Honda Civic 2009 - Wheel alignment (tracking) - am I going mad? - Trawlerman
Hi guys

Been working on my Honda Civic that I’ve just bought (mini-project car).

Had the front-wheel tracking fixed today - one of the settings was apparently 8mm before they fixed it. (I guess it was the toe, which is meant to be between zero and 2mm or something). So pretty drastic.

Steering feels a lot better at low speeds now but still not ‘perfect’.

Questions:

1. Should I get the tracking done on the rear wheels / 4 wheels? I always assumed that was a bit of a waste of money if the front wheels are ok?

2. Is it true that Civic steering tends to feel a bit heavy anyway? Is this just because, like the guy told me today, a lot of Honda’s seem to way out with their tracking (more so than other makes)?

3. Am I going mad or does there always seem to be a bit of a delay, maybe a few hours driving time (this is on any make/model), between (a) the tracking being fixed and (b) you actually feeling the full benefit when driving? It’s almost like it takes a while after the fix, for everything to slot into its rightful place.

4. The guys checked the brake discs, which are apparently a bit corroded on the lip. Am I right this wouldn’t be relevant to the steering being heavy at low speeds? I think the brakes would cause a different symptom like shaking in the steering wheel, which I haven’t got.

Cheers
Paul
Honda Civic 2009 - Wheel alignment (tracking) - am I going mad? - bolt
Hi guys Been working on my Honda Civic that I’ve just bought (mini-project car). Had the front-wheel tracking fixed today - one of the settings was apparently 8mm before they fixed it. (I guess it was the toe, which is meant to be between zero and 2mm or something). So pretty drastic. Steering feels a lot better at low speeds now but still not ‘perfect’. Questions: 1. Should I get the tracking done on the rear wheels / 4 wheels? I always assumed that was a bit of a waste of money if the front wheels are ok? 2. Is it true that Civic steering tends to feel a bit heavy anyway? Is this just because, like the guy told me today, a lot of Honda’s seem to way out with their tracking (more so than other makes)? 3. Am I going mad or does there always seem to be a bit of a delay, maybe a few hours driving time (this is on any make/model), between (a) the tracking being fixed and (b) you actually feeling the full benefit when driving? It’s almost like it takes a while after the fix, for everything to slot into its rightful place. 4. The guys checked the brake discs, which are apparently a bit corroded on the lip. Am I right this wouldn’t be relevant to the steering being heavy at low speeds? I think the brakes would cause a different symptom like shaking in the steering wheel, which I haven’t got. Cheers Paul

It is better to get 4 wheel alignment done but not always depends on rear tyre wear.

I have owned 5 civics since 2010 and they have all felt a tad heavy but only at low speed.

No not always out, it can depend on the tyres on it, I`m not in favour of the very low profile tyres and have changed mine on a couple of civics for not so low profile.

You should feel the difference straight away unless the suspension has taken a hit but they are sturdy

I have corroded discs but no problem braking and just passed an MOT my Civic is 2008 only bought it 3 months ago though its needed tidying in that all tyres were different makes. punctured. and cracked.

Ps never had fronts last longer than 15k miles

Edited by bolt on 26/10/2020 at 20:41

Honda Civic 2009 - Wheel alignment (tracking) - am I going mad? - Trawlerman
Excellent - thanks a lot.

Yes 5 Civics means it can’t be a coincidence that they are all a bit heavy.

Cheers I will look at the tyres next. It was a tyre place I went to today but they didn’t mention any issues with the tyres themselves (except that the depths are all ok), even though the wheel misalignment must have affected them a bit.
Honda Civic 2009 - Wheel alignment (tracking) - am I going mad? - bathtub tom

Does it have adjustment on the rear suspension? Not many 'bread-n-butter' cars do (other than a damn great hammer).

Honda Civic 2009 - Wheel alignment (tracking) - am I going mad? - bolt
Excellent - thanks a lot. Yes 5 Civics means it can’t be a coincidence that they are all a bit heavy. Cheers I will look at the tyres next. It was a tyre place I went to today but they didn’t mention any issues with the tyres themselves (except that the depths are all ok), even though the wheel misalignment must have affected them a bit.

honda.automotive-manuals.com/civic-2006-2009/A00/H...l

HTHs

Edited by bolt on 26/10/2020 at 23:19

Honda Civic 2009 - Wheel alignment (tracking) - am I going mad? - Trawlerman
Excellent - thanks a lot. Yes 5 Civics means it can’t be a coincidence that they are all a bit heavy. Cheers I will look at the tyres next. It was a tyre place I went to today but they didn’t mention any issues with the tyres themselves (except that the depths are all ok), even though the wheel misalignment must have affected them a bit.

honda.automotive-manuals.com/civic-2006-2009/A00/H...l

HTHs

Cheers
Honda Civic 2009 - Wheel alignment (tracking) - am I going mad? - edlithgow

3. Am I going mad or does there always seem to be a bit of a delay, maybe a few hours driving time (this is on any make/model), between (a) the tracking being fixed and (b) you actually feeling the full benefit when driving? It’s almost like it takes a while after the fix, for everything to slot into its rightful place.

