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Discussion Starter #1
I've tested 10 different MDX CPO's over the last year or so and at least 4 of them pulled to the right. Very apparent with all of them.

  1. How can dealers claim these are CPO ready?
  2. Why do so many MDx's have alignment issues (assuming they are alignment issues)?
I don't believe these are simply coincidences (different vehicles/different dealers/different points in time) but it really has me questioning Gen 3 MDX's in general.
 

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That’s very strange. The only 3rd gen that I’ve driven, the one I have, doesn’t do that. But my previous 2016 RDX pulled to the left with 2 different brands of tires and 2 alignments. Dealer couldn’t figure it out.
 

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I found this CPO 182 points Inspection Checklist online. I am not sure if this is current or outdated, but unfortunately, alignment is not on the list.
 

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I've tested 10 different MDX CPO's over the last year or so and at least 4 of them pulled to the right. Very apparent with all of them.

  1. How can dealers claim these are CPO ready?
  2. Why do so many MDx's have alignment issues (assuming they are alignment issues)?
I don't believe these are simply coincidences (different vehicles/different dealers/different points in time) but it really has me questioning Gen 3 MDX's in general.
I’ve had a 14 and 17. no pulling to the right or left.
 

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In my northern/urban driving I need to redo alignment every year with all the freeze-induced potholes. If CPO doesn't do it on the checklist then it would not surprise me that so many need it done.

Also, my wall street friends say in certain circles, people do not want to be seen in used vehicles, which may be why so many CPO's throughout the northeast are from NYC, and its many potholes.

Couple those together and it does not surprise me about the need for alignments.

Alignment and oil overfill check are the first things I'm doing when my CPO Hybrid arrives this week.
 

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I purchased my 19 MDX Adv brand new off the transport. I added the gloss black Berlina rims at the dealership. Noticed a balance issue in the passenger rear tire and the MDX ride didn't feel right at hwy speeds. Didn't trust the dealership and went to Discount Tires for a road force balance (fixed the rear tire issue) and Firestone for an alignment. The MDX came from the factory with half of the alignment points in the yellow or red. Zero issues since alignment.

I usually get lifetime alignment from Firestone on my previous Acura's and needed to use it around once a year, with any suspension work, or with new tires (keep my cars +10 yrs).
 

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Discussion Starter #8
In my northern/urban driving I need to redo alignment every year with all the freeze-induced potholes. If CPO doesn't do it on the checklist then it would not surprise me that so many need it done.

Also, my wall street friends say in certain circles, people do not want to be seen in used vehicles, which may be why so many CPO's throughout the northeast are from NYC, and its many potholes.

Couple those together and it does not surprise me about the need for alignments.

Alignment and oil overfill check are the first things I'm doing when my CPO Hybrid arrives this week.
I live in California. No potholes here like out East. I grew up in the midwst and know potholes well, but never had to perform new annual alignments unless you really hit something. This suggests to me at least, the MDX is "sensative" to road conditions. Maybe this is why the new 22's have a new front end ?
 

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Discussion Starter #9
I purchased my 19 MDX Adv brand new off the transport. I added the gloss black Berlina rims at the dealership. Noticed a balance issue in the passenger rear tire and the MDX ride didn't feel right at hwy speeds. Didn't trust the dealership and went to Discount Tires for a road force balance (fixed the rear tire issue) and Firestone for an alignment. The MDX came from the factory with half of the alignment points in the yellow or red. Zero issues since alignment.

I usually get lifetime alignment from Firestone on my previous Acura's and needed to use it around once a year, with any suspension work, or with new tires (keep my cars +10 yrs).
This suggests Acura has poor quality control before vehicles hit the stealership. Interesting.
 

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I underdstand, but I don't see the relevance.
It's relevant since it's a data point in addition to the ones you indicated.

I purchased my 2014 MDX new in July 2013, it now has around 72K miles on it, have never had an alignment done to it, and it's just fine - drives straight and true. It has Michelin Premier LTX tires on it.

With the factory Continentals on it it 'seemed' to tend to veer in a direction - to the right IIRC. Tire rotation didn't affect this. I say 'seemed' because it was very slight and not an issue. When I put the Michelins on there's not even a slight tendency in either direction.

In short, there's has been no alignment issues with mine and the tires seem to have some influence on the feel in this area. Many used vehicles have lower quality tires on them since dealers often replace the tires with new albeit less expensive tires.

Unless a steering component was severely damaged, enough to bend the robust metal, or damage a rubber bushing, or unless steering components are replaced, the alignment shouldn't change. There's no need to get a vehicle re-aligned on a regular basis. Of course, it's always possible the alignment wasn't set properly to begin with - or that someone had it re-aligned by someone who didn't know what they were doing and actually set it off.

