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i had a wheel alignment done on new wheels and tires.

a few days later i had my belts tightened, the mechanic there said i needed a new tie rod. i believe because the alignment guys had said the right front tire was rubbing when the wheel turned, they suggested filing the body of the wheel wheel.


If you truely need a tie rod (end) then no, you cannot get a good alignment.

If the tires are rubing on the wheel wells I have to ask…are these the original wheels and tires? Usually this is caused by either wider tires or wheels with a different offset that the originals (done to widen the stance).

yes , I came up 3 sizes on tires . The offset was still matched to my vehicle. When the wheel is completely turned, it rubs just a bit on the one wheel where I was told I needed the tie rod. SO, the mechanics that did the alignment…who is the responsible party…should they have seen it and said something…and not do the alignment until i replace the tie rod.Should I go back and make them aware of this . How does this work? I go into a place and ask for an alignment and they just do it good or bad and I pay for nothing.

I need to be sure I understand this correctly. Did the guy who did the belts say you needed a tie rod BECAUSE the tire was rubbing? Is so, your alignment and tie rods may be fine and the cause may be the three-sizes-too-big tires.

If he told you that because the tie rod end is worn out, did he show you?

Have you done anything else to the car, such as cut springs?

Lastly, how was the wear on the old tires? Did they wear smoothly and evenly?

You will not get a true reading if a tie rod is worn; or a tie rod end, ball joint, or a control arm bushing for that matter.
Some places inspect suspension components as part of the alignment; some don’t. My opinion is that it should be the former.

So why in the world are you going up 3 sizes on the tires? Mud bogger or what?
Forget this “filing the body” business.

Sounds like a loose tie rod is the least of the worries. Maybe the wheel rubbing is not caused by the tie rod but by a worn ball joint; which can be a dangerous thing on a vehicle.

It is likely the recent alignment came with a warranty. Go back to the first shop, and ask them to check your tie rods. If a tie rod needs to be replaced, ask them fix the tie rod (for a fee) and realign the car (for free).

Ironic it was…just as I was wondering if some of the older, more experienced fellers were still around (like tester, and OK…I see “forget about this filing the body” and low and behold, I see OK4450, good to see! …and all the while the Boswell sisters are singin along.

that sounds like a good tactful idea…thanks


You got a lot of good advice here. I would not trust the mechanic who said you need a tie rod because the tire is rubbing. You may need a new tie rod and he may have noticed that based on something else, but either he didn’t communicate that with you or you misunderstood him.

Saying that you need a tie rod because the tire is rubbing would be like a doctor saying that you have Cancer because you have a cut on your finger.

BTW, a worn tie rod would actually make the tire rubbing LESS likely, not more. Going three sizes over with the same offset is the problem. You need additional offset if you go more than two sizes and on some cars, even one oversize will require additional offset.