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Was my 09 TSB done right?

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Old 07-10-2009, 07:32 PM   #1
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Question Was my 09 TSB done right?

Hi Guys! Sorry for boring you guys with another TSB post. After two weeks of effect, I finally got my rear suspension TSB done today -- couldn't have done it without you guys' help, espacially Mr. BUK 0H5.

Let me say the positive things first. The rear suspension is a lot tougher and he handling is better. The ride is not much worse. Overall I love the results. Surprisingly the rear lift for mine is only 1/2" (37" to 37.5"), as oppose to the other cases I've read which are mostly 1" to 1.5" lift.

Now the but... But the dealer didn't do a re-alignment afte installing the new leaf springs. They did a "Basic 9 point inspection" instead. I asked and they told me the tech drove the truck around and found no sign of mis-alignment. I spoke to the service director and she told me that her Toyota rep. told her no alginment is needed if only leaf speings are replaced. Only non-TRDs with the shock upgrade will received the alignment. I pointed out the TSB and they said TSB does not applied to 09s... Can you actually believe that?

I did search and find FL4x4Taco had the same problem. So maybe you can shed some light on this too. Thanks in advance man!

OK, enough bitching for now... I would like to ask the truck/alignment Gurus here a few postive questions with the goal being to solve the problem and get some peace of mind:

1. What is the reason behind the alignment? Some posts said it is the rear lift causing frond wheels sitting at the different angle. But is it true that the lift will eventually settle? In my case, the lift is small. Does it justify no alignment?

2. Why does TSB re-state the alginment specs? Does this mean the specs changed after the TSB? Also, the specs are really loose. For example, for Prerunner TRD OR, the range is 0.099 +/- 0.108...

3. Can a experienced tech tell whether a truck is in- or out- of-alignment by just driving it? How will I know if my truck is out of alignment during daily driving other than measuring the tire thread depths every other week? Mine is not pulling right or left. Is the uneven tire wearing the biggest concern here?

I know this is boring and too many questions... But please please it bothers me ... If I just want to pay another dealer to do the alignment, you know, pay small money and get peace of mind, shall I give them the TSB as a reference too?

I will post some before and after pictures but I doubt the difference is obvious in my case. Does it make sense to you guys?
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Old 07-10-2009, 07:48 PM   #2
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If your truck is a TRD, it only receives rear springs so you don't need to realign it. Non-TRD trucks get new shocks all around too. New shocks = alignment.
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Old 07-10-2009, 07:49 PM   #3
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Unhappy crazy thinking ...

OK, after reading through this website (http://www.familycar.com/Alignment.htm) and sitting there and thinking the geometry until my head hurts, I had some crazy ideas ... you know ... Friday night fun ...

Assuming the biggest mis-alignment factor is the rear lift and thereby the change of leveling, intuitively it should affect the caster the most since they are on the same plane. Then a 1" lift should give us change of anlge of (0.6 degrees) if the wheel base is, say around 100": (1"/(2*PI*100"))*360. Caster spec, on the other hand, (for prerunner TRD OR) is 1.76 +/- 0.75 degrees. The specs is so loose that if may just cover the change.

Also, how can Toyota that how much lift a specific truck gets after TSB? I've seen many numbers here already, leaving the fact that the lift will eventually settle over time. If they don't, does it make sense that the TSB specs are just the same as the original specs?

OK, I'm gonna shut up ...
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Old 07-10-2009, 07:50 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bb609 View Post
If your truck is a TRD, it only receives rear springs so you don't need to realign it. Non-TRD trucks get new shocks all around too. New shocks = alignment.
Hooray!!!
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Old 07-10-2009, 07:56 PM   #5
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the original TSB 0305-08 states....

• TRD Option Package Truck
SU7003 Rear Spring Assembly (Both Sides)
Combo C Alignment
Combo D Front Toe-in
Combo E Front Camber
Combo F Front Caster

i got an alignment on my 07 sport when it was done....they also replaced the springs w/ new ones too though
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Old 07-10-2009, 08:01 PM   #6
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There would be no need for an alignment after just replacing the rear springs, as nothing is adjustable in the rear suspension.

If I put your truck on the alignment rack, and it was within those specs, I wouldn't touch a thing unless you had a pulling/wnadering complaint.
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Old 07-10-2009, 08:02 PM   #7
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You don't need the alignment. If lifting the back 1/2" needed an alignment, than lowering it 1/2" would need the alignment also. Ie... evertime you got in your truck, a passanger, a trailer, groceries and so on. The front shocks on the taco are part of the front suspension, when you replace those shocks you must have the front re-aligned as you have altered these components. No shocks, no alignment. You already have the shocks they would have installed, you are good to go!
So relax and enjoy your taco
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Old 07-10-2009, 08:08 PM   #8
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I got the 4 pack and the alignment on my 09 TRD OR...I really don't think you need the alignment, but I was happy they did it
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Old 07-10-2009, 08:14 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fletch aka View Post
You don't need the alignment. If lifting the back 1/2" needed an alignment, than lowering it 1/2" would need the alignment also. Ie... evertime you got in your truck, a passanger, a trailer, groceries and so on. The front shocks on the taco are part of the front suspension, when you replace those shocks you must have the front re-aligned as you have altered these components. No shocks, no alignment. You already have the shocks they would have installed, you are good to go!
So relax and enjoy your taco
You explained it very clear. Thanks a lot! So the small lift does matter.
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Old 07-10-2009, 08:22 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hendooman View Post
I got the 4 pack and the alignment on my 09 TRD OR...I really don't think you need the alignment, but I was happy they did it
Yeah ... A friend of mine told me that allignment have fair large tolerance anyways.

So I guess even if I'm really picky and take the taco for another alignment, they still may or may not get it that accurate, right?
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Old 07-10-2009, 08:39 PM   #11
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if you don't do it your gonna drive yourself crazy!!! They will get it right, my ride tracks perfect down the road. I couldn't be more pleased. I just can't wait for the rugged fails to go bald so I can get some new shoes!
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Old 07-10-2009, 09:33 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hendooman View Post
if you don't do it your gonna drive yourself crazy!!! They will get it right, my ride tracks perfect down the road. I couldn't be more pleased. I just can't wait for the rugged fails to go bald so I can get some new shoes!

Hmm, the fortune cookie from my dinner today says "Stop worrying and take a chance"... Haha
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Old 07-11-2009, 05:45 AM   #13
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My money is on the lifetime alignment at a place like Firestone- Have them align it once to make sure they are good at it- and then drop the 150 for the lifetime and you are set...

and to answer your #3 question-Yes. I lifted my truck and it was out of alignment but drove fine in a straight line. My Toe was out tho- so every time I took a corner faster than 5mph with more than a 1/4 turn of the steering wheel- I got tire squeal. Got it on the rack and that is all gone now.

Would I want to TRUST the tech to check it in every configuration?? Hell no- Rack it and see what it looks like...You are lucky you got the springs if the dealership is saying "09s aren't on the TSB"...but if you feel cheated- Push the subject.
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Old 07-11-2009, 06:13 AM   #14
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I got a re-alignment after they did my TRD OR truck. It's a good thing they did too, because the toe-in was off, just like I'd suspected, albeit barely outside the acceptable ranges.

You might press the issue or look to have it aligned somewhere...if the price is reasonable.
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Old 07-11-2009, 07:53 AM   #15
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the rear lift does affect your alignment. like you said, your truck is sitting on a "plane", everythings set in a line. your tires turn left and right like they should. you jack up the back, it throws your truck off that "plane (not an airplane either) so now your front tires are turning left and right but at an angle. your turning radius is affected.
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Old 07-11-2009, 08:16 AM   #16
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^That doesn't mean it is not within tolerance, however.
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Old 07-11-2009, 08:22 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brunes View Post
My money is on the lifetime alignment at a place like Firestone- Have them align it once to make sure they are good at it- and then drop the 150 for the lifetime and you are set...

and to answer your #3 question-Yes. I lifted my truck and it was out of alignment but drove fine in a straight line. My Toe was out tho- so every time I took a corner faster than 5mph with more than a 1/4 turn of the steering wheel- I got tire squeal. Got it on the rack and that is all gone now.

Would I want to TRUST the tech to check it in every configuration?? Hell no- Rack it and see what it looks like...You are lucky you got the springs if the dealership is saying "09s aren't on the TSB"...but if you feel cheated- Push the subject.
Hmm, I did some sharp turn after the TSB and didn't noise any weird sound. But I wasn't paying much attention too. I will try it today. The 09 TSB did too a lot effort though, but I'm happy it is done. The allignment should be just a minor issue.

If I go to Firestone for the alignment, the dealers won't void the truck warranty for that, right? It should not but hey they've done unreasonable thing before ...
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Old 07-11-2009, 08:37 AM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jandrews View Post
I got a re-alignment after they did my TRD OR truck. It's a good thing they did too, because the toe-in was off, just like I'd suspected, albeit barely outside the acceptable ranges.

You might press the issue or look to have it aligned somewhere...if the price is reasonable.
Quote:
Originally Posted by JordanAbbott View Post
the rear lift does affect your alignment. like you said, your truck is sitting on a "plane", everythings set in a line. your tires turn left and right like they should. you jack up the back, it throws your truck off that "plane (not an airplane either) so now your front tires are turning left and right but at an angle. your turning radius is affected.
Quote:
Originally Posted by WilsonTheDog View Post
^That doesn't mean it is not within tolerance, however.
Ok, thank you all for the answers. I did some more reading and some articles did say that riding height change is a factor for mis-alignment.

So my understanding at this moment is that the alginment in my case is probably not very bad or way out of acceptable range. But it might be off. It is perhaps not a urgent thing to do a front wheel re-alignment but it is a safer thing to keep it in mind and do it in the near future. What I'm thinking right now is to do a re-alignment after the new spings settled. So how long will it take? I can sure measure them every now and them. From reading other posts, I think it is one week with load and have a week without load.

It seems that Firestone is a good place to try for the task as long as it don't affect the truck's warranty.

Theoritically rear lift changes the front wheel alignment, the unknown here is how much the change is in my case with a small only 1/2" lift. I will put the alignment data here after it is dones. Maybe the adjustment needed is very minor, proving me being totally paranoid again. :-)
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Old 07-11-2009, 09:52 AM   #19
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I'd take it back to the dealer and say it's drifting or something....I'm surprised the dealer didn't perform the alignment...it's under warranty and Toyota is flipping the bill; it's not like the cost is coming out of the dealers pocket.
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Old 07-11-2009, 11:03 AM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by steviestyles View Post
I'd take it back to the dealer and say it's drifting or something....I'm surprised the dealer didn't perform the alignment...it's under warranty and Toyota is flipping the bill; it's not like the cost is coming out of the dealers pocket.
Sigh... They played the Toyota cad again -- told me that Toyota rep. said only perform alignment for TSB with shock change. I already called Toyota 1-800 and see what they say.

Anyways, I think like FL4x4Taco said: they are just being cheap. Do you think dealers do a better alignment job than other garage like Firestone? If not, in the end, I'm not sure I wanna go through another fight for a $50 front wheel alignment... OK, I admit I'm a push-over.
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