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Old 06-08-2016, 10:59 PM
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After Lift: Steering Wheel Centered... But NOT

Ok, I searched around quite a bit but didn't find my particular problem addressed. Here's the rundown:

-2015 JKUHR manual 6spd, 35x12.5x17 KO2's
-Installed AEV Dualsport 3.5 SC kit, minus geo correction brackets
-Steering wheel was off, set off ESC on way to alignment
-Immediately after alignment, steering wheel was centered, light went away
-Next day, steering wheel ~10deg to left, no ESC light
-Installed geo correction brackets, tightened up all bolts
-Steering wheel still ~10deg to the left, no ESC light
-Plugged in AEV procal and performed steering wheel centering

According to the procal (and lack of ESC light), the steering wheel thinks it is centered, but is ~10deg off to the left. Jeep drives mostly straight with wheel cocked to the left. Toe was OK from the alignment.

Any ideas on what could be causing this?


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Old 06-08-2016, 11:09 PM   #2
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Center the wheel visually and test. I drove turn mine drive turn mine (drag link) until it is straight down the freeway.

I bet the aev ain't right.

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Old 06-08-2016, 11:12 PM   #3
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I had a similar issue with mine, but when I did my lift install I also installed an adjustable track bar. I think I was fighting between the track bar and the drag link, adjusting one seemed to throw off the other and vice versa. Once I got the track bar straightened out then I went to centering the wheel. I had some 'help' with my install and turned out the track bar wasn't tightened down all the way and it was causing all kind of weird stuff with the steering. Maybe some of that applies to you, good luck.
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Old 06-08-2016, 11:21 PM
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Thanks, I did check all the bolts, and some were a bit loose, but that didn't seem to change much. I just assume that the alignment shop used an electronic aid to center the wheel, as does the AEV, since the ESC system relies on it being centered. I didn't disconnect the pitman arm at all either. No clue how the wheel can think it's centered when clearly not...
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Old 06-09-2016, 12:13 AM   #5
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So you did the steering wheel centering and got the high beam indicator when the wheel was clearly off 10 degrees left?
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Old 06-09-2016, 12:25 AM
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Yep. I assumed it would be off but as soon as I plugged in the aev the brights indicator came on. I confirmed right and left turn signals by cranking the drag link, then back to "center".

I might take it back in for another alignment. I raised hell with Firestone since they would not get me in and also refused to leave my tires at 30psi so I got a full refund...
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Old 06-09-2016, 02:30 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chingon_ed View Post
I might take it back in for another alignment. I raised hell with Firestone since they would not get me in and also refused to leave my tires at 30psi so I got a full refund...
I had a similar issue with Firestone. Took them 5 new 33's to mount and road-force balance. Had a bad vibration afterwards, so I took it to a small shop closer to where I live. He said that one rear didn't have any weights at all, and was off by 7 grams. The other rear had 2 different types of weights (they didn't even remove the weights before they balanced), and it was off by 12 grams. Called Firestone to bitch and get a partial refund, and they basically told me to get F'd! I tried to let them work on the balance problem, but they said they couldn't get me in for a few days, and that's why I took it to the other shop.

Needless to say, I was not impressed, and will NEVER go back to them again.
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Old 06-09-2016, 09:42 PM
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Originally Posted by Mr.P_0_0_P View Post
I bet the aev ain't right.
I thought about that but if that was true the ESC light should be coming on, right? To me, it looks like the Jeep system, Alignment shop AND AEV agree, the wheel just doesn't...
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Old 06-09-2016, 11:58 PM   #9
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I keep reading about using electronics to try to center a steering wheel? NOT.

It is simple, you park the Jeep where you are going to work on it, make sure the tires are straight forward. This may take several tries to make sure the wheels are straight. Then and only then you loosen the bolts on the adjusting sleeve on the drag link and turn the sleeve until the steering wheel is straight.

When I took my TJ in for an alignment after I bought it (with the steering wheel 30 degrees to the left) after the tech did the alignment it took him exactly two minutes to straighten the steering wheel. The tech commented that it is easy on Jeeps.

If there is an adjusting sleeve on the track bar, that may be to move the axle left or right. Any adjustment on the tie rod is to adjust the toe in.

The angle of the steering wheel is totally independent of the alignment data. That data is based on the physical alignment of the suspension and wheels to the road.

That being said, any good tech would center the steering wheel in the manner I said as the very last step before the test drive. I bet they didn't test drive it either did they?

The tire dealer I use will always take the vehicle on a test drive before turning it over to the customer. However, it is not done by the tech, but the service adviser. She is the quality control and as a result of their QC I have taken all my vehicles to them for over 25 years.
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Old 06-10-2016, 07:37 AM   #10
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Dont go down to the alignment again, just adjust the turnbuckle on the draglink and center it. It will take a couple tries to get it just right.
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Old 06-10-2016, 06:17 PM
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I understand how to physically center the steering wheel using the drag link.

My point is that JK ABS requires that the steering wheel THINK that it's centered as well. Ideally, that happens when it's physically centered as well. I didn't disconnect the pitman arm/steering shaft/etc so I'm not sure how that relationship got screwed up...
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Old 06-10-2016, 08:45 PM   #12
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I would wait until you have a few more miles on the new springs before re centering it again. I'm sure as they break in the front end may sag alittle more then when initially installed which will cause the wheel to move again.
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Old 06-12-2016, 11:47 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chingon_ed View Post
I understand how to physically center the steering wheel using the drag link.

My point is that JK ABS requires that the steering wheel THINK that it's centered as well. Ideally, that happens when it's physically centered as well. I didn't disconnect the pitman arm/steering shaft/etc so I'm not sure how that relationship got screwed up...
It happened when they adjusted the toe! They adjusted the tie rods to correct the toe, and they didn't know enough to re-center the wheel. Or, they re-centered it and just did a crappy job of it.
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Old 06-15-2016, 10:00 PM   #14
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I just used a Procal to center my wheel after a lift and 35s this past weekend. As soon as I plugged it in I got high beam indicator nothing more but my wheel was still way right. After fooling around with it a couple times I plugged it in then moved the wheel just a hair. When I did, the high beam light went away and the directional arrow came on. From there it worked like a charm. So I say try moving your wheel from the drivers seat a little right after you plug in the Procal.
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Old 06-15-2016, 10:11 PM   #15
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AEV says that the procal is only supposed to be used to center the steering wheel if on an alignment rack. They say not to try and use it on the ground.

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Old 06-19-2016, 02:09 PM   #16
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the final step to an alignment on any modern vehicle so equipped, is to reset the steering wheel angle , once all other physical angles are adjusted. You plug in to the ALDL port and it resets the computer so as the computer knows exactly where steering wheel is straight.

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