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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2013
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    United States
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    227

    Default Alignment issue? Nervous steering/tracking grooves.

    Last alignment as of a month or two ago is within spec.

    The car still feels a little nervous over grooves and stuff in the road. When I take off a little faster from a stop light, it sometimes feels like it pulls to the right. Most of the time not. I donít see the traction control light come on, so I donít think thatís giving me the odd feeling.

    Ordinarily Iíd suggest itís just torque steer, but this feels a little different. I *did* replace the axle a few months ago with a refurb GKA (they make the Volvo axles, the original axle is GKA too), but I canít imagine the axle twists enough to be felt like that. Especially since itís not EVERY time.

    There's no vibration or weirdness when I accelerate or get off the gas otherwise.

    Looking under the car and tugging on the wheels at 6-12 and 3-9 positions doesnít reveal any obvious slop (like joints/bushings). The steering feels very responsive without slack or bump-steer. I really canít put my finger on it, but it just doesnít feel right, and when the car feels right it feels like a new car Ė so I want it back to that.

    Another thing that seems a little different is that with a turned-to-lock to the left, the right tire seems to scrub the outside edge more than usual, sometimes it Ďpopsí at full lock on various surfaces (like the tire slips and hops on the pavement, as if it were turned a lot - which we all know these cars can't do. haha). Maybe if itís more slippery? It doesnít do this when I turn full-left. This is partially why I suspect the alignment Ė but why would the dealership alignment printout show it as in-spec if I have alignment issues?

    I have to call around to some alignment shops because Iím not entirely sure I trust the local Volvo dealership.

    Iím wondering if my tires might have something to do with this Ė theyíre my beloved Continental DWS, but they are getting on in age and I donít have other tires to put on to try. I could rotate them and see if I feel a difference.

    No clunks or weird notchiness in the steering, so I donít suspect failure of hard parts. My LCAs were replaced ~40K miles ago (LCAs, ball joints, inner/outer tie rod ends, struts, strut bearings, sway bar links). I had the subframe bushings replaced at Volvo late last year, and had them put in the IPD front sway bar too. I installed the rear sway bar shortly after).

    Any ideas of anything else to check or look at? Steering rack (it has no leaks or notchiness/vibration)?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    GA
    Posts
    1,332

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Reverend View Post
    When I take off a little faster from a stop light, it sometimes feels like it pulls to the right.

    My LCAs were replaced ~40K miles ago Any ideas
    Worn control arm bushings will cause the car to pull when accelerating and drift the other way when decelerating (when they get really bad).

    What brand of control arms did you use?

    I've had to warranty out control arms for worn out bushings that had less than 40k on them.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2013
    Location
    United States
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    227

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by hoonk View Post
    Worn control arm bushings will cause the car to pull when accelerating and drift the other way when decelerating (when they get really bad).

    What brand of control arms did you use?
    I used OEM Volvo LCAs with the bushings already in them. The weird part is that it's not all the time and it's never a drift leftward when I decelerate. It's ONLY a slight pull right when I accelerate and only sometimes.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    GA
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    1,332

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Reverend View Post
    OEM Volvo LCAs.
    If you purchased them from Volvo then you got the best quality. An OE or OEM part (that does not have "Volvo" stamped on the part) from an aftermarket source may not be the same. Even if is from the same manufacturer as the "Volvo" part.

    From experience I have been fooled by the "OEM" label (and the salesmen selling those parts), and it cost me in warranty repairs from premature failure, and created angry customers or soon to be ex-customers.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2013
    Location
    United States
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    Default

    My bad, I meant actual blue-box Volvo branded parts. I was afraid of compromising on the LCAs for this specific reason.

  6. #6

    Default

    The following the grooves issue could be tires or tramlining - zero toe in the front - the alignment should show slight toe in or out for both sides equally, not zero.

    In regards to the popping, I have the same damn problem right now but I've replaced everything BUT the axles.
    Full lock is pretty consistent with a pop or clunk - Axles are my next replacement.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Sep 2013
    Location
    United States
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    227

    Default

    Yeah, I have to look to the tires again.
    Alignment is 0.06 degrees on each side, with a total of 0.11 and a 0.00 steer ahead. The camber is -0.3 (left) and -0.6 (right) - yet the outside edges of the tires are slightly chewed. Possibly due to the age of the tires, but given that these cars have a turning radius of a battleship, I didn't expect them to eat the outside edges at all (not like a 700/900 series).

    The popping isn't the axles or hard parts, it's the tire slipping-and-gripping on the pavement. I notice it in a particular parking spot at work when it rains and I have to make the full-left turn. The right-side front tire will slip-and-grip and make a little popping sound as it does so.



    Quote Originally Posted by AutosDirectFlorida View Post
    The following the grooves issue could be tires or tramlining - zero toe in the front - the alignment should show slight toe in or out for both sides equally, not zero.

    In regards to the popping, I have the same damn problem right now but I've replaced everything BUT the axles.
    Full lock is pretty consistent with a pop or clunk - Axles are my next replacement.

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