Dunno. Maybe the tyre surface takes a "set" and has to wear-in to the new alignment. Seems a bit subtle, but then some of this kind of stuff is, and it would sort of fit the timescale.

Honda Civic 2009 - Wheel alignment (tracking) - am I going mad? - Trawlerman

3. Am I going mad or does there always seem to be a bit of a delay, maybe a few hours driving time (this is on any make/model), between (a) the tracking being fixed and (b) you actually feeling the full benefit when driving? It’s almost like it takes a while after the fix, for everything to slot into its rightful place.

Dunno. Maybe the tyre surface takes a "set" and has to wear-in to the new alignment. Seems a bit subtle, but then some of this kind of stuff is, and it would sort of fit the timescale.

Thanks. I couldn’t find anything online about anyone else experiencing this.
Honda Civic 2009 - Wheel alignment (tracking) - am I going mad? - bolt

3. Am I going mad or does there always seem to be a bit of a delay, maybe a few hours driving time (this is on any make/model), between (a) the tracking being fixed and (b) you actually feeling the full benefit when driving? It’s almost like it takes a while after the fix, for everything to slot into its rightful place.

Dunno. Maybe the tyre surface takes a "set" and has to wear-in to the new alignment. Seems a bit subtle, but then some of this kind of stuff is, and it would sort of fit the timescale.

Thanks. I couldn’t find anything online about anyone else experiencing this.

Only time I have actually noticed any difference in ease of steering is after renewing tyres, the new ones being better (in most cases) make steering lighter without drifting as certain tyres can, Dunlop and Michelin I found the worst for this.

though some drivers do not notice any difference, but after fitting Bridgestone to mine (friend recommended for wet weather and quiet) they were better than factory fitted Michelins, so stick with them now.... no regrets yet

Honda Civic 2009 - Wheel alignment (tracking) - am I going mad? - John F

Only time I have actually noticed any difference in ease of steering is after renewing tyres, the new ones being better (in most cases) make steering lighter...

Possibly because the old tyres were under pressurised and the new ones inflated well above recommended psi by the tyre mechanic?

Honda Civic 2009 - Wheel alignment (tracking) - am I going mad? - Andrew-T
Should I get the tracking done on the rear wheels / 4 wheels?
Am I right this wouldn’t be relevant to the steering being heavy at low speeds?

I had my 25-year-old car checked last year and all 4 wheels were done, with apparently computerised printout. Thinking back (not very long in my case) to the days of unassisted steering, it's only during slow manoeuvres that steering is noticeably heavy. What can vary between models is the amount of assistance the car provides - some are more 'generous' than others, but some drivers like to have more feedback.

Honda Civic 2009 - Wheel alignment (tracking) - am I going mad? - gordonbennet

Don't forget to jack the front end up and check all joints are free moving, a seizing ball joint can give some unpleasant handling, also seeing as its a Honda (most Japanese cars suffer) make sure the brakes are free moving with nothing sticking whilst there.

If the tyres have worn unevenly the car will feel strange on the steering and this may never change, might be worth a swap front to back if the rears have worn normally.

An interesting check for poor geometry, remember caster and camber differences also apply, is to drive along the road with one side of the car running on a solid white painted line, you can do this both sides with care, usually there's less grip on the paint so if the car wants to pull you off the line with any appreciable force it could indicate wheel geometry or joints need checking out.

Note if there is any suspension bush wear as speed increases the forces exerted on bushes mean they move more than designed for so a perfectly aligned car can become very misaligned (usually toeing out) at speed, this was an issue on cars as different as Ford Sierra and BMW 3 series, you can judge bush wear quite well by trying to move the car forward and backwards (park brake applied) by trying to rotate the front wheels, if the wheels show appreciable lateral movement inside the wheelarch then you have worn bushes.

Edited by gordonbennet on 27/10/2020 at 12:24

Honda Civic 2009 - Wheel alignment (tracking) - am I going mad? - bolt

Something gordenbennet has reminded me of is front dampers are a common failure on these, they stiffen or if you get one that does, it causes problems with steering, just a thought...

Honda Civic 2009 - Wheel alignment (tracking) - am I going mad? - gordonbennet

Something gordenbennet has reminded me of is front dampers are a common failure on these, they stiffen or if you get one that does, it causes problems with steering, just a thought...

Top mounts too if daughter's several Civics are anything to go by.

Honda Civic 2009 - Wheel alignment (tracking) - am I going mad? - madf

Something gordenbennet has reminded me of is front dampers are a common failure on these, they stiffen or if you get one that does, it causes problems with steering, just a thought...

Top mounts too if daughter's several Civics are anything to go by.

Read that as well..

A quick spay with thein lubricating oil/WD40 may be worth while to see if it makes any change.

 

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