back tires like this / \

flan

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i put it up on the lift, shook everything, inspected bushings. can weak shocks do this? I figured springs is what sets the ride height? Inside of my tires are cupping due to this.
 

flan

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04 tdi jetta
it seems to be something wore to make them tip inwards, but looking around nothing is visibly worn. as i jack up the back of the car the tires look like they should. seemed initially like a ride height issue.

I dont have alot of junk in the trunk either :D
 

IndigoBlueWagon

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Others will disagree, but I think worn rear axle bushings cause this. My son just bought an '02 Jetta that had the bushings replaced shortly before he bought it, but the rear tires are trashed. Totally worn on the inside. Guess they didn't replace those. I know that the rear bushings on my wagon are due for replacement, rear camber is slightly out.
 

turbovan+tdi

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Axle bushings shouldn't affect camber due to placement of them-mine are worn and my camber is in spec. If you're wearing the tires that badly, then the car is lowered or the beam is bent.

Front, same thing, if the ride height is stock, then the camber will be in spec if the bushings etc are in good shape. To properly check front end components for wear, you must have it loaded at stock height, so either jack up at the ball joint end with a jack or jack it up and put jackstands under the bj area to simulate ride height. Things that are tight when hanging suddenly become loose when loaded.
 

Blackjedi

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This seems to be a common thing with mk4s I have noticed. My back and fronts both sit like this / \ it still drives straight, tires wear faster on the insides but not really enough to have premature tire replacements. I have brought it to alignment shops that say there isn't anything they can do but shim it. They showed me their diagrams of how much my alignment is out and it is within spec... I don't get it, oh well I'm going to drive it untill the wheels fall off, put new wheels on and drive it untill compression is so low it won't even start any more ;)
 

TdiRN

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Would bad wheel bearings cause it?
 

turbovan+tdi

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Would bad wheel bearings cause it?
Yes and no, if they were that worn, your wheels would be wobbling and you'd have this god awful grinding noise or the whum whump whump sound.
 

lil'oilburner

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i put it up on the lift, shook everything, inspected bushings. can weak shocks do this? I figured springs is what sets the ride height? Inside of my tires are cupping due to this.
Could be sagging springs. Springs can get permanently compressed if overloaded.

Pic? It's worth a k werdz
 

CoolAirVw

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some cars have a certain amount of camber in the rear on purpose. Its there to make the cars handle better in turns.

Have an alignment shop check it and they might tell you its normal. (set to specifications.) Usually they wont make any attempt to straighten it because then you'll be used to a car that handles good in turns and you'll end up in a car that handles poorly in turns so you'll either complain about it or crash it. Also they are not easily adjustable.
 

flan

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It's just that the inside of the rear tires cup. Makes it to the point I can't rotate them because they ride and sound like crap on the front
 

GreenLantern_TDI

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Rotation schedule and pattern? I found that my tires must be rotated every 5k to prevent cupping. I also do non-drive side swap pattern.
 

flan

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I went 9k. The car came with directionals too. I understand they are not the best on this car. As far as rotation pattern I hear much debate about that. If you do anything other then swap the front to the back belts can shift, etc
 

turbovan+tdi

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I went 9k. The car came with directionals too. I understand they are not the best on this car. As far as rotation pattern I hear much debate about that. If you do anything other then swap the front to the back belts can shift, etc
Directional tires suck on a FWD car. Rotation depends on if the tires cup, but usually, I cross rotate the fronts to the back, this flattens them out, then the backs go straight forward. If you have cupped back tires from alignment, lack of rotation or whatever, then I X them. Belt shift is nonsense, this comes from the old days of bias ply tires,.

I rotate every 5000 km's or more depending on the cupping. When I bought the black one, it has directional Michelins, the rears were badly cupped so I ran them on the front for awhile to help straigthen them out, it worked but still a bit noisey, so I turned them around on put them on the back for now, its summer so no biggie. Nice and quiet and they are getting flatter.
 
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Herm TDI

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i put it up on the lift, shook everything, inspected bushings. can weak shocks do this? I figured springs is what sets the ride height? Inside of my tires are cupping due to this.
~~~~~~~~~
Replace the rear axle bushings AND the stub axles.
Keep in mind that replacing the stub axles will include replacing both rear wheel bearings. This should solve your problem.
 

GreenLantern_TDI

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So basically everyone is right. Good alignment and non-worn components plus a good rotation schedule equals a happy motorist. Even if you have weak suspension if you rotate often tires last longer.
 

IndigoBlueWagon

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Alignment on my wagon is in spec. However, it destroyed a set of Michelin Pilot Exalto A/S tires. Chopped them enough so they got very noisy when only half worn. I do rotate them, but they're directional so I can't swap side-to-side. Lesson learned. No more directional tires on MKIV cars.
 

turbovan+tdi

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You said all tire wire is caused by alignment, balance etc, which is wrong. There are many factors even if the alignment is spot on, including tire brand/design etc. Now can't we all just get along? ;)
 
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turbovan+tdi

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quartersaw

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Alignment on my wagon is in spec. However, it destroyed a set of Michelin Pilot Exalto A/S tires. Chopped them enough so they got very noisy when only half worn. I do rotate them, but they're directional so I can't swap side-to-side. Lesson learned. No more directional tires on MKIV cars.
How is the camber on your '02? Mine '02 wagon is like this:/ \ @ 229K miles. Any recommendations?
 

IndigoBlueWagon

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How is the camber on your '02? Mine '02 wagon is like this:/ \ @ 229K miles. Any recommendations?
/ \ isn't exactly a measurement. Last alignment (three weeks ago) rear camber is -1.73 left, -1.34 right. Left is slightly out of spec, minimum is -1.62. But I have the original rear axle bushings which do need replacement at 306K miles.
 

turbovan+tdi

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That's a lot of shims if it really looks like that pic, :p
 

CoolAirVw

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I'll repeat what I said previously.. These cars (mk4 as per original poster) have lots of rear camber to help them handle in corners. Its not really adjustable and attempts "shim it" will trade better tire wear for a car that is less stable in corners.

Have an alignment shop check and see if its in spec and if it is then leave it alone. Live with the tire wear or rotate on a annoyingly frequent basis.
 

flan

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I had it up on the lift again yesterday and inspected and found nothing bad. Driver side is cupped worse then pass side though. Not by much but noticeable. I'm attributing it to directional tires and letting it go about 4k miles too long without a rotation. I'll let these current tires die a noisy death then get some non directionals.
 

turbovan+tdi

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I'm curious about this, that you put new tires on the front. The big tire shops say that new tires go on the rear (their policies).

Tire shops also advocate "rotating" tires. I'm sure that this allows them to spot potential sales, but on the other hand it sure seems like it's quite a bit of work doing all those rotations for free.

Lastly, given that tires are really only safe for like 5 years or so, leaving any pair on your car longer than this, even if there's still a lot of tread left, presents a safety issue. I spent a fair amount on truck tires for a truck that gets limited use (farm truck); knowing this aging issue is a factor then makes me wonder whether I shouldn't just look to get cheaper tires?:confused:
Correct, the OE's and everyone wants the good tires on the rear because there isn't much weight back there, so subsubstand tires will make the back want to oversteer unexpectably and most drivers have no clue how to react and correct when that happens. I taught my wife how to correct oversteer. In snowy conditions, I'll put sandbags in the rear of van's or in the truck of FWD cars to help keep the back end planted.
 
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