A Comprehensive Guide on a Wheel Alignment: Signs and Symptoms | Do You Need a Wheel Alignment? How to Know for Sure
In this blog post, we’ll cover the signs of a misalignment, how to check for misalignment, and when to get your car’s alignment checked. Plus, we’ll explore the causes of your car misalignment, the average cost of a wheel alignment, and tips on how to maintain your vehicle for optimal performance.
A car’s wheel alignment is the process of adjusting the angles of the wheels to ensure that they are perpendicular to the ground and parallel to each other. A proper wheel alignment is crucial for several reasons, including:
Signs that your car needs a wheel alignment
The following are the signs that your car needs an alignment:
Uneven tire wear: Misaligned wheels can cause one tire to wear out faster than the others. Check your tires for uneven wear patterns, such as bald spots, feathering of the edges and cupping.
Car pulling to one side: If your car pulls to one side while driving, it may be a sign of misaligned wheels. This can also be caused by low tire pressure, worn suspension components, or a damaged tire.
Steering wheel off-center: If your steering wheel is not centered while driving straight, it could be a sign of misaligned wheels. This can also be caused by worn steering components or a bent suspension component.
Car vibration: If you feel a vibration or shaking in the steering wheel or car body while driving, it may be a sign of misaligned wheels. This can also be caused by worn suspension components or a damaged tyre.
Noisy tyres: Misaligned wheels can cause your tires to make a humming or squealing noise while driving. This can also be caused by worn tyres or a damaged wheel bearing.
How to check if your car needs a wheel alignment
You can check for misaligned wheels with the following steps:
Visual inspection of tire wear: Check your tires for any signs of uneven wear, such as bald spots or feathering. If you notice any uneven wear, it may be a sign of misaligned wheels.
Check steering wheel centering: While driving straight, check if your steering wheel is centered. If it is off-center, it could be a sign of misaligned wheels.
Test drive the car: Take your car for a test drive on a straight, flat road. If your car pulls to one side, it may be a sign of misaligned wheels.
When to get your car’s alignment checked
It is recommended to get your car’s alignment checked every 10,000km’s or once a year, whichever comes first. You should also get your alignment checked if you notice any signs of misaligned wheels, such as uneven tyre wear or car pulling to one side.
Causes of car misalignment
The following are the common causes of car misalignment:
Potholes and bumps on the road: Hitting potholes and bumps on the road can cause misalignment in your car’s wheels.
Hitting gutters or other objects: Hitting gutters or other objects can also cause misalignment in your car’s wheels.
Wear and tear on suspension and steering components: Over time, suspension and steering components can wear out and cause misalignment in your car’s wheels.
1. How much does a car alignment cost?
The cost of a car alignment can vary depending on several factors, such as the type of vehicle, the location, and the extent of the alignment needed. On average, a car alignment can cost between $75.
Proper car alignment is crucial for optimal car performance, safety, and tyre wear. Knowing the signs of your car’s misalignment, how to check for misalignment, and when to get your car’s alignment checked can help you maintain your vehicle and avoid costly repairs. Regular car maintenance, including alignment checks, can also improve gas mileage and prolong the life of your tyres.