Author Topic: Rear End Alignment  (Read 296 times)

Squiggle Dog

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Rear End Alignment
« on: 15 April 2019, 11:43 AM »
Whenever I've gone to get my W116s aligned, whether it's at an alignment shop or at the dealership, it's been recommended to have both the front and rear end aligned. Wanting the job done correctly, I've paid double each time so I could have the rear end aligned as well. But, now that I have the rear end out of my car and apart, I don't see any way the rear end's alignment can be changed.

Am I missing something, or have I been duped every single time and charged double for no reason?
Stop paying for animal cruelty and slaughter. Go vegan! https://tryveg.com/

1967 W110 Universal Wagon, Euro, Turbo Diesel, Tail Fins, 4 Speed Manual Column Shift, A/C
1980 W116 300SD Turbo Diesel, DB479 Walnut Brown, Sunroof, Heated Seats, 346,000+ Miles

daantjie

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Re: Rear End Alignment
« Reply #1 on: 15 April 2019, 12:22 PM »
Whenever I've gone to get my W116s aligned, whether it's at an alignment shop or at the dealership, it's been recommended to have both the front and rear end aligned. Wanting the job done correctly, I've paid double each time so I could have the rear end aligned as well. But, now that I have the rear end out of my car and apart, I don't see any way the rear end's alignment can be changed.

Am I missing something, or have I been duped every single time and charged double for no reason?

Yes unfortunately you have been duped. The rear is not aligned by itself. The front is aligned relative to the fixed rear wheels.
Daniel
1977 450 SEL 6.9 - Astralsilber

floyd111

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Re: Rear End Alignment
« Reply #2 on: 15 April 2019, 04:04 PM »
What happens a lot is that dealers explain it wrong, often on purpose. Computer-based front-end alignment needs to be done with 4 sensors on 4 wheels. This is the case, whether your rear can- or can not be adjusted. So, with non-adjustable rear wheels dealers claim it's about "handling" 4 wheels and 4 sensors, so you heed to pay for 4 wheels.
If your rear is adjustable, better, but most dealers will THEN give you a different price, for now 4 wheels need "handling" and adjusting(!) They often make it up as they go along, and there's no 2 wheel fee ever, unless maybe when they align the front manually.
Not saying that s always the case, but I had it happen frequently.

daantjie

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Re: Rear End Alignment
« Reply #3 on: 15 April 2019, 05:42 PM »
Yup, what Stan said, much better than my one liner ;D
Daniel
1977 450 SEL 6.9 - Astralsilber

OLDGOLD

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Re: Rear End Alignment
« Reply #4 on: 16 April 2019, 08:30 PM »
What's interesting is that now on many of the new MB sedans, only the toe can be adjusted, technicians call it a toe-and-go. Another technician told that if it has to be corrected for camber or caster, it needs a bushing. I don't know how that's easier.

Also, at the dealership I work at it's $250 for a standard 4-wheel alignment and $380 for vehicles with Distronic Cruise Control. I know of another dealer that charges differently based on Airmatic as well.

floyd111

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Re: Rear End Alignment
« Reply #5 on: 17 April 2019, 09:35 AM »
WTH?? 250-300 for an alignment? That is insane. Thought I had reason to be disgruntled of at a 30-50usd rate here.

Squiggle Dog

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Re: Rear End Alignment
« Reply #6 on: 17 April 2019, 12:37 PM »
WTH?? 250-300 for an alignment? That is insane. Thought I had reason to be disgruntled of at a 30-50usd rate here.

When I would go to the Mercedes dealership in Fife, Washington, they charged $60 for a front end alignment and $60 for a rear end alignment. So, I paid $120 even though I should have only paid $60.

