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Bent strut?

I took my Ford Escape 2016 to a tire store to get new tires, since my front driver’s side tire had worn completely down on the interior side of the tire. Wires were sticking out and it went flat just before I took it in. The mechanics told me that it was caused by a bent strut and the tie rods were damaged because of this.I wanted an alignment due to the uneven wear, but they said they could not do one due to this bent strut. Well, my SUV has only 42000 miles on it, and it has NOT been in an accident or hit a curb hard enough. No one else has used my car. I bought this SUV at a dealership almost a year ago and it had only one owner. Carfax report is clean. What are some possible ways this could have happened? I have a Premium Care warranty, but they said it would only cover if it was due to a defect. This is going to cost about 850.00 dollars to be fixed. The tie rods are also damaged to this is strut issue. I wouldn’t have had to bought a whole new set of tires if this problem didn’t exist. I need to take it into a FORD dealership to have it inspected to see if the warranty will cover, but I don’t want to have to pay if they won’t cover it anyway. Any advice is greatly appreciated.

The only advice is get a second opinion which might have a charge. We can’t see the vehicle and it will need to be on a rack for the mechanic to diagnose.

I am just afraid they will do or say anything to get out of the warranty claim.

If it is bent and I think that it is I can’t see that being a warranty covered item. Also both front struts will need to be replaced because one new and an old one is not good.

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You have no idea what might have happened in the previous miles before your purchase bought used I assume, Your loss.

You’re going to loose this one.

  1. this means only that the salesman said it had only one previous owner. Probably a little old lady that drove it only to church on Sunday. It does NOT mean that it wasn’t in an accident. Or hit an offramp curb at highway speeds. Or been used to liberate a county from a brutal dictatorship. Never believe a word a used cars salesman says. Never ever.

  2. carfax… one of my favorite subjects… is a farce. They present themselves as having access to some mystical database that records everything a vehicle has gone through. Without ever actually making that claim, 'cause that would be fraud. No such database exists. Their data consists of only what they’ve been voluntarily told. Nothing more.

Sorry, but you have two choices. Have it evaluated and properly repaired (assuming no serious damage is discovered in the evaluation) or live with it… and learn to monitor the wear on your tires more carefully in the future. I recommend the first option.

Whatever you decide, consider this an expensive lesson in used car purchasing. Never believe a car salesman or a clean Carfax report.



Agree with mountainbike about carfax I know a guy who was selling his car & got all his oil change & repair record’s together.he pulled the carfax report to add to the selling point.The carfax report reported the car was stolen& wrecked.He owned the car since new.

So how many miles were on it when you bought it?

If the strut and tie rods are bent I would strongly suspect there are some other parts bent also; notably the lower control arm. This would have to be caused by a collision or the mother of all potholes or curb strikes.
I also have to wonder if the strut tower or subframe is tweaked.

Warranty will not pay for damage like this. It is not a factory defect. Maybe you need to have a good body shop look this vehicle over to see if it’s been whacked hard before.

Sometimes dealer demonstrators take a pounding before sale to a customer. At one dealer where I worked car salesmen tore up 2 cars badly and another car so badly that it became a parts donor after an alcohol fueled weekend which led to bogging it in the mud and a 100 mile tow back to the dealership. Two wheels, manual transmission, windshield, dashboard and half the instruments, right front fender, hood, and a few dozen other items all wasted.


You bought it used, you can’t possibly know that. That is only true for the time you have had the vehicle. And I highly doubt you would know what is “hard enough” some suspension parts bend fairly easy if the force comes from an angle or direction the part wasn’t designed to experience.


I agree with the others that Car Fax is a sham. If the previous owner had a run in with a curb …or a minor accident, and no accident report was made, Car fax would never know.

Sometimes those parts can be bent pretty evenly. I recently replaced my outer tie rod ends because they were a little sloppy. I found that I had a slightly bent tie rod and I don’t ever remember hitting a curb or such.
I’m just lucky enough that I noticed before I ruined a tire.


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I think I know why it was already back on the lot as a used car after only one year.
Situations like this confirm my biggest fear in late-model used cars. I always wonder why they’re back on the lot so soon.

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Please don’t ever drive on tires like this again. You needlessly endangered yourself and, more importantly, others on the road.


I’m afraid the folks here are correct. It likely was in some time of altercation that was patched up by the dealer but not completely repaired or else it fell off the truck or something during transport and no one said anything about it. That $100,000 57 Chevy I talked about had a brand new Caddy (LS3 or something) engine and 6 speed transmission out of Caddy that had rolled off the transport truck and was totaled. So it does happen. Regardless, this will likely not be a warranty repair unless it can be shown that somehow it came that way from the factory. Really the dealer I don’t think would have little reason to not submit it as a warranty item if that’s what they find, just not likely. But a car wearing the tire that severely is way out of alignment and needs to be corrected pronto. I can’t understand how there wouldn’t be handling problems with a tire that far out of alignment.

That’s my view anyway. One way or another it has to be fixed.

The worn tire is proof that your front end is damaged. Get it fixed. Why do you think a warranty would apply?

I can’t tell from here if the strut is bent or not, but such a thing could happen just by going over a pothole at speed, especially if it happened during a turn. I can assure you that you wouldn’t be the first person to have a bent strut. It’s not a common thing we hear here, but it does happen. If you are unsure of the truthfulness of what the shop is telling you, ask for a second opinion from another shop of your choosing.

If the strut is indeed bent, then the tie rods are probably damaged too, like they say. This is all the kind of stuff mechanics see every day. Suspension parts are normally wearing items, and designed to be replaceable for this reason. Most of the expert mechanics here (of which I’m not one) recommend that if the strut on one side of the axle is replace, the strut on the other side should be too.

Clean CarFax means nothing nor does the “driven by a little old lady” My mom was the typical little old lady and she trashed her car hitting curbs and parked cars. And HER car had a bent strut!

As all the posters hear seem to agree… suck it up and pay for the repair. This isn’t warranty, it is damage.

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That is a perfect example of why drivers need to “get up close and personal” with their tires on a regular basis.
I have to assume that you are one of those folks who rarely–if ever–bother to check their tire pressure with a hand-held tire pressure gauge. In addition to verifying that your tires are properly inflated, you would have been able to observe that things were… just not right… with that tire before it even got to the point of the steel belts protruding.

But, to return to the main focus of the thread, I have to agree that this vehicle did suffer some type of damage (either “just” to the front suspension as a result of a YUGE pothole, or–more likely–collision damage), and relying on Carfax to make you aware of that problem was clearly not effective.

In the future, please try to remember that any used vehicle that you are close to buying needs to be examined by your own mechanic, prior to purchase. That inspection will probably cost you ~$100, but it could potentially save you from thousands of dollars of repairs, and prevent the stress of owning a badly-flawed vehicle.

Edited to add:
This issue is not something that would be–or should be–covered by a warranty.