Having dealt with an off-center steering wheel in my Ford F150, I’m familiar with the frustration it brings. After experimenting with various approaches, I’ve found several solutions that I’m excited to share in this article.

So, if you want to learn how to adjust your steering wheel yourself and better understand why this happened, keep on reading.

Why Is My Ford F150 Steering Wheel Off Center?

If your F150’s steering wheel is off, it could be because the wheels aren’t lined up right, the suspension parts are worn out, the tires are wearing unevenly, or the tire pressure is off. To fix it, adjust the wheel and make sure the tires are straight. Do full maintenance on the tire as well.

Before I tell you about the F150 steering wheel adjustment method, you need to understand why it all happened in the first place so you know what to watch out for. 

So let’s get talking about the reasons first, shall we?

Reasons why f150 steering wheel not straight

1. Wheels Not Aligned Properly

Alignment is a precise procedure that ensures the wheels are properly positioned for optimal handling and tire wear.

When performed incorrectly, like by using outdated specifications or inaccurate equipment, the angles of the wheels can deviate from the manufacturer’s intended settings.

This deviation gradually shifts the steering wheel off-center as the truck is driven, causing it to veer to one side.

Hitting things on the road or running into potholes can mess up your truck’s steering and suspension.

These impacts can throw the actual wheels out of line, affecting how they point and lean, which ends up making the steering wheel slowly turn off to the side.

2. Faulty Suspension System

The F150’s suspension system is a complex network of parts that work together to provide stability and smooth handling.

When components like control arms, tie rods, or ball joints wear out or sustain impacts, it disrupts the cohesive fit impacting the geometry of the suspension.

This messes with the alignment angles, such as the toe and camber. When these angles change, the steering wheel drifts to one side.

3. Uneven Tire Wear

Tires affect alignment. Sometimes, one side of the tire wears out faster than the other.

This happens when the toe or camber angles are off because of what I mentioned earlier, making the vehicle pull to a side.

As the tires wear differently, the steering wheel ends up going even further off-center to counter the tire pull.

4. Tire Pressure Imbalance

Having the right tire pressure is important to make sure they touch the road evenly.

If the pressure is way off, the tire doesn’t sit properly on the wheel. This makes the tire tilt a bit, which then changes how the wheels are lined up.

The steering system tries to fix this by making the car go towards the side with less pressure, which makes the steering wheel not be in the middle anymore.

How To Align The F150 Steering Wheel That’s Not Straight?

Now, I’ll tell you the best way to set the steering wheel straight and add in everything you can do to make sure it stays that way.

1. Do Manual Steering Wheel Alignment

If you already got your adjustment done from a mechanic, you can go back and ask them to do it properly.

You can also go the manual route to recenter the wheel. It’s easy to do and would’ve been better to try before handing the truck off to a mechanic.

  • Find the drag link steering setup, which includes drag arms, tie rods, and adjusting sleeves – it’s near the steering box.
  • Double-check if your steering wheel is off-center compared to the direction of your wheels.
  • Locate the tie rod adjusting sleeve with tick marks for reference.
  • Remember which way to turn it based on your steering wheel’s position.
  • Park your truck and make sure the steering wheel is straight.
  • Start with small quarter-turn adjustments on the tie rod adjusting sleeve.
  • Take it for a short test drive after each adjustment to feel the difference.
  • Keep making these small adjustments until your steering wheel aligns with your wheels.

Remember, even tiny turns can have a big impact on how your steering feels, so go easy.

2. Align The Tires

Even if you’ve adjusted everything, you have to make sure your tires are in tip-top shape to ensure you don’t end up with a loose steering not being in the position it’s supposed to be.

  • Get four vinyl tiles and grease them.
  • Use the tiles as “swivels” under your tires.
  • Measure front wheel distance and place swivels.
  • Drive onto swivels with straight steering.
  • Use jack stands and tie a line between them.
  • Make sure wheel hubs are equal distance from the line.
  • Measure the front wheel edges to the line for the toe.
  • Compare it with factory specs.
  • Loosen tie rod nut.
  • Adjust the toe by turning the tie-rod.
  • Tighten the nut on the tie-rod when done.
Note: You can find detailed instructions to align F150 tires on this Ford Trucks forum article – this is just a gist of the process.

3. Do Tire Maintenance

Once you’re done with all that, remember to do some proper maintenance on your tires as well. Fix the pressure by using a pressure gauge and replace anything that’s worn.

4. Fix The Suspension System

If you still end up with a steering wheel that isn’t perfectly straight despite fixing the issues, you’ll have to look even deeper. The suspension system might be the reason.

However, taking care of it needs almost as much work as repairing the transmission or the EVAC system.

You’ll need to look up dedicated guides on repairing it, check in with your truck manual, or get a mechanic to look into it.

Final Thoughts

Keeping your F150’s steering straight and properly aligned is going to be easy peasy from now on. Stay on top of tire maintenance and if you feel any pulling or shaking, it’s probably a good idea to check everything all over again.

That’s all for this post, Good luck with getting your wheel back in line.

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