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Discussion Starter #1
(I had this in the wrong forum index so I'll back to back messages. This was originally posted around 9/19)

Problem - The Sentras commonly do not meet Nissan Specs for rear alignment. Many are off about 1.2 degrees or about 3/8 inches for Toe In.
Symptom - excessive rear tire wear demonstrated by diagonal wear lines and load tire noise. Effectively hidden during the warranty period by rotating the tires. Refer to Honda Service Bulletin 08-001 for a good explanation and pictures. Honda has a similar problem that they owned up to and are correcting. What does that say about Nissan?

Dealer - I have never seen this problem before. Response - it is well documented in various forums and Nissan Technical is aware of the problem. Dealer -Adjustment coverage is only for 12K/12 months. Response - rear alignment is not an adjustable item so is covered for 36 months. Dealer - problem is caused because tires not rotated. Response - the fronts don't show the wear, diagonal wear is caused by alignment. Dealer - the problem can not be adjusted. Response - that is the 1st step for applying the lemon law. Dealer - it will cost you $79.95 for me to check the alignment. Response - look at the tires, it is a part defect problem, do what you need to do to do the analysis for free under warranty.

Repair - Dealer can replace the rear axle but make sure that they also have the necessary aftermarket shims and technical ability to shim the spindle into alignment if needed. The replacement axle is not expected to be any better than the 1st axle.

If you are out of warranty then find a good shop specializing in alignmkent and suspension repair. Installing the spindle shims is not complicated.
 

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Discussion Starter #2
Many Nissan Sentra rear axles are mismanufactured with a huge toe in.
Nissan actively discourages/forbids delearships to put in shims to correct the rear alignment.
Specific Nissan Sentra calibrated shims can be obtained from rockauto or NAPA. Look under suspension parts. Shims are about $13 each.
There is significant negative camber by specification on the rear so tires should be rotated.
If the rear tires show a diagonal wear pattern then it is toe misalignment. See Honda Service bulletin 08-001 for pictures and Honda's fix for a similar problem.
Changing the rear axle does not fix the problem and the dealer will refuse to do further work to fix the problem. It becomes the customer's problem.
Working with the dealer (Hoselton in my case) is a worthless waste of time. After their repair, my "front" alignment was way out and the alignment sheet that I received a copy of was proven to be horribly incorrect.
Nissan does not provide repair instructions for rear toe alignment nor are their Nissan part numbers for the shims.
Warranty for adjustable alignment is only 12K miles. For defective parts like the axle it is 36K miles
Find a good repair shop with a John Beam optical alignment system and bite the bullet and get Nissan's poor quality repaired.
email me if you want the timeline and actions since 9/19 that will end with a proper alignment at a qualified shop on Nov 5th.
[email protected]

On 11/5 my Sentra was correctly repaired by Phil's Automotive in Ontario NY. The rear wheel alignment was finished with a shim to the axle on the right rear. It was reconfirmed again by Phil's that the front alignment as received back from Hoselton after Hoselton replaced the rear axle and tried to align the car was tremendously off so a full 4 wheel alignment was performed. I also had Phil's replace the 2 rear tires which were pretty bald because of the misalignment inherent in the car as purchased.
The handling is better, the tire howl is gone. Phil's did a very good job of making my car right after Hoseltons (dealer) couldn't finish the repair and Nissan not acknowledging it as a Nissan problem.
I'll put together a letter showing all of my attempts to get Nissan or the dealer to make my car meet Nissan specs since Sept 19th and will copy in the key people unable to help me - Hoselton Nissan GM, Mark Allen (Nissan Regional Consumer Affairs 866-799-1690 x1417), and Tiffany Madden (Nissan Customer Service 800-647-7261 X41676)
Nissan still would rather pay $1,000+ in warranty replacement of the rear axle which does not fully correct the problem than document work instructions to insert $13 shims to align the axle for about a 1/2 hour job per side plus the cost of a 4 wheel alignment.
So I feel that Nissan should owe me -
$40 for Phil's to confirm that the car was very out of alignment after the Hoselton repair.
$13 for the calibrated shim for the Sentra that is easily available.
$40 for Phil's to install the shim
$80 for Phil's to do a good 4 wheel alignment
$80 prorated tread wear for the Nissan original alignment problem

If you have similar problems, you now have enough information to know what to do. If you want to see how I came to the conclusions that I did then just start googling 'Nissan Tire problem' and variations.

I'm now happy with my Nissan Sentra again.
 