On your 4/10 example of apparent misalignments, maybe they're due to someone messing with the alignment as I stated above - someone who did more harm than good - or maybe it's just an artifact of the tires that are on the vehicles.
 

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I've done annual alignments on my Accord and Odyssey. Some times I tried to stretch it to two years and end up paying for premature wear on tires. I drive 20k/yr and that's gennerally the recommended alignment duration on those anyways.

My Acura RSX has very low miles but I align it every 20k as a habit. The MDX CPO (being shipped) has 15k, I may road test and if it isnt pulling may wait until 20k for alignment to be easier to remember for the future.
 

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I had an mdx tech awd 2014 and now a 2020 tech awd. Drove last to 100k. No alignment issues. In east coast with potholes. Replaces tires always with Michelin’s oems. A simple alignment is cheap to the dealer. Maybe it is your road you are test driving on which is skewing your data.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Well, I have a 2020 Tech and it seems to drive straight, so hoping my luck is consistent with some of you that have posted in this thread. To me, 4/10 seemed more than a coincidence, that's all.
 

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I've had my 2020 Tech for 4 months (less than 2K miles) and I've had to go to the dealership 3x already (waiting to schedule 4th visit) for alignment issues. I have to turn my steering wheel to the left to go straight. This is not my first Acura. I'm being told that this is an "easy" fix and not a safety issue. If this is an "easy" fix, why does it keep getting misaligned? And for the safety issue - no comment on my end :( Has anyone else experienced this or have any suggestions on what I can do?
 

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Discussion Starter #17 (Edited)
I've had my 2020 Tech for 4 months (less than 2K miles) and I've had to go to the dealership 3x already (waiting to schedule 4th visit) for alignment issues. I have to turn my steering wheel to the left to go straight. This is not my first Acura. I'm being told that this is an "easy" fix and not a safety issue. If this is an "easy" fix, why does it keep getting misaligned? And for the safety issue - no comment on my end :( Has anyone else experienced this or have any suggestions on what I can do?
I just put new tires on my 2020 Tech - Firestone/Tirerack. It drove straight as an arrow with OEM tires, now it pulls to the right so I have an apt for an alignment on Monday. When I picked it up, the right tire was all dirty (as in real dirt) with scuff marks that looked like curb scuffs or similar. It didn't even look like a new tire.
 

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My old 17 Tech AWD had 45k miles on it when I traded it in on my current 20 AWD and the original tires were good for another 5-10k miles (rotated every 7500 miles). Never had any alignment issues. Prior to that had an 11 Pilot AWD that had 70k miles on it and never required an alignment. I‘ve had every type of Honda and Acura vehicle since 81 except an NSX (yes, I’m old) and have never aligned any of them. No pulling or uneven wear issues.
Sorry, but unless you drive in are area filled with potholes, I’m not really sure why everyone thinks they need an alignment every year to two.
I had one done on my 15 BMW 235i when I bought it used in 17 but only because I heard they needed it every couple of years, Now 4 years later, it still doesn’t need one and I’m still on the original tires.
Sorry, but I think alignments are pushed on the consumer. Do some vehicles need them? Yeah, perhaps, but most do not and can go 70k or more miles without it.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
If you search the information superhighway, you'll find the topic of alignment about as mixed as this thread. I do know that after talking to Tirerack, they strongly suggest it after any new tire change for what it's worth. But like others have mentioned, I can't think of any brand vehicle that I've owned, across all brands ever needed an alignment. I have a new MDX with 500 miles that now needs it. Hey, didn't I start this thread? hmmmm. If it doesn't solve the problem, I'll be done with Acura for good. No time for this ****.
 

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In northern states with tons of freeze/thaw potholes, I've seen most dealers recommend alignment every 15000 miles or so. It may be a bit more than needed, but when I've tried to stretch to 25000 miles I quickly end up with unwarrantied uneven tire wear that costs a lot more money.

From my few vacation drives in the south, I almost never see a pothole so could easily see cars going 50000+ miles without an alignment in warmer climates.

From my experience, alignment immediately fixes pulling unless the tire has already worn unevenly (or if the dealer did it improperly, or something is wrong with bearings/suspension/etc). If the car pulls after an alignment, check treadwear to ensure it is even, and if they are all good then bring it back to the dealer or try another place to align it.

If the treadwear is worn unevenly, you can just drive it for a while and it may eventually straighten out, and if it doesn't you probably need new ties. Uneven tires sometimes screw up alignment machines, so you should realign immediately after replacing unevenly-worn tires.
 
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