1999 Dodge Caravan Front or 4 wheel alignment

  • 6 CYL
  • FWD
  • 125,000 MILES
I had my car checked to see if I needed a front or 4 wheel alignment. I was told Front wheel because there is a back axle in the back wheels. I was then told by another repair shop that all Dodge Caravans are required to have 4 wheel alignments. I was just wanting to know if that repair shop is just trying to get extra money or does it really need a 4 wheel alignment or just the simple 2 wheel front alignment. Thank you.
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Wednesday, October 20th, 2010 AT 1:15 PM

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Wheel Alignment

1. Position the vehicle on an alignment rack.
3. Install all required alignment equipment on the vehicle per the alignment equipment manufacturer's instructions. On this vehicle, a four-wheel alignment is recommended.

NOTE: Prior to reading the vehicle's alignment readouts, the front and rear of vehicle should be jounced. Induce jounce (rear first, then front) by grasping the center of the bumper and jouncing each end of vehicle an equal number of times. The bumper should always be released when vehicle is at the bottom of the jounce cycle.

4. Read the vehicle's current front and rear alignment settings. Compare the vehicle's current alignment settings to the vehicle specifications for camber, caster and toe-in.
5. If front camber and caster are not within specifications, proceed to CAMBER AND CASTER below. If caster and camber are within specifications, proceed to TOE which can be found following CAMBER AND CASTER. Rear camber, caster and toe are not adjustable. If found not to be within specifications, reinspect for damaged suspension or body components and replace as necessary.

Camber and caster settings on this vehicle are determined at the time the vehicle is designed, by the location of the vehicle's suspension components. This is referred to as NET BUILD. The result is no required adjustment of camber and caster after the vehicle is built or when servicing the suspension components. Thus, when performing a wheel alignment, caster and camber are not normally considered adjustable angles. Camber and caster should be checked to ensure they meet vehicle specifications. If front camber is found not to meet alignment specifications, it can be adjusted using an available camber adjustment bolt package. Before installing a camber adjustment bolt package on a vehicle found to be outside the specifications, inspect the suspension components for any signs of damage or bending.

CAUTION: Do not attempt to adjust the vehicles wheel; alignment by heating, bending or by performing any other modification to the vehicle's front suspension components or body.

If camber readings are not within specifications, use the following procedure to install the front camber adjustment bolt package and then adjust front camber.

The camber adjustment bolt package contains 2 flange bolts, 2 cam bolts, 2 dog bone washers, and 4 nuts. This package services both sides of the vehicle. Use the package to attach the strut clevis bracket to the steering knuckle after the strut clevis bracket has been modified. To install and adjust the camber adjustment bolt package, follow the procedure below.

1. Raise the vehicle until its tires are not supporting the weight of the vehicle.
2. Remove the front tire and wheel assemblies.

CAUTION: When removing the steering knuckle from the strut clevis bracket, do not put a strain on the brake flex hose. Also, do not let the weight of the steering knuckle assembly be supported by the brake flex hose when removed from the strut assembly. If necessary use a wire hanger to support the steering knuckle assembly or if required remove the brake flex hose from the caliper assembly.

CAUTION: The knuckle to strut assembly attaching bolt shanks are serrated and must not be turned during removal. Remove the nuts while holding the bolts stationary.

Clevis Bracket To Steering Knuckle Attaching Bolts

3. Remove the top and bottom, strut clevis bracket to steering knuckle attaching bolts and discard. Separate the steering knuckle from the strut clevis bracket and position steering knuckle so it is out of the way of the strut.

Strut Clevis Bracket Bolt Hole Grinding Area

CAUTION: When slotting the bottom mounting hole on the strut clevis bracket, do not enlarge the hole beyond the indentations on the sides of the strut clevis bracket.

4. Using an appropriate grinder and grinding wheel, slot the bottom hole in both sides of the strut clevis bracket.

CAUTION: After slotting the strut clevis bracket hole, do not install the original attaching bolts when assembling the steering knuckle to the strut assembly. Only the flange bolts, cam bolts, and dog bone washers from the service package must be used to attach the steering knuckle to the strut after the mounting hole is slotted.

Package Bolts Correctly Installed (left Shown)

5. Position the knuckle back into the strut clevis bracket. Install a flanged bolt from the service package into the upper mounting hole. Install a cam bolt into the bottom mounting hole. Both bolts should point forward once installed.

Dog Bone Washer And Nuts Installed On Attaching Bolts

6. Install a dog bone washer on the steering knuckle to strut clevis bracket attaching bolts, then install the nuts onto the bolts from the service package. Tighten the bolts just enough to hold the steering knuckle in position when adjusting camber, while still allowing the steering knuckle to move in clevis bracket.
7. Repeat the procedure to the other side strut clevis bracket.
8. Reinstall both front tire and wheel assemblies and tighten to specifications.
9. Lower the vehicle. Jounce the front and rear of vehicle an equal amount of times.

Camber Adjustment Cam Bolt

10. Adjust the front camber to the preferred setting by rotating the lower eccentric cam bolt against the cam stop areas on the strut clevis bracket. When camber is set, tighten the upper strut clevis bracket bolt and lower cam bolt. Again jounce front and rear of vehicle an equal amount of times and verify front camber setting. Torque both front strut to steering knuckle attaching bolts to 90 Nm (65 ft. Lbs.) Plus an additional 1/4 turn after the required torque is met.
11. If toe readings obtained are not within the required specification range, adjust toe to meet the preferred specification setting. Toe is adjustable using the following procedure.


1. Center the steering wheel and lock in place using a steering wheel clamp.

CAUTION: Do not twist front inner tie rod to steering gear rubber boots during front wheel Toe adjustment.

Front Wheel Toe Adjustment

2. Loosen front inner to outer tie rod end jam nuts. Grasp inner tie rods at serrations and rotate inner tie rods of steering gear to set front toe to the preferred toe specification.
3. Tighten tie rod jam nuts to 75 Nm (55 ft. Lbs.) Torque.
4. Adjust steering gear to tie rod boots at the inner tie rod.
5. Remove steering wheel clamp.
6. Remove the alignment equipment.
7. Road test the vehicle to verify the steering wheel is straight and the vehicle does not wander or pull.
There is the alignment procedure it say's a four wheel alignment is recommended.
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Wednesday, October 20th, 2010 AT 1:46 PM

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