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Wheel Alignment Problems? Get Them Fixed, Now!

Monday, November 19, 2018

Problems with wheel alignment can be diagnosed if you feel your car behaving strangely on the road. If you feel the vehicle always wanting to turn a particular way, there could be problems. If your car feels like it is wobbling, particularly at speed, there could be issues with wheel alignment.

Wheel alignment problems can also cause difficulty steering, with excess feedback to the steering wheel or actual difficulty turning the car. The important thing to realise about problems with wheel alignment is that they can quickly develop into problems with suspension, fuel-efficiency and safety due to the integral nature of tyres to all of those vehicular systems.

Three Variables to Consider: Toe, Camber and Caster

Toe

Toe is the direction of the wheel, easiest to see on tyres with strict linear thread. It is described in a similar way to human footing, and being pigeon-toed or duck-toed will affect your performance.

Camber

Camber is the vertical lean of a tyre. On racing style cars, the rear wheels are often cambered with the outside of the wheel being further away from the car at the road than at the top of the wheel. This gives the wheel extra grip when turning.

Caster

Caster is a difficult thing to measure with your eyes but it is related to the position of the steering forks on the wheel. Suffice to say, there are two contact points for the wheel and the lower one should be forward of the upper one.

Correct Wheel Alignment

Every car is going to need individualised wheel alignment. It is necessary to align multiple wheels at once, either 2 or 4 so that they are balanced. It is no use having a camber on the left-hand side of the car that is not balanced by the camber of the right-hand side. Today, these measurements and calculations can be done via computers, and long-term monitoring can be employed to detect changes over time with your car.

Safety Issues

Having uneven contact with the ground can cause your car to move in directions other than the one it is pointed towards. This could cause issues for you or the community. Having maligned wheels can also lead to one or other of your wheels failing under high stress which could be disastrous.

Tyre Problems

Tyres are designed to sit on the road in a specific manner. There is strict concern regarding the spacing and depth of tread, which has a direct influence on how tyres perform. Unevenly contacting tyres will wear in an uneven manner, meaning one tyre might require replacing before the rest. This will then cascade and cause issues with your other tyres as they will be marginally different sizes!

Another consequence of maligned tyres is that the car might have to work harder to overcome the extra drag of your tyres working against each other. This will cost you money in lost fuel efficiency.

Drury Tires, Your Problem Solvers

Call us today on 09 294 8139 or contact us online with your questions. We have been in the industry a long time and provide the best service in South Auckland.