Advice Re Wheel Alignment Required - Kia Forum
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#1 (permalink) Old 05-17-2005, 04:31 PM
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I have had a Sorento XE for 14 months, with 20k miles on the clock, and recently noticed excessive wear on the inside of the offside front tyre.
Even though I was told that it was not a warranty item and would be chargeable, I booked the car in for checking and wheel alignment with the local Kia dealer, from whom I had bought the car, reasoning that though they might be more expensive, I would get better service than a tyre fitters.
I agreed to deliver the car for around 0900hrs.(I was told they would need the vehicle for 2-3 hrs).
I turned up on the morning it was booked in (admittedly 30 minutes late), and was surprised to be told that the Service Manager had said that uneven tyre wear was quite normal on a 4x4,the implication being that no action was required - this without even looking at the tyre.
When I insisted that this was rubbish and that there was definitely something amiss. the guy on reception went back to the Service Manager, and came back saying that they would work on the car, but it wouldn't be ready until around 1400 - 1500hrs! Whilst accepting that I was 30 mins late, I remonstrated about this.The receptionist said that Kia allowed 2-3 hours for 4 wheel alignment (which was not what I'd actually asked for), and then,what was probably more to the point, that they had never done a wheel alignment on a Sorento before so didn’t know how long it would take.
When I said that I may as well have booked it into a tyre centre, he started rabbitting on that a tyre centre wouldn't have the correct tools etc

That was enough for me - I left the dealership, took the car to a nearby tyre centre, who, after confirmimg that they had the set up on their computer, carried out wheel alignment on the front wheels within 20 minutes. However, they said that the camber on the offside front was slightly off, but they couldn't see how to adjust it!
Has anyone else had problems with getting wheel alignment done properly on a Sorento?
And does anyone know...
Is there any truth in the statement that 4x4 tyres wear unevenly?
Do Kia really allow 2-3 hours for wheel alignment?
How do I get the camber adjusted - can anyone recommend a tyre centre that can do it?

And, is this common on Sorentos? I did over 46k mile in my previous 4x4 with never any need to get wheel alignment done.
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#2 (permalink) Old 05-17-2005, 05:31 PM
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No, the tyres should NOT wear unevenly.

The camber can be adjusted on the chassis ends of the wishbones, I would recommend you get a full laser 4 wheel alignment done, it's the full and sure way of making sure your car is spot on.
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#3 (permalink) Old 05-19-2005, 10:55 PM
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I had an alignment problem with my Sorento as well. see my posting here
http://www.kia-forums.com/index.php?showto...66&hl=alignment

Anyways, i brought it back to the dealer and they took it in without any hassle.
It did take them about 1-1.5 hours to align it though..and they said its normal to take that long on the Sorentos. I was quiet pleased with the service...I tested it after and they did fix the pulling problem..big difference.

Tires should not wear out uneven on Sorentos or any 4X4. In fact any other car shouldn't do that. If you see the evidence on the tires, as you mentioned, it is considered a defect and should be fixed under warranty.

Good luck
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#4 (permalink) Old 05-21-2005, 03:39 AM
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Murphwiz / djkoloks,

Thanks for your replies.....
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#5 (permalink) Old 06-07-2005, 09:04 AM
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I am glad to hear that I am not alone in my troubles!

I have had a similar fobbing off story with my local kia dealer. Even down to the 'all 4x4's have this problem'. I can concur with the other responses in that I have never heard of or experienced this problem.

I also have had other excuses of that they have changed the tyres round and that the wear had occured on the front. Again I believe this is rubbish because it has now done 40k and 10k of those are in the current tyre configuration.

Therefore if the wear had occured on the front it would have continued to do so, but as yet there are no signs of this!

I therefore believe that the tyre wear has actually occured on the rear, namely the inside edge of the nearside tyre and the outside edge of the offside tyre.

The wheel alignment people I have taken it to believe that this is a warranty issue and won't take it on.

The fight continues! - has anybody got some advice on this?
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#6 (permalink) Old 06-07-2005, 09:34 AM
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i just did a 5 tire rotation on our 05 sorento with appx 4500 miles on it and examined the ft. tires very closely and saw no uneven wear.
for 11 years i was a ford mechanic at a dealer that had around 16 first class mechanics at a very competent dealership.
out of those mechanics maybe 5 would do an alignment so that the vehicle would wear tires properly and another 5 would align to FACTORY SPECTS (spects in fact that were so wide that they wear tires.
the rest of the mechanics would FAKE the ft end alignment. WHY! it only paid the mechanic 9/10 of an hour and in reality took 1 to 1 1/2 hr to do it correctly, ft only (not 4 wheel)
so when you take your vehicle to have it aligned will it be ? maybe.
i examined the ft end of our 4 wd sorento the alignment is a no-brainer 1-1 1/2 hr
and the way i read the documentation ft end alignment under warrenty for a year

p.s. our chevy astro had a ft end tire wear problum on the drivers side. i told the chevy dealer obout it and they said they aligned the ft end, THEY NEVER DID ! another liying service dept.

in two days the sorento has to go back for; very noisey rockers arms, horns cherping by them selves, bad chrome plating on the grill

given my past experiances with this dealership this will be an interesting visit!!

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#7 (permalink) Old 06-07-2005, 11:25 AM
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I agree that tire rotation is very important I do mine at 5000 miles front to rear only.
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#8 (permalink) Old 06-08-2005, 05:18 AM
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You have a crappy stealership. As stated before, 4x4 tires do not wear funny. If the Sorento is aligned properly the tires will wear normal. Take it back to the dealer and tell them that you want 0-degrees of camber all the way around. Also tell them that spec is plus or minus .5 degree, because it is and that comes from the service manual.

If you go in there and "sound" like you know what you are talking about, they will tend to take you more seriously. The dealerships job is to save Kia money. To do this, they will argue with you about everything that they can, that you beleive. Go in there and B.S. them right back. My favorite is "my friend..." In this case, "My friend works for Les Schwab tires and he said...." If you make them look stupid by B.S.ing you, they will stop.

Camber is easily adjusted using the cam-bolts on the bottom of the control arms.

I'm not sure what the labor time is that Kia gives, but I can check. If I remember right, it's an hour, but again I'd have to look for sure.
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#9 (permalink) Old 06-09-2005, 03:15 PM
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I checked out the labor time. Kia gives 1.1hr for a 4-wheel alignment and 1.0hr for a 2-wheel alignment.
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#10 (permalink) Old 06-09-2005, 03:22 PM
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Thanks for all the responses - difficult to tell, but since getting my front wheels realigned at tyre centre, wear seems to have evened out - will have to get more miles on before being sure. Armed with the info supplied though, should be able to get better service from dealership if I need to take it in again.
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