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Off Center Steering Wheel

My 2006 accord’s Steeing wheel is off center. I was told by sevral people that, if I do a wheel alignmet, it will be fixed. I tried with 2 different service stations, one with the Honda dealer itself. But stiil no luck.

Can someone suggest any other solution?

Thanks a lot

J James

New York

yeah! a trained tech,its a simple TOE issue.


Did You Have A 2 Or 4 Wheel Alignment?

You probably had a front wheel alignment. The steering wheel should have been held in a centered position during the alignment. If this was done and both alignments were properly done, the problem could be caused by one or more faulty tires. Tires will sometimes cause a vehicle to pull and the driver must turn to compensate and go straight. Swapping tires from right to left to see if the steering wheel centers or goes off center in the other direction might tell if it’s tires. It’s also possible that the rear wheel alignment might be off. A 4 wheel alignment might be in order. Also, check the vehicle carefully for dragging brakes or wheels.

Is there a plague of incompetence going around??? Don’t the mechanics TEST DRIVE vehicles when work is done?

Repair shops will normally stand behind the quality of their work, and will re-do something that they screw-up. You should not have paid another shop to do the same job until after you had attempted to have the first shop do their job properly.

Go back, state that the steering wheel was not centered, and state that you want it to be centered. There should be no charge. And then, seek other mechanics in the future, rather than Moe, Larry, and Curly.

We have a Honda Accord also, a 97 and had the same problem. Neither the dealer nor two shops could get it right, I ended up doing it myself. The rear wheels have to be aligned to the center of the front wheels first, then toe set correctly, then the front wheels can be aligned correctly. If its not done in that order, it won’t be right.

If you have the alignment printout try posting the specs as given and let’s take a look at them.

The steering wheel being off-center is often the result of a worn, or more than likely bent, suspension component such as a lower control arm. A curb strike, bad pothole, rough railroad track, etc. could be responsible for this.

The toe in/out may not be the problem except indirectly; the camber or caster being off due to a worn/bent part will alter the toe.

I know what you mean. On my trucks, after an alignment where they left mine off center, I got down under it and lengthened one tie rod and shortened the other. If the wheel is off to the left, lengthen the left one. (Tie rods to the rear of the control arm) Yourself, with a car and rack and pinion steering, you’re kind of stuck with what you have unless you explain it to the tech. It takes some people years to get a satisfied customer. A straight wheel on the rack usually helps the guy get it straight.

OK4450, Should a Damaged / Worn Component Raise A Red Flag And Make The Alignment Impossible To Do?

Shouldn’t this cause a competent technician to stop what they are doing and notify the customer? If there is excessive wear or damage, are these guys that did the alignment, not up to the task?

Yes, you’re correct. If something is out of kilter due to wear or damage (caster/camber) that is affecting toe then it should be noticeable when the alignment is checked.

It’s the responsibility of the alignment tech to inform the car owner (directly or indirectly through a service writer) of a problem. It’s then a matter of repairing any damage or bringing it into alignment as closely as possible if the customer does not want a repair.
Recentering the steering wheel should be part of the alignment process. If they’re not doing the above then they’re not doing the job properly.

I mention the damage scenario because there is no reason for a steering wheel to be off-center. (assuming that the alignment was never touched previously and the OP just happened to notice one day that it was off)
In this case it could be that a hard curb strike, etc. could have tweaked something (usually a control arm) and this is the cause of the off-center st. wheel.

Thank you. I think I got ther answer now. A you mentioned, tie rods should fix it.