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Car Pulling To One Side. Alignment Is Straight

AWDWAGON

Passed Driver's Ed
Location
Barrie
Went to the dealer and they want $700 to do an alignment
I had an alignment done at a dealer in the GTA, a couple of weeks ago, and they charged me $120 + taxes for 4 wheels alignment. You may want to change dealership in the future. Would you care to name the dealership?
 

theDoktor

Go Kart Newbie
Location
Buffalo, NY area
Car(s)
2017 GTI Sport
I had an alignment done at a dealer in the GTA, a couple of weeks ago, and they charged me $120 + taxes for 4 wheels alignment. You may want to change dealership in the future. Would you care to name the dealership?
This is in the range of what is reasonable for a proper 4-wheel alignment. I had a local Euro-preformance shop do it for $100 plus taxes.
I won't be able to cross the border anytime soon, so I personally don't need the dealer's name!
 

q74

Passed Driver's Ed
Car(s)
R
The guy that did my alignment is known for doing good mechanic work and he is #1 in time attack in the province. A lot of us enthusiasts in Toronto go to him for alignments. Also I'm more inclined to believe him than the dealer, who wanted $700 to do an alignment on top of a $50 inspection fee today.
Could be lazy or for some reason doesn't want to deal with you? Someone can be "the best" at their trade and still do lazy work. Definitely take a look at the sensor, but the toe in alignment check you posted are... well quite sloppy actually. They are "in-spec" technically, but I wouldn't accept them being that far off from each other.

If its not the sensor then honestly feels like its a mix of steering wheel not being properly locked when alignment was done, together with sloppiness of it.
 
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geokilla

Ready to race!
Location
Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Car(s)
2018 VW GTI DSG
Thanks guys. Called him today and he said he'll put my car on the lift next Friday to check suspension, steering, and alignment again. He has a good rep so that's why I still trust him. But it's possible his assistant did a sloppy job as you guys said. Will definitely bring up the steering angle sensor but I don't think he'll be able to reset it since he doesn't have VCDS or OBDeleven I don't think. But lots of us do so it's just a matter of finding the right process and code to do it.

I'll bring all the alignment print outs and tell him how the toe is off, as well as it shouldn't be off from each side by that much. Hopefully it really is just alignment and nothing else.
 

geokilla

Ready to race!
Location
Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Car(s)
2018 VW GTI DSG
Did another alignment last Friday at another shop as he was able to do a quick inspection for me, and my car is still pulling to the right with the wheel on centre.The toe was centered and touch up was made to the camber.

Why do different machines have such vastly different readings?
 

theDoktor

Go Kart Newbie
Location
Buffalo, NY area
Car(s)
2017 GTI Sport
Either the alignment is off or there is a worn part (wheel bearing or ball joint most likely candidates) that is causing the pulling. Go to Home Depot or Lowe's and buy a roll of mason's line. I like either the fluorescent orange or yellow for visibility. Tie a loop of it around all four wheels as high and as close to the wheel centerline as you can without the line touching any bodywork or under-body stuff. At the front of the front wheels and the back of the rear wheels, don't worry about the string line touching anything- the sides of the car are much more important. Make sure the knot is not touching the tires or bodywork. The steering wheel should be in the straight-ahead position. You should have a small, equal gap between the tire sidewall and the string on both sides of the car; on the front, the gap should be at the back of the tire; at the back, it should be at the front of the tire or the line just barely touching the tire. If the gap is not equal on both sides at the front, use the steering wheel to make it so. Now, if the gap is equal on both sides and the steering wheel is not centered, you know why the car pulls to one side- it's alignment. If it's equal and the wheel is centered, try to rotate the front wheels by hand by pulling/yanking the TIRE from side-to-side. If you feel any clunking or excessive movement, it's a mechanical issue.
 