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I had an identical experience with my 2007 Sentra. After months of haggling through all of the Nissan mazes, they offered me $2,000 and two new tires to go away. I took it, and instead of going away, I went to a wheel alignment specialist, and for $325, he corrected the problem. It sounds like I made out pretty good, especially since my gas mileage went up from 34 to 38 on the highway. But my car had 21 k miles on it when it was finally repaired, and so I missed out on 4 extra MPG's for all those miles. The amount I spent on extra fuel was roughly $1,900!
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Nissan paid after the BBB complaint

I just asked Nissan through a BBB complaint to pay my actual costs which they did after minor haggling.
The car is an entirely different car. The handling is now excellent and a lot of fun and the snow handling is great.
To bad that Nissan doesn't have any support for a nice product.
 

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Sentra tire wear

I am so glad I just found this forum! My 2008 Sentra was just in an accident due to slippery conditions on my worn tires. I have attempted to rotate the tires as scheduled and checked them again before winter. I could not believe that the rears always looked worse than the front. I also could not believe all four were getting pretty bad and the car isn't one year old yet. My car is at the dealer and I am getting the run around between them and the insurance adjuster. I am armed with new ammo and can't wait to call when they open. The part that seems odd is they went from recommending a 4 wheel allignment to only recommending a front wheel allignment. I hope they own up to the problem before I have to blame the entire accident on them through the BBB. I blamed my poor MPG on the cold Michigan weather lately, but I have seen it dip from an average of 31 down to 27 mpg the last few months.

Thanks again for helping me out.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Sentra, Rear Alignment, consolidated details

Since the defect came with the car, I'd still place a complaint with the BBB even if out of warranty. Be sure to keep good records of efforts to have Nissan fix the problem. At some point just do a Google search on "BBB and Lemon Law". Nissan participates in BBB car complaints.
You need to find a good repair shop that can take the rear alignment reading for you in degrees. That costs about $40. Most shops do not have the shims to shim the axle so you and the repair tech should pick out the Sentra shims that you need. You can find them on the NAPA web site or at RockAuto.com and take a print out with you to the repair shop. There are a variety of shims in calibrated degrees. The shims are about $14 each. I used NAPA because I could get the shims that I needed quicker.
Now take the shims back to your repair shop along with your alignment read out and ask them to install them. This is a simple process. The bearing box just bolts to the axle ends so all they have to do is remove 4 bolts, install
the calibrated shims, and replace the 4 bolts. This should cost you about $25 per side.This should get your rear alignment close enough.
Since alignments are always done from the rear of the car to the front of the car, your front end alignment will now be way off. Front end alignment is adjustable. You will need a full 4 wheel alignment. The cost is about $80.
So you are talking about approx $160 and if your tires are shot then they should be replaced. My car is a commute car so I just asked for the cheapest tires suitable for commute driving. The out the door price was about $75 per tire.
Now take all of your discussions with Nissan and the Nissan dealer and record when they were and what was said. You should always file a complaint with Nissan customer service since "it is an axle design problem that makes the car unsafe to drive in slippery conditions and causes excessive tire wear" and get a written answer. Take everything and include it with your BBB complaint along with your out of pocket expense that you want from Nissan.
Honda has a different rear axle set up but the similar problem. Refer to Honda TSB 08-001 for some nice pictures on tire wear. Honda corrected it with a change to the rear upper control arm. Sentra's are different and can not be corrected that way.
Below are the alignment specs for the 2007,2008 Nissan Sentra if your repair shop does not have them.

2008 Nissan Sentra Specs
Front Caster L 5.7, 4.2
R 4.2, 5.7
Camber L 0.9, -0.9
R -0.9, 0.9
Toe L -0.04, 0.04
R 0.04, -0.04
Rear Camber L -1, -2
R -1, -2
Toe L -0.12, 0.2
R .2, -0.12
Total Toe -0.24, 0.39

That should give everyone the details that they need.
 

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sentra tire wear

I am almost to the end of my sentra tire problem. I am waiting to see how much of my $1700.00 Nissan will cover. My rear toe in is corrected witnin the original specs. BEWARE THAT NISSAN IS NOW UPDATING EVERY SHOPS COMPUTER SYSTEM WITH NEW SPECS. How can they change the specs for a real axle that can't be adjusted????????????? Anyway. I still need to find shop that specializes in allignments to make sure my car is good to go.
 