I called the local dealership here in Peoria, Arizona, and the lady on the phone said it would be about $350! Then I called other dealerships in the valley, and they wanted around $250-$300. Insane. I called several alignment shops in the valley, and they didn't seem confident that they could do an alignment on my car. Finally, I found Jack's Auto Alignment & Brakes in Phoenix that can do it, for roughly $120 if I remember correctly. They do work for MB Motors.
Stop paying for animal cruelty and slaughter. Go vegan! https://tryveg.com/

1967 W110 Universal Wagon, Euro, Turbo Diesel, Tail Fins, 4 Speed Manual Column Shift, A/C
1980 W116 300SD Turbo Diesel, DB479 Walnut Brown, Sunroof, Heated Seats, 346,000+ Miles

TJ 450

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Re: Rear End Alignment
« Reply #7 on: 17 April 2019, 08:05 PM »
There is an art to aligning these cars properly. I daresay, at the cheap rate, it won’t be optimal. It takes some patience to get it right.

Tim
1976 450SEL 6.9 1432
1969 300SEL 6.3 1394

OLDGOLD

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Re: Rear End Alignment
« Reply #8 on: 18 April 2019, 07:24 AM »
There really is an art to aligning these cars. We have the most up-to-date Hunter computerized alignment racks and it's still not easy. Even if just the ride height isn't set correctly, you can wear completely through a set of tires in less than a couple thousand miles. I've had it happen to a few of my customers and it's not a fun conversation!

Squiggle Dog

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Re: Rear End Alignment
« Reply #9 on: 18 April 2019, 10:06 AM »
Ride height? And to make it worse, I've been informed that it often takes 2-3 alignments after new parts are installed because things will settle. That's a lot of money at those rates!
Stop paying for animal cruelty and slaughter. Go vegan! https://tryveg.com/

1967 W110 Universal Wagon, Euro, Turbo Diesel, Tail Fins, 4 Speed Manual Column Shift, A/C
1980 W116 300SD Turbo Diesel, DB479 Walnut Brown, Sunroof, Heated Seats, 346,000+ Miles

floyd111

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Re: Rear End Alignment
« Reply #10 on: 18 April 2019, 08:48 PM »
I can't judge the ride height thing, for that is illegal here, but in all my years of visiting alignment shops I have never seen any issue worth mentioning. The computer will tell you what the error is, before and after. If you're in the 0.05% area, you should be fine.
My cars go up a 20-25% slope mountain road, 3 miles long, with endless zig-zags, twice a day, and it's concrete, in a pretty abysmal shape. On top of that I fancy myself a rally driver so, despite the 1200ft drop along the road, i race that thing up and down as fast as physically possible. Naturally, it causes masses of wear and tear, so i am constantly changing large and small essential suspension parts, as well as drive shafts and steering racks. Each time, when changing front end parts like that, an alignment is required.
In 14 years of living like this, I have never seen my front end requiring alignment due to whatever kind of "wear and tear". If I add the other 50 cars I raced in some 40 countries, I can only conclude the same thing. Unless I hit something hard like a road shoulder, a massive pothole at high speed, the wheels stay where they should be. There has never been any issue with "setting of new parts", or any alignment that was poorly done. The computer don't lie, and laser is  pretty precise. All of that in a country where it's a national sport for mechanics to do most things in life things as uninterested, untrained and unmotivated as they can away with.. cynically spoken. (just crashed and totaled my CRV for a second time in 3 months because of failing brake lines in the hands of yet another retarded mechanic) So if the car mechanics here are indeed too mentally backwards to fix a simple brake line, doing the alignment perfectly must be a walk in the park.

TJ 450

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Re: Rear End Alignment
« Reply #11 on: 19 April 2019, 05:23 AM »
The idea is that the alignment will need to be adjusted once the new bushings begin to compress, which is the settling component.

It might also be a disclaimer where the job has been a half-arsed one too.

To be honest though, I never had to do this and my car still tracks straight and feels right on the road. The tyres are wearing evenly too.

Tim
1976 450SEL 6.9 1432
1969 300SEL 6.3 1394

jtwoods4

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Re: Rear End Alignment
« Reply #12 on: 07 May 2019, 05:23 AM »
The rear end does not align.
1980 300SD