xXDavidCXx

Go Kart Champion
Car(s)
2017 GTI SE DSG
Either the alignment is off or there is a worn part (wheel bearing or ball joint most likely candidates) that is causing the pulling. Go to Home Depot or Lowe's and buy a roll of mason's line. I like either the fluorescent orange or yellow for visibility. Tie a loop of it around all four wheels as high and as close to the wheel centerline as you can without the line touching any bodywork or under-body stuff. At the front of the front wheels and the back of the rear wheels, don't worry about the string line touching anything- the sides of the car are much more important. Make sure the knot is not touching the tires or bodywork. The steering wheel should be in the straight-ahead position. You should have a small, equal gap between the tire sidewall and the string on both sides of the car; on the front, the gap should be at the back of the tire; at the back, it should be at the front of the tire or the line just barely touching the tire. If the gap is not equal on both sides at the front, use the steering wheel to make it so. Now, if the gap is equal on both sides and the steering wheel is not centered, you know why the car pulls to one side- it's alignment. If it's equal and the wheel is centered, try to rotate the front wheels by hand by pulling/yanking the TIRE from side-to-side. If you feel any clunking or excessive movement, it's a mechanical issue.
That's pretty complicated when we can just look at his alignment sheet.

I'm with theDoctor though, your car must have a worn bushing.
 

theDoktor

Go Kart Newbie
Location
Buffalo, NY area
Car(s)
2017 GTI Sport
That's pretty complicated when we can just look at his alignment sheet.

I'm with theDoctor though, your car must have a worn bushing.
It's more complicated to explain than to actually do it! If it takes more than 5 minutes the first time you do it, you are doing something seriously wrong.

I like to start at a tire with the valve stem at around the 4 o'clock or 8 o'clock position. Tie one end of the string to that valve. Walk the string around the car, keeping it as high on the tires as you can. When you get back to your starting point, tighten the line as much as you can, untie the cord from the valve stem and tie the string end to the rest of the line. Walk around the car & adjust the string so it isn't sunk into any of the tread sipes on the outside edge of the tire & try to keep the line at about the same level at all tires.. You are now ready to quickly check your toe front & rear.
 
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geokilla

Ready to race!
Location
Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Car(s)
2018 VW GTI DSG
Here's the latest alignment sheet from July 31. I'll know more on Friday when the car is actually up at the lift at the shop that did my original alignment. To me, someone messed things up because my track was tracking straight prior to the alignment, rear sway bar install and front pads and rotors replacement. RS3 brake ducts shouldn't have an effect either and the shop that did all these parts install for me has done countless installs of them. It'd be very weird for wheel bearings to break like that I think.
 

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GTIfan99

Autocross Champion
Location
FL
I wouldn't accept that alignment from my shop. They know I track and get everything within .01 side to side.

You seem to be defending the person that did the alignment, you shouldn't be. You should be getting them to correct it.
 

geokilla

Ready to race!
Location
Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Car(s)
2018 VW GTI DSG
I wouldn't accept that alignment from my shop. They know I track and get everything within .01 side to side.

You seem to be defending the person that did the alignment, you shouldn't be. You should be getting them to correct it.
The July 31 alignment is from a different dealer, hence my comment why different machines are providing erratically different readings.

To summarize, this alignment sheet is from the shop where I got my first alignment that started this adventure. The July 31 alignment is from a VW dealer that checked my alignment and did an adjustment free of charge as a courtesy. The first VW dealer I went to on July 29 wanted $700 for an alignment. I declined. All they got was $50 for an "alignment check" and a bad review. I have yet to put my car back at the lift by the initial two shops that did the initial alignment and parts install respectively as they are fully booked. I will have another update this Friday afternoon hopefully. But for now, I'm pretty bummed out as to what the hell is happening.
 

GTIfan99

Autocross Champion
Location
FL
The July 31 alignment is from a different dealer, hence my comment why different machines are providing erratically different readings.

To summarize, this alignment sheet is from the shop where I got my first alignment that started this adventure. The July 31 alignment is from a VW dealer that checked my alignment and did an adjustment free of charge as a courtesy. The first VW dealer I went to on July 29 wanted $700 for an alignment. I declined. All they got was $50 for an "alignment check" and a bad review. I have yet to put my car back at the lift by the initial two shops that did the initial alignment and parts install respectively as they are fully booked. I will have another update this Friday afternoon hopefully. But for now, I'm pretty bummed out as to what the hell is happening.
Did you disconnect the RSB yet to rule that out? Take minutes.
 

geokilla

Ready to race!
Location
Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Car(s)
2018 VW GTI DSG
Did you disconnect the RSB yet to rule that out? Take minutes.
I don't know how, nor have the tools, so no. But everyone I've spoke to said the rear sway bar should have no effect on it. I also know the brakes are not dragging because I can get the usual 36MPG to 37MPG on highway cruising like I normally do.
 
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