Maintaining proper wheel alignment on your vehicle is a vital part of car servicing.
Incorrectly aligned wheels can have a significant impact on the overall safety and efficiency of your car as well as increase the wear on your tyres, steering, suspension and brakes.
What you Need to Know about Wheel Alignment
The first thing to bear in mind is that the term “wheel alignment” is something of a misnomer – the term refers as much to the alignment of the suspension in relation to the rest of the vehicle as to the alignment of the wheels in relation to each other.
Suffice to say that misalignment of all these parts can have a severe effect on the performance of your vehicle.
There are three main causes of wheel misalignment. These are:
a) sudden jarring or impact damage caused by hitting something, such as a kerb or pothole
b) worn parts caused by wear and tear over time
c) modifications carried out to the height of the vehicle when the suspension has not been adapted to the change in height.
To check whether the wheels of your vehicle are misaligned, look out for the following symptoms:
– The vehicle pulling to the left or right when driving in a straight line
– Abnormal or uneven tyre wear, such as excessive wear on one side of the tyre.
– Steering wheel vibration
– The steering wheel not returning to centre easily after a turn
– A squealing noise emanating from the tyres
There are a number of reasons why it makes sense to make sure your wheels are correctly aligned:
– Improved handling
– Improved tyre wear. Correct alignment makes sure that your vehicle is making contact with the road at the correct angle
– Improved fuel efficiency. Incorrectly aligned wheels increase the rolling resistance of the vehicle, thereby negatively impacting fuel consumption.
– Improved comfort when driving
– Safer driving due to improved handling
– Reduced environmental impact due to the reduced rolling resistance and subsequent fuel savings
It is relatively easy to check out the symptoms of misalignment, but the adjustments are best carried out by trained tyre professionals who have the correct equipment.
So, if you’re unsure about whether your wheels are correctly aligned, please drop into your nearest Tayaria outlet, where one of our trained tyre and wheel experts will be able to assist.