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You & Your Car

Why does my car ‘slide’ to the left or right? Add to ...

I have a 2003 Infiniti Q45. While travelling on uneven road, the car slides a little to the left or right. Is it a shocks or steering rod problem or anything else? – Sohail

I assume you mean the car pulls or tends to move rather than slides. The degree of this tendency is critical.

Something as simple as a few pounds of pressure difference in the front tires can cause a vehicle to wander slightly off line. Tire choice can also play a role with some more apt to follow any slight variation in road surface or slope away from the crown of the road, especially if they are wider than the size specified for the vehicle or mounted on wheels with the incorrect amount of offset.

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Assuming you have the right tires on the right wheels inflated to the right pressure, the problem likely lies with incorrect alignment; this most commonly occurs with the vehicle straying from the intended direction on a flat road surface. This can be the result of worn or damaged suspension or steering components.

Uneven tire wear is a good indication of what the problem might be. If the outer edges of the tire are worn more than the centre and they have been correctly inflated, that would indicate an out-of-alignment issue.

It is possible the front end – one or both wheels – came into contact with a curb or other solid surface, causing damage or misalignment.

Take your car to the dealer or a shop that specializes in wheel/tire/alignment. It take sophisticated equipment and proper training to deal with this issue.

Send your automotive maintenance and repair questions to globedrive@globeandmail.com

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