Last post on Feb 25, 2013 at 10:12 AM
You are in the Toyota Matrix
What is this discussion about?
Toyota Matrix, Tires, Wheels, Wagon
#234 of 265 Re: Matrix/tires [friday414]
Feb 05, 2010 (4:23 am)
Let me confirm what Friday said:
The alignment specs for the Matrix include a rear camber of 1.45° ±0.50°. My experience is that anytime the camber is specified over 1°, then the vehicle is likely to have tire wear issues.
But what triggers this wear is the toe. The rear toe is specified as 0° ±0.20° (per side). My experience is that anything over 0.06° (again per side) leads to wear issues.
This means that not all Matrix owners are going to experience this wear - and it's going to depend on how far off the nominal value the vehicle is.
This also means that vehicle can experience tire wear issues even if the alignment is "IN SPEC",
And lastly, it also means the tires are not the source of the problem - which would explain why folks have seen the wear on more than just the original tires.
But you should be aware that most alignment techs aren't savvy enough to recognize the issues about tolerance. They are usually a "set and forget" type. This would be especially true at a car dealership - where they probably have explicit instructions to set the alignment at the factory values. Most of the time this is OK, and it makes sense in the context of trying to do maintain what the alignment setting are when the vehicle leaves the shop. It just makes sense that they ALL be set according to the factory setting, so if the vehicle comes back with an alignment issue, it would be clear that the vehicle encountered an object that changed the settings.
So my advice would be to take the vehicle to an alignment shop NOT affiliated with a dealership and have them set the camber below 1°, and the toe to the nominal value.
#235 of 265 Re: Matrix/tires [capriracer]
Feb 05, 2010 (5:40 am)
Great reply! I did not have the specs but I have an understanding of how a suspension works. At the dealer, the SM said our car got 28K miles out of tires that normally just get 10K before they were worn out. He said my wife must be very easy on the car. She is the primary driver and she IS very gentle on the car. I noticed the noise and thought it may be wheel bearings. Then after talking with him and trying to understand how she was at fault for her "problem" he told us she is making the car turn too often. I can see that there is no way they are going to do anything. The offer to waive the $15 installation fee on a new set of tires just made me madder! I repeat that this is my last Toyota. I was duped by their highly successful racing programs over the years thinking it would carry over.
#236 of 265 Re: Matrix/tires [capriracer]
Feb 06, 2010 (1:36 pm)
I respect your expertise.
However, all the camber and toe #s on my Matrix meet your criteria, and the edge wear only happens on the front tires.
#237 of 265 Re: Matrix/tires [circuitsmith]
Feb 07, 2010 (5:00 am)
It wasn't clear, but my earlier post was about irregular wear - commonly called "Cupping".
You should also be aware that tire wear is very complex and even vehicles with the alignment settings outside the settings I stated MAY get even wear. It's kind of a "tendency" sort of thing.
But in your case, there are some questions that your earlier posts don't answer:
Were the front tires EVER on the rear? If so, then it's quite possible that the wear occurred on the rear - where there is a lot of camber - and wasn't noticed. Then when those rear tires were rotated to the front, the front positions added wear on top of the wear that was already there, making it appear that the wear occurred on the front.
Plus, it's also possible to get the type of wear you describe from "spirited" driving - and this would include sharp turns when pulling into a parking spot.
I did a quick look at the alignment specs for the front of the matrix and I see 2 things:
1) The front camber spec + the tolerance does have a range from +0.18° to -1.32° - so it's possible for the front to be "in Spec" but over -1°.
2) The front caster spec is a bit on the high side - 2.78° ± 0.75°. Caster can be considered "Camber gain on turning", and that would add camber during cornering situations. So if you do a lot of turns compared to how much you drive straight ahead - in other words, short trips - then you could also experience wear on only one side.
#238 of 265 Re: Matrix/tires [capriracer]
Feb 07, 2010 (4:15 pm)
Front and rear camber are negative and less than 1°. I've misplaced the alignment printout so I don't have specific numbers.
When I got the car it had 8100 miles. The rear tires looked nearly new and the fronts had some wear on the inside edge. I had the Toyota dealer rotate them before I drove it away.
For the next 7000 miles I watched as the inside edges wore away on the front tires. At that point I had the tires flipped on the rims.
I drive pretty gently most of the time. Stop and go city driving.
#239 of 265 Re: Dealership [sgracie]
Feb 18, 2010 (7:15 am)
Since I last posted on this topic, I've probably logged about 25K+ highway miles on my 08 matrix (new goidyears about that time). It's been a source of constant consideration....oil change and tire rotation every 4-5K miles and paying attention to how the car tracked after each rotation. I even played around with different combinations of front to back, cross cross etc. There's been trips where it seemed to drive very straight and others where it still drifted s bit. Things are better since replacing the tires. I have to imagine that the profile of the matrix makes it more susecptable to winds too. My final deduction was that since my rear total toe was ok, but the rear drivers toe is actually just barely out of spec, perhaps that is causing uneven wear on that tire which becomes more noticable when on the front.
Can't say I am happy to see what is happening with Toyota With all the recall crap but part of me is. I remember back to when I was incredibly frustrated with this...the thought of having committed myself to $20K+ for a car that wouldn't even drive straight...and to have multiple dealers tell me there was nothing more they could do ad it was within spec, it was the road, etc. (essentially, "hey, you're supposed to keep you hands on the wheel and your eyes in the road), it does in hindsight bring mr a little satisfaction. Afterall, in the last decade, before buying toyotas we've owned five new fords and one used ford and not one ever had as much trouble finding straight ahead as both our toyotas. (yeah, same issue with a corolla though itcwas remedied with one alignment)
#240 of 265 Re: Dealership [124spider]
Feb 18, 2010 (7:37 am)
I've had similar problems with an extra sensitive rear alignment on my 06 solara convertible resulting in excessive premature wear. The dealership has responded by doing an alignment check at every oil change period and free adjustment if neccesary. They also credited me for a prorated portion of wear on the tires.
An overall hassle and it took alot of effort for them to admit the alignment was the issue, not the tire.
#241 of 265 Re: so whats the final answer for matrix? [unclesalami]
Feb 18, 2010 (11:33 pm)
This is a follow-up to my original reply #191. Just over a year from that post and in 9 months of actual driving, I put another 15,000 miles on the tires. Found that I had replaced the Continental's at 33,000 and now have twice that mileage on the Michelin Exalto A/S tires. I'm glad I haven't experienced any of the problems I read about. Again, I aligned the wheels when I purchased the tires, and haven't done a thing since. I have no vibration or pulling. Based on all of this, I expect another 9,000 miles easily (75K on a 45K tire!). As I said, I feel really fortunate after reading all the problems others have experienced.
#242 of 265 Re: tire pressure warning light [stk2]
Jun 16, 2010 (9:42 am)
I had the same thing happen on my 2007 matrix. I had all 4 tires checkked for pressure and have to check the spare now. Will let you know...
#243 of 265 Re: PROBLEM SOLVED, APPARENTLY [rocky101]
Aug 04, 2010 (5:48 pm)
I have a 2006 Matrix XR and had the tires worn out in 30000miles. It's the negative camber problem, but within the specs. I am interested in installing two camber kit bolts, but not sure if it's safe to replace the upper bolts at the strut/knucle joint. Have you had any problems after installing these camber bolts in the upper holes?