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Alignment After Lowering Your Volvo

2019-01-15 - ipd Staff

Disclaimer: Direct from ipd’s Tech Tip archive!  This tech tip contains information from previous publications.  Products mentioned may not be available or the information may not be accurate due to changes in supply, manufacturing, or part number association.  Please contact ipd Customer Support if you have further questions.

850, S70, V70, C70, S80

Getting proper alignment after lowering your car is important. Not only to achieve the best tire wear, but to also get the best overall handling. The only real adjustment available to you is the toe in. This is simply adjust-ed with shortening or lengthening the tie rods on the steering rack. Like most cars with the fixed front struts Volvos have very little adjustment to change camber. This is an important adjustment because when there is too much positive camber the tires will wear on the outside. More importantly, with positive camber, the tire is preloaded in a turn and will cause poor adhesion when cornering. Negative camber will wear the inside of the tire and in turns will actually set the tires up for the best handling. The trade off is the poor inside wear pattern on the tires.

You should try to set the car up as close to the factory specs as possible - for best tire wear anyway. Most alignment shops know the trick for getting the specs you need but you may suggest the following. The struts are mounted to the spindle with two bolts. Loosen both upper and lower bolts, remove the upper bolt and elon-gate the hole horizontally(no more than 8mm) in the strut so the spindle will move in the direction needed. Never change the hole in the spindle, as this pax should stay intact. Use a larger washer if necessary to cover the modified upper hole.