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  1. #1
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    Default replacing control arm/does it require another alignment?

    So today I had a complete alignment performed on my 2000 focus. Previously, the car pulled to the right and the steering wheel was extremely crooked. After the alignment was performed by the shop, I was told there still would be a slight pull due to the right lower control arm's bushings needing replacement.
    My question is, if i went ahead and replaced the entire control arm w/the new bushings and ball-joint, would I need to have another alignment performed?

  2. #2
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    Default Re: replacing control arm/does it require another alignment?

    you've been had...

    no need for another alignment, unless the old arm was actually bent

  3. #3
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    Default Re: replacing control arm/does it require another alignment?

    Replace the lower control arm and get another alignment (at another shop if you feel this shop wasn't totally forthcoming).

    I disagree with post #2 for the following reason: It would seem that it would be difficult to adjust to correct toe-in if the lower ball joint can move back and forth because of slop at the inside end of the arm.
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  4. #4
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    Default Re: replacing control arm/does it require another alignment?

    the OP said bushings, not balljoint.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: replacing control arm/does it require another alignment?

    If you're going to argue with me about it, I'll repeat it for you...

    It would be difficult to adjust to correct toe-in if the lower ball joint can move back and forth because of slop at the inside end of the arm.
    .
    "Wine tasting isn't bad, but given the choice, I'd rather drink left-over beer and replace brake pads." - OmniFocus

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  6. #6
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    Default Re: replacing control arm/does it require another alignment?

    I believe that you will need an alignment if you replace your control arm.

    Depending on the milage you have on the vehicle, I find it kinda hard to believe that the bushings are shot. Go to a good shop for an alignment. You may pay a little more initally, but it will save you hassles in the long run.

    Unless you actually have something bent, or bad tires there shouldnt be a pull after an alignment. Also there should never be a reason that your steering wheel is crooked after an alignment as long as nothing is bent.
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  7. #7
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    Default Re: replacing control arm/does it require another alignment?

    Quote Originally Posted by SVTADAM
    I believe that you will need an alignment if you replace your control arm.

    Depending on the milage you have on the vehicle, I find it kinda hard to believe that the bushings are shot. Go to a good shop for an alignment. You may pay a little more initally, but it will save you hassles in the long run.

    Unless you actually have something bent, or bad tires there shouldnt be a pull after an alignment. Also there should never be a reason that your steering wheel is crooked after an alignment as long as nothing is bent.
    SVTADAM, i agree with you. I inspected the bushings later today to see if they looked bad and as i was getting ready to pull the front tires off to do so, i was horrified at what i found instead. I saw that of the 4 brand-spanking-new tires i just had mounted 3 months ago, the 2 front ones were almost completely worn down!! i have seriously only put less than 3k on these tires and it was obviously the bad shape of my alignment that ate them up pre-maturely. It definitely explains why it still pulled a little after they fixed the alignment. I wish the alignment shop had mentioned this to me when i picked up the car today.
    Anyway, I just got done rotating the bald tires to the back and put the still like-new rears to the front. I am just completely bummed that I basically just flushed a couple of hundred dollars down the toilet, simply by neglecting to have it aligned right when i got the new set of 4. So let this be a lessen to anyone who is suffering from any kind of alignment problem and is looking to get new tires. Align it asap before or after you get those new tires put on. Thanks for the info guys!

  8. #8
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    Default Re: replacing control arm/does it require another alignment?

    Quote Originally Posted by Z63R
    If you're going to argue with me about it, I'll repeat it for you...

    It would be difficult to adjust to correct toe-in if the lower ball joint can move back and forth because of slop at the inside end of the arm.
    pooooooop i should read the whole post instead of stopping when i read balljoint please excuse me oh master of all things Focus

    either way the mechanic is very vague, "needs to be replaced" could mean a lot of things and does not necessarily mean "slop" it could mean "frozen"

    if they were just frozen then there is no need for an alignment, this is what I imagine was wrong with the bushings, the design of the control arm bushings is not really conducive to developing slop

    if there was slop then yes alignment would be required, in fact they should not have charged you since its impossible to align a car with slop in any of the joints


    its all up to the vague statement of the mechanic here theres no grounds for an arguement without more info (not that i want to make one, just saying theres really no point to one without more info about the bushings)

  9. #9
    Official [FJ] Distinguished Advisor Z63R's Avatar
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    Default Re: replacing control arm/does it require another alignment?

    I agree with you; the whole alignment issue in not only vague, it smells funny.


    I was basing my reply to his problem based on bushing replacement due to slop, since the bushings in that area are a harder-durometer rubber and could have been damaged previously in an accident or unplanned off-road excursion.

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  10. #10
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    Default Re: replacing control arm/does it require another alignment?

    off-road excursion?


  11. #11
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    Default Re: replacing control arm/does it require another alignment?

    off-road excursion?
    No...


    unplanned off-road excursion


    .
    "Wine tasting isn't bad, but given the choice, I'd rather drink left-over beer and replace brake pads." - OmniFocus

    2.3 Duratec ZX3 + some bits

  12. #12
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    Default Re: replacing control arm/does it require another alignment?

    ^^^I wonder if his "Do a barrel roll" light went on?
    The Garage: ARIA#1211: 2002 SVTF, JASMINE#1062: 2004 SVTF Euro,
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  13. #13
    Official [FJ] Distinguished Advisor Z63R's Avatar
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    Default Re: replacing control arm/does it require another alignment?

    ^ Win!
    .
    "Wine tasting isn't bad, but given the choice, I'd rather drink left-over beer and replace brake pads." - OmniFocus

    2.3 Duratec ZX3 + some bits


 

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