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I'm not sure if this is the right place to post this, but I have a 2007 Sentra 2.0S and have symptoms consistent with rear alignment problem described in this thread. I was just wondering if anyone could recommend an alignment shop in the GTA Toronto or Southern Ontario area that was able to correct this problem for you. Thanks. I just want to get this corrected before putting on some new winter tires.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
The fix is simple enough for any trusted shop

I don't know of a shop in your area but I should update my information. When I finally got my rear axle properly aligned at about 25000 miles, I threw away the ruined rear tires, moved the front to the back and bought new front tires. I do not rotate my tires because it is a commute car with 90% highway.
This month I will turn over 60,000 miles on the original front tires that I moved to the rear and there is still tread left.
 

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Did Nissan fix the rear end alignment problem with the 2009 & 2010 Sentras? I just bought a 2010 Sentra SR about 6 weeks ago and I'm hoping they did.
 

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Rear alignment update: I took my 07 Sentra to a well recommended alignment shop to perform a front and rear alignment. They found that the rear alignment was off, specifically the toe-in (as suspected). They installed shims to to fix the problem, only cost $35 more on top of the regular $100 for the alignment. Will update in a few months if rear tire wear and fuel economy have improved.
 

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I've had a very similar experience, got my '07 in '08 with 16k miles, thought I got a great deal, now I realize I got a pile of crap. Within 4k miles the tires that came with the car were shot. Took it to Nissan, they told me it was an alignment problem, not under warranty, and that I had to get a four-wheel alignment every 12k miles! I had a '92 Camry that I bought in '99, put 260k miles on it and only did two alignments ever. That averages to 130k between alignments, and Nissan wants me to spend $100+ every six months or so? Not to mention when I finally got the recall notice for the airbags, they informed me of the brake master cylinder recall which I did NOT hear of, so if the brakes had gone out and I wrecked, congratulations, the airbags don't work properly either! Also, not to nitpick but the cheap plastic covers on the visor mirrors both broke off within months of buying the car, I've been a quart low on oil twice when getting an oil change, yet no sign of leaks so apparently it's burning oil sporadically, and now it sounds like the power steering is going out. First chance I get I'm going back to Toyota. Oh, and the best mileage I've got out of this 2.0 auto POS is 25mpg highway.
 

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The bad alignment will cause bad mileage !!!
The alignment doesn't need to be done that often this is dealer bull to get rid of you.
Get the alignment and the rear spindles shimmed and you will be set.
Ask before you take it in if they have the shims for the rear toe adjust.

As far as Toyota goes they are not without there problems either, I quit them after three new cars each with a major problem, and their secret campaigns to avoid a recall just made things worse.
 

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Every company has their lemons, but at least our previous two Camrys didn't actively try to kill us. Today in the rain the rear kicked out, nearly turned us sideways on the highway. I know the Firestone has the shims, I talked to another Sentra owner with the exact same problem (Nissan, you listening to this?!) and they fixed him right up, $179 lifetime 4-wheel alignment, took them two hours on a busy Friday. I'm planning on sending a copy of the receipt and printouts of some of these threads to Nissan along with a note to remove head from sphincter.
 

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(I had this in the wrong forum index so I'll back to back messages. This was originally posted around 9/19)

Problem - The Sentras commonly do not meet Nissan Specs for rear alignment. Many are off about 1.2 degrees or about 3/8 inches for Toe In.
Symptom - excessive rear tire wear demonstrated by diagonal wear lines and load tire noise. Effectively hidden during the warranty period by rotating the tires. Refer to Honda Service Bulletin 08-001 for a good explanation and pictures. Honda has a similar problem that they owned up to and are correcting. What does that say about Nissan?

Dealer - I have never seen this problem before. Response - it is well documented in various forums and Nissan Technical is aware of the problem. Dealer -Adjustment coverage is only for 12K/12 months. Response - rear alignment is not an adjustable item so is covered for 36 months. Dealer - problem is caused because tires not rotated. Response - the fronts don't show the wear, diagonal wear is caused by alignment. Dealer - the problem can not be adjusted. Response - that is the 1st step for applying the lemon law. Dealer - it will cost you $79.95 for me to check the alignment. Response - look at the tires, it is a part defect problem, do what you need to do to do the analysis for free under warranty.

Repair - Dealer can replace the rear axle but make sure that they also have the necessary aftermarket shims and technical ability to shim the spindle into alignment if needed. The replacement axle is not expected to be any better than the 1st axle.

If you are out of warranty then find a good shop specializing in alignmkent and suspension repair. Installing the spindle shims is not complicated.

you idiot, sucks to own a sentra huh. f**king stupid american, everything is a defect to you, isn't it? you ever think you might be the defect. nissan manufactured the rear alignment and front alignment to match the crowns in the road. if you say you are having such an issue, it may be all in your head. good luck buddy, you'll probably have flying demons scratching at your paint too causing rust, and that'll be a defect to you..when in fact you are hitting rocks and pebbles which chip your paint. not a defect either.

stupid ppl complain too much on this site. just build a rapport with your dlr, and spend the right amount of money, you'll find your "defects" might go away due to your own due diligence.

american greedbags.
 

