Car Doctor Q&A: My Jeep Pulls to the Right. And the Left

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Bitcoin. Pet.com stock. A timeshare in Boca. Used tires. All these things sounded like a great deal at the time, but have left a whole lot of ships dashed on the rocks. This Jeep owner found out why.

Q. I have a 2010 Jeep Grand Cherokee and recently changed the wheels and tires to something a little bigger.

I purchased these tires used and they are in great shape with only about 15,000 miles on them. When I put the new tires on, the truck pulled to the left and the steering wheel was also to the left.

I took the truck to a local shop for an alignment, when I got it back it still pulled to the left. I went back to the shop and they told me nothing was wrong and there is nothing they can do to fix the problem.

He told me the problem was the oversized wheels and tires and I should put the factory wheels back on. Do you think it is the wheels, the new tires or something else?

A. I suspect the problem is the tires, not that they are oversized but one of the tires is defective. The condition is known as tire conicity.

The tire when it was built has a cone shape and causes tire pull. The easy way to test for this problem is swap the front tires left to right, if now the car pulls to the right it is the right front tire that is defective. You could also rotate the tires front to rear and the pulling will most likely be gone.

In the case of your Jeep, that may be the best solution. The problem with all-wheel-drive and four-wheel-drive trucks is they perform best when all four tires are the same size. Although you can get a new tire for the tire causing the pulling, installing one new tire on your Jeep with three worn tires is not recommended and can damage the transfer case.

John Paul is senior manager of public affairs for AAA Northeast. A certified mechanic, Paul tests dozens of new cars each year and also hosts a radio show on AM 950 wrolradio.com

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John Paul

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