Can’t Align Front End

Tiny
RANDY59
  • MEMBER
  • 1994 FORD TEMPO
  • 4 CYL
  • FWD
  • AUTOMATIC
  • 100 MILES
1994 Ford Tempo GL two door

My tempo sits low in the back. The tops of the rear tires are even with the wheel openings while the fronts are 3-4” below the openings. With the front end being higher the front wheels are severely tilted out at the top and both tires are wearing on the outside really badly.
I had a broken rear spring and replaced both with used springs and it didn’t help. Nothing seems strange; the springs and struts are all seated correctly and nothing is rusted or broken or bent. I don’t have a lot of weight in the trunk or anything simple like that. The rear end sag took place over time and didn’t happen suddenly.
Is there something weird about these cars that they do this? Has anyone else seen this problem on a Ford this age? My guess is that both rear springs are sagging badly. Does anyone have another idea, something else I can check? Thanks

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Wednesday, April 13th, 2011 AT 4:40 AM

3 Replies

Tiny
FIXITMR
  • MEMBER
Even if back is low it should not effect front. You must have wrong springs in front. The only way front could rise is if you were hauling something with hitch.
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Wednesday, April 13th, 2011 AT 5:08 AM
Tiny
CARADIODOC
  • EXPERT
That's the nature of the beast. Ford is famous for building cars that can't have the alignment corrected. It's good that you understand the importance of correct ride height but there's a lot more to the story with these cars. Typical "camber" for most cars is in the area of 1/4 to 1/2 degree. That's how much they lean out on top. Your car calls for over 2 degrees on the left wheel and about 1 3/4 for the right front. 1980s Ford-built Escorts were the same. That makes the tires run on the outer edges. They ride real smooth compared to other brands of cars. That's why they sold so many of them. What they didn't want you to know is 15,000 miles was about all you could get out of a set of tires.

Because of the strut design, there is no way to change front camber. The rear tires are tipped way in on top, but those can be corrected. The top of the two lower strut mounting bolts is replaced with one of a smaller diameter, then a wedge is placed between the strut and spindle. That lets you stand the tire up straighter and the wedge helps to hold it there when you hit pot holes.

The other thing to watch out for is broken outer tie rod ends. It's real common for them to separate a few hundred miles after they checked good. That's why we call them "killer cars".
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Wednesday, April 13th, 2011 AT 5:15 AM
Tiny
FIXITMR
  • MEMBER
Take some pics of problem and post them.
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Wednesday, April 13th, 2011 AT 5:52 AM

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