When the rubber meets the road means when the work gets done. The tires do the work of moving your car forward. When your wheels are not correctly aligned, that work can put a lot of strain on the parts of the suspension system of your vehicle. Wheels can become unaligned for multiple reasons. Parts wearing out over the years, collisions with curbs or potholes, and just average wear and tear. Wheel alignments are not a regularly scheduled maintenance of your car. The way to tell if you need a wheel alignment is to find a flat level stretch of road, I know in Illinois it can be hard, and when there is little to no traffic on the road let your steering wheel go. There are several ways to tell if you need a wheel alignment.
Uneven tire wear – If you notice that one side or another of your tire is wearing down faster than the other, odds are your wheels are out of alignment.
Wheel wobble – If the steering wheel shakes while you are driving, then odds are you have a wheel that is shaking and that could be out of alignment.
Steering wheel off center. If you drive and your steering wheel is not properly aligned with how your wheels are facing, your probably need a wheel alignment (your steering wheel can become misaligned as a result of oversteering as well)
The car pulls to one side – This is where you have the wheel straight, but your car seems to drift to the left or right while driving.
Wheel Alignment Barrington
When you get a wheel alignment, there is more than if the wheel is angled left or right that is checked. Wheels can become unaligned vertically as well; this can cause uneven wear and reduced performance while driving. Proper wheel alignment extends the life of your tires, and it improves the handling of your car. Everyday driving on smooth flat roads does not contribute a huge amount to how your wheels become unaligned, but lots of little things can. Wheels can become unaligned the same day you get an alignment. If you bump a curb, hit a pothole, and other factors can cause an instant change in alignment. Time and wear are the other big factor. 12-18 months of driving can slowly wear out the parts of your car and cause them to become unaligned. The parts from the steering wheel to the wheels themselves can cause wheels to become unaligned, and a little wear on all those parts can make a huge alignment problem.
One of the biggest reasons to get a wheel alignment is to save the wear on your tires. When your wheels are not aligned properly, your tires are not pressing square against the road. This means that one side of your tire is being worn faster than the other side. This can cause a wear pattern in your tire that can add to how your car drifts when your steering wheel is released. This also means that your tire might go bad because of the worn part becoming unsafe to drive on, while the rest of the tire is still good. Our technicians can help you determine if your tires are still good when you bring your car in for a checkup.
Tire Rotation Barrington
Another part of making sure that your car can stay on the road is tire rotations. Even with balