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  1. #1
    L6 Experienced Member iluvdeals's Avatar
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    Where to go for Front End Alignment

    I am purchasing some new tires at Costco and it turns out that I need front end alignment too which they do not offer.

    Anyone have any suggestions on where I can go?

    Thanks a bunch! :D
    There is always a way to get it CHEAP!

  2. #2
    L6 Experienced Member CozKramer's Avatar
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    New Car or Old Car? Or rather, Front or Rear wheel drive? If its RWD, its easier as just the front end gets done and most any shop 'should' be able to handle it.. FWD tho, requires all fours to get aligned.. I'd trust a well known tire shop for either car, I don't care much for the brand name, tv commericaled places.. If your in the LA area, there's a place in the valley that I like to goto. The other places I've gotten tires at before all said something was wrong with the car and wouldn't align it.. One shop said my frame was cracked (total BS, just an idiot foreigner), the second shop said I had a broken balljoint (probably true) and stated that the alignment woudln't last so I didn't have it done. Oddly enough, that place is where I put 4, yes 4 tires on my '77 Chevy for a whopping $100.. Cheap tires, but they work fine.. Kicker here is that plce is a smaller place here, and the place that said I had a broken frame was a big chain place and I dropped over 500$ on a set of 5 dunlops.. I guess the general advice I'd have it stay away from the chain places... If your up near the valley, PM me and I'll letcha know of the shops names..

  3. #3
    L6 Experienced Member iluvdeals's Avatar
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    Coz, thanks for all the great info!
    I am in southern O.C. so unfortunately the valley is kind of far.
    I have a 99 Mazda Protege and it's a front wheel drive. I was thinking of going to Just Tires, but I hear ya and I don't think I'll go there. I hope I don't get BS'd when I get this done. How much do you think it should cost me to align this car? Just a rough number please.
    There is always a way to get it CHEAP!

  4. #4
    L6 Experienced Member CozKramer's Avatar
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    Doh! Sorry, don't know any O.C. places.. If you can wait until next Monday, and don't mind a drive to LongBeach you could hitup the HiPo Swapmeet and probably get some leads there for more local shops..

    I wouldn't head to Just Tires either.. Find a smaller place. Try looking around the Auto Row in your area.. There's usually at least one good place around there that all the car lots use.

    For a 4 wheel alignment, probably $75.. It's a rough estimate based on the places here charge 40-50 for a front end alignment on old cars/trucks. I just tried calling the place I goto and they're closed so I can't grab any further details.

    Did the guys at Costco say you needed an alignment or are they just reading the script on new tire purchases? How does the car track currently? If it tracks straight or slightly off, I'd holdoff until I found a shop I liked.. If it's that bad, unfortunatly I'd get it done asap.

    Kinda boggles my mind that Costco there will sell, balance and mount tires but not align them... Did you watch them balance each tire or did you wait in a 'the room'? I ask because sometimes they don't get it right.. That's with anywhere you go tho.. Watch 'em like a hawk.. =)

  5. #5
    L6 Experienced Member iluvdeals's Avatar
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    Actually, I had two different mechanics tell me I need alignment. And yes, my car does not go quite straight. I found a local place here for $50. I figure that should work out.

    Yes, I also found it strange that Costco doesn't align. I also tried Walmart and they don't do it either. I guess some special equipment is needed or something.

    I did not watch them install the tires, but they seem fine. My parents get their tires from there and they seem good.

    Thanks for the help.
    There is always a way to get it CHEAP!

  6. #6
    L6 Experienced Member CozKramer's Avatar
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    The only equip needed is an alignment machine, which looks kinda like a car lift that you drive onto. $50 seems good for the 4wheel align. =) If you notice any corner of the car bumpy over smooth paverment, have that tire rebalanced.

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