within factory specifications can lead to problems like premature tire wear and other customer comebacks.
Camber, the vertical angle – inward or outward – of the tires, can be affected by installing new struts. If the alignment isn’t adjusted back to manufacturer specifications, the customer could end up with uneven tire wear.
Toe and caster settings can also be affected. Toe is the angle at which the tires turn in or out when viewed from above, while caster is the forward or backward angle of the steering axis as viewed from the side of the car. If the toe setting is significantly off, it can cause rapid tire wear while the wrong caster setting can make it hard to keep the vehicle on a straight course.
There are a few exceptions to this alignment advice - situations where the vehicle manufacturer does not provide alignment provisions or where the alignment angles are not affected by a strut replacement. Examples include certain double wishbone, some modified type struts, and suspension systems which utilize shock absorbers. For more detailed information, contact your local service professional or the Garage Gurus On-Call! Technical Line at 800-325-8886.
The content contained in this article is for informational purposes only and should not be used in lieu of seeking professional advice from a certified technician or mechanic. We encourage you to consult with a certified technician or mechanic if you have specific questions or concerns relating to any of the topics covered herein. Under no circumstances will we be liable for any loss or damage caused by your reliance on any content.