Nissan Altima 2005 - Alignment - What could be the problem

Hi All, The car was pulling to the left, i took it for alignment, the mechanics came back suggesting that the front left inner tie rod and front right lower control arm need to be changed (exact same parts had been changed a year before as well) I took the car for independent analysis and they came up with the same conclusion, I did the change after which i took the car for an alignment (see attached, Jan 2015) the problem did not resolve but i was too busy to take the car back, this june i took the car back again for alignment and the team gave me the paper attached suggesting that the shocks need to be changed.

i’d like to know what is your opinion

... this june i took the car back again for alignment...

You mean the paper dated 5-9-2015? Anyway, switch the two front wheels and report back.

I Would Try Insightful’s Recommendation.
See If The Pull Changes To The Right Or Goes Away.

February, 2009, Nissan Published A 19 Page TSB (Technical Service Bulletin NTB08-097a) To Help Their Technicians Diagnose, Sort Out, And Remedy Complaints Of “Vehicle Pulls To One Side”. It Covers All Nissan Models Except GT-R.

I don’t know if it will help, but you can have a look at it for ideas. This document has a Copyright, but you can usually search and download one on the web.


Before changing anything I’d check to see if you have a brake shoe dragging (caliper sticking). This is not uncommon in a 10 year old car and I’ve seen people spend tons of cash chasing alignments when a dragging pad was the problem all along.

Checking for a dragging pad is easy. For $25+/- pick up an infrared thermometer with a laser sight (harbor Freight Tools has one on sale currently). Take the car for a ride, stop in a parking lot or at home, and measure the temperature of the discs on both sides. The fronts will always be higher that the rears, but if there’s a significant temperature difference side to side, you likely have a pad dragging. Confirmation can be a visual inspection of the pads. One of the two pads in the caliper will be a lot more worn down than the others.

You might be able to feel the difference by touching the wheels, but do so carefully. A dragging pad can heat up a wheel pretty significantly. Don’t burn yourself.

Of course it pulls to the left, you have too much caster on the right front. 1/2 degree too much and the May alignment made this WORSE! It really isn’t adjustable so I fail to see how they could have made this worse.

They replaced the lower right front control arm because they think it is bent. Since it has been replaced and the problem persists, it is not bent. Likely the car is a bit bent or the front sub-frame has been knocked askew. The SAI (steering axis inclination) tells you that as well since it is 0.73 to 0.9 degrees higher right side than left.

The control arms are mounted to the subframe and the subframe is bolted to the cars unit-structure. The solution is to loosen the entire front subframe and move it back into position assuming there is enough slop in the bolt holes to allow this. The left side has been knocked back and must be pulled forward a bit and/or the right side moved back so that both SAI’s are the close to the same and so the caster angles are close to the same.

Your shocks have NOthing so do with this problem., The alignment shop is grabbing at straws because they really aren’t very good. You need a better shop or you need to take it to a body and frame shop to get the subframe put in the right place and then have the alignment checked.