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Old 03-10-2009, 05:04 PM   #1
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Cool My Rear End Wiggles

No, not that. I'm new to Focuses but I'm on boards for the other Fords I own. I have a 2004 SE wagon that I got used. It now has 60,000 miles on it. I've noticed that when I go quickly around bends, and especially on-ramps and off-ramps, that the rear of the car wiggles back and forth while I'm in the turn. Only when I'm going faster, not at a speed that plasters your head to the window, but it's irritating. I have four snow tires on now but it did it with the regular tires too. Tires are inflated to 35 psi and checked regularly and look to be wearing evenly. Could it be the alignment or do they all do this?
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Old 03-10-2009, 05:15 PM   #2
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Mine has started doing it as well i don't know what it is... Even going straight the on icy road the back end wiggles and its a bit unerving i assumed it was just because i have almost bald tires on the rear... My dad has a 2002 wagon and his does the same thing but he has almost bald tires all around so we'd assumed it was a tire thing... Same with tire pressures we monitor and keep them all at 32psi
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Old 03-10-2009, 05:58 PM   #3
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Fofo's are light in the rear. If you have even the slightest baldness on your tire you're going to feel that sway. I had wrecked my car just outside of Cambridge coming across I-70 when I used to live in Pitt. I thought I had enough tread on the tires but apparently I didn't since my rear end decided to have a mind of it's own and kick out from behind me going 50mph in the rain.
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Old 03-10-2009, 06:01 PM   #4
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that makes sense.......I just spun my car last night. me and the fofo are ok, but it just slipped out from behind me....

but I'd have to say it may be the alignment.

and to FF.
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Old 03-10-2009, 06:34 PM   #5
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I had a very similar problem with the rear end feeling as if it's "slipping'' over bumps or dips. The problem was the lower forward rear control arms. These are about 12" long and almost perfectly straight. Both bushings were completely shot on mine causing the rear end to wiggle. After replacement, the rear end feels like new. No slipping or uneasiness.
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Old 03-10-2009, 07:45 PM   #6
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The design of the focus suspension allows for some dynamic toe change when the suspension is compressed, this is why the rear end can feel twitchy when compressed by a bump, while it is loaded during a turn. If the forward trailing arm bushings are shot, they can lead to some "wiggle" when loaded.

It is an important lesson learned that, lifting off of the throttle abrubtly while in mid turn, will lead to throttle off oversteer. This abrubt lift off will shift the weight to the front wheels, increaing the amount grip the front tires have. This will often be cause for a spin, and has occurred to me once on the street, after expierencing that I use it to my advantage during autox. Condition of the rear tires won't matter much when this occurs.
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Old 03-11-2009, 08:25 AM   #7
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Thanks. I will get a four-wheel alignment and see if it helps.
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Old 03-11-2009, 07:52 PM   #8
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I don't think an alignment will be the solution to your problem.

If you can, set the parking brake firmly and jack the rear of the car up, support on jackstands. Now check each rear wheel for play. You'll want to twist the wheel as is described for checking for issues with a wheel bearing. There should not be any play in the wheel. Also, make sure there is no play in the rear sway bar.
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Old 03-12-2009, 01:25 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wrc_fan View Post
It is an important lesson learned that, lifting off of the throttle abrubtly while in mid turn, will lead to throttle off oversteer. This abrubt lift off will shift the weight to the front wheels, increaing the amount grip the front tires have. This will often be cause for a spin, and has occurred to me once on the street, after expierencing that I use it to my advantage during autox. Condition of the rear tires won't matter much when this occurs.
I discovered the lift off oversteer a few weeks ago and my bumper clipped the front end of a 2003 nissan maxima... It gives me an excuse to put on a SVT bumper skin but unfortunately my insurance company loves me now...


I'll check into my bushings i think that could potentially be cause... i had an alignment a couple weeks ago and i would've thought they'd have noticed and told me if they were going
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Old 03-12-2009, 01:58 AM   #10
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i "had" the same problem. it got worse when i lowered it! last winter my backend would slide out a whole foot every time i hit an ice patch at any speed! i got a camber set and adjustable rear toe arms and took it for a full alignment. problem solved. now it goes strait as an arrow p.s. u don't need the camber set unless u lower it.
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