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What causes tire wear like this?

Toyota Camry 2014.

Hey guys, I need some insight and help with this.

Quick history: I was in an accident june of this year where a lady slammed into my driver side door and left front tire at about 10-15 MPH, jolting my car to the right. It was fixed at a body shop and shortly after I bought new tires as the old ones were at the end of their life.

Now, my R tire has become COMPLETELY bald after about 6,000 miles (i dont know how i didnt notice) and the left tire has some wear. The wear is in a pattern that appears to be due to camber.

I brought the car to my mechanic for the tire being bald and and he believes i need to replace both front struts and the left wheel bearing and left hub bearing (the side I was hit on). He said he tried to align it, but it wouldnt align due to the bent strut.

Here is a photo of the tires:

Front Passenger Tire: Completely bald on the outer 3/4 or so.

Tires next to eachother after removal:
Left tire is the front driver side (balder on the inner aspect)
Right tire is the passenger side, it is more worn on the outer aspect (its flipped around)

Could this be due to being hit? Could it be normal wear and tear on the struts? Insurance won’t pay for anything but the bearings because they think the strut is unrelated. No damage or accidents since the last accident.

Please help, any advice or thoughts? Could this be just the bearings (this is what the insurance company is claiming). My mechanic thinks its the struts (he tried to align it and he couldnt?)

Thanks so much guys.

Misalignment could do this, these tires are worn out, at that point minor differences in wear are exaggerated. I’d go to an alignment expert and have front and rear checked. This likely resulted from the accident.

@CapriRacer Does anyone else think that those tires wear over inflated ?
Also Matt , I suspect you were not checking your tire pressure on a regular schedule or you might have noticed the wearing sooner.

I understand it went unnoticed, but what can cause this? Bent struts? Bad bearing?

Misalignment or damaged/bent suspension components, or bent body. You need this inspected.

Thanks for the reply. I took it to my mechanic and he says the struts are bent and it needs new left sided bearings. Is it possible that the impact of an accident on the left side would damage the right side?

Yes, definitely seems possible. The body of the car was moved quickly to the left presumably on impact from the right, but the tires were stuck to the road. Strut or other suspension system damage from the resulting force due to the change in inertia on any or all of the four wheels could potentially result from that. Likewise wheel bearings, although that seems less likely than suspension damage.

Is the tire on the right in the pic from the left side? Worn bearings or bad strut could certainly cause a problem but I’m in agreement with Volvo_V70 that overinflation may have played a part in this; especially with the tire on the left in the pic.

I can easily see the strut on the side that was hit being bent and the body shop should have replaced it or sent it to another shop for replacement. The accident would have knocked the tires out of alignment and that can affect both sides.

You could also have a bent frame and that would affect both sides and that is something else the body shop should have either corrected or reported. The insurance company probably would have totaled the car if they knew it had a bent frame.

The tire on the right in the picture is from the right front side. In the picture the inner aspect is more worn, but that was actually on the outside. It’s just flipped in the picture

All body shops should have performed this, am I correct? If they did not, how can I take this situation further? Appreciate all the help guys. Been dealing with this for so long

The impact on the left side could have bent the left strut, if so the camber would change but more significantly the toe would change by a great amount and that is what caused the tires to wear so quickly.

I suspect the toe is off by 2 degrees or more, the alignment inspection print out will show the amount of each measurement that is out of specification.

If the wheel bearing is very loose that could cause an alignment wear problem but it is unusual for a bear to become that loose and be ignored by the driver.

An over inflated tire will wear less than a tire inflated to specifications, over inflated tires won’t wear rapidly like those on your car.

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Yes and all body shops are in a hurry to turn out work. Was your steering wheel off-center after the collision?

Now that you mention it, my steering wheel is off center. Just slightly

Turned more to the left side

Even with a bent strut, would I be able to get diagnostics on the car from the alignment machine? I’ll call mechanic in the AM and ask for a print out if so.

That was an indication that something in the steering/suspension changed. If you had that diagnosed and pressed the insurance company at that time they should have paid for the repaid, a year later this is going to be more difficult.

When your technician checked the alignment he had the opportunity to print the “before alignment” measurements for future reference.

Thanks for clarifying the picture. Almost any time a wheel is hit (another car, curb, whatever) something will get bent to one degree or the other.

I would tend to think the lower control arm has a much greater chance of being damaged rather than the strut although a damaged strut is certainly possible.

And considering the age of the car replacing both struts (assuming one is damaged) is always recommended. The only time it would not be would be in the case of near new car having a strut replaced under warranty. In a case like that the car manufacturer will only foot the bill for one strut so it would be incumbent upon the car owner to foot the bill for the second if so desired.

The body shop I had the car fixed at never stated any issues with alignment etc. the car had been driving fine until I noticed the tire wear was ridiculous.

I’m about 6 months out from the accident, should I get multiple mechanics opinions and submit this to my insurance agency? They sent out an adjuster in person to the current shop it’s sitting at and denied to fix anything but the left sided bearings.

Going to contact the body shop tomorrow for more info

They did not drive your car before the collision and may not have an alignment rack on site. Many 15 year old cars have steering issues, a body man is not going to give great attention to the steering if there is not an obvious problem.

Rather than paying for these inspections that may not be in agreement with each other it may cost less to pay for new struts and control arms. These part are very old and you will benefit from the new parts.