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Many Nissan Sentra rear axles are mismanufactured with a huge toe in.
Nissan actively discourages/forbids delearships to put in shims to correct the rear alignment.
Specific Nissan Sentra calibrated shims can be obtained from rockauto or NAPA. Look under suspension parts. Shims are about $13 each.
There is significant negative camber by specification on the rear so tires should be rotated.
If the rear tires show a diagonal wear pattern then it is toe misalignment. See Honda Service bulletin 08-001 for pictures and Honda's fix for a similar problem.
Changing the rear axle does not fix the problem and the dealer will refuse to do further work to fix the problem. It becomes the customer's problem.
Working with the dealer (Hoselton in my case) is a worthless waste of time. After their repair, my "front" alignment was way out and the alignment sheet that I received a copy of was proven to be horribly incorrect.
Nissan does not provide repair instructions for rear toe alignment nor are their Nissan part numbers for the shims.
Warranty for adjustable alignment is only 12K miles. For defective parts like the axle it is 36K miles
Find a good repair shop with a John Beam optical alignment system and bite the bullet and get Nissan's poor quality repaired.
email me if you want the timeline and actions since 9/19 that will end with a proper alignment at a qualified shop on Nov 5th.
wilch[email protected]

On 11/5 my Sentra was correctly repaired by Phil's Automotive in Ontario NY. The rear wheel alignment was finished with a shim to the axle on the right rear. It was reconfirmed again by Phil's that the front alignment as received back from Hoselton after Hoselton replaced the rear axle and tried to align the car was tremendously off so a full 4 wheel alignment was performed. I also had Phil's replace the 2 rear tires which were pretty bald because of the misalignment inherent in the car as purchased.
The handling is better, the tire howl is gone. Phil's did a very good job of making my car right after Hoseltons (dealer) couldn't finish the repair and Nissan not acknowledging it as a Nissan problem.
I'll put together a letter showing all of my attempts to get Nissan or the dealer to make my car meet Nissan specs since Sept 19th and will copy in the key people unable to help me - Hoselton Nissan GM, Mark Allen (Nissan Regional Consumer Affairs 866-799-1690 x1417), and Tiffany Madden (Nissan Customer Service 800-647-7261 X41676)
Nissan still would rather pay $1,000+ in warranty replacement of the rear axle which does not fully correct the problem than document work instructions to insert $13 shims to align the axle for about a 1/2 hour job per side plus the cost of a 4 wheel alignment.
So I feel that Nissan should owe me -
$40 for Phil's to confirm that the car was very out of alignment after the Hoselton repair.
$13 for the calibrated shim for the Sentra that is easily available.
$40 for Phil's to install the shim
$80 for Phil's to do a good 4 wheel alignment
$80 prorated tread wear for the Nissan original alignment problem

If you have similar problems, you now have enough information to know what to do. If you want to see how I came to the conclusions that I did then just start googling 'Nissan Tire problem' and variations.

I'm now happy with my Nissan Sentra again.
keep going to independent's because nissan wants nothing of you, you are not a nissan owner, but merely a nissan driver. waaaaaaaaa, waaaaaaaaaaaa, we'll send you the wamabulance. you baby.
 

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youngandrus, you are a fool, or you work for nissan. It is a problem and you need to act like it's not? Stupid much? Crown in the road? If all your roads have the same crown you obviously don't live on this planet......
 

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you idiot, sucks to own a sentra huh. f**king stupid american, everything is a defect to you, isn't it? you ever think you might be the defect. nissan manufactured the rear alignment and front alignment to match the crowns in the road. if you say you are having such an issue, it may be all in your head. good luck buddy, you'll probably have flying demons scratching at your paint too causing rust, and that'll be a defect to you..when in fact you are hitting rocks and pebbles which chip your paint. not a defect either.

stupid ppl complain too much on this site. just build a rapport with your dlr, and spend the right amount of money, you'll find your "defects" might go away due to your own due diligence.

american greedbags.
These cars are out of Nissan's own spec, and the tire wear problem is real.

If you insist on being offensive you will get banned.
 

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For those of you who have had the shim kit installed did any of you have any ABS problems. My local alignment shop stated installing the shim kit could make the ABS light come on. This is a very reputable shop who I have dealt with before. We have a 2008 out of warranty with the rear axle problem.

Thanks
 
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