The alignment in my car is off

  • 137,500 MILES
The alignment in my car is off. The mechanic cannot fix it without replacing a rod at the back and a tie rod at the front. They have given me a quote of ~$500 to fix this. I just bought new Kumho tires 3 months back and dont plan to put any more money in the car. Need to sell it in a year or so.
If I rotate the tires every 2-3 months, drive about 10K miles/yr in the suburbs, and continue with the bad alignment, how soon can I expect the tires to get worn out? I drive carefully, but we do get a lot of snow.
Can I get atleast 15K miles on them? The tires have a warranty of 60K but I am not interested in shelling out another $500 to protect my warranty.
Sunday, March 17th, 2013 AT 11:34 PM

1 Reply

"Out-of-alignment" can mean a lot of different things. Some things can be serious. Many things are not. Some things affect the wear on just that one tire. Some problems with one tire will cause wear patterns on both tires on that axle.

A worn tie rod end will let that wheel turn left and right a little. That changes "toe" which is critical for good tire wear. If that tie rod wear gets bad enough it can separate leading to loss of control and a crash. That doesn't happen often because people have them replaced when a conscientious mechanic finds them. I'd be more concerned with explaining to a jury why you ignored a worn steering part than about tire wear. If in doubt, get another opinion from a different tire and alignment shop. Don't tell them about the worn parts. Allow them to find the problems by themselves.
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Monday, March 18th, 2013 AT 12:04 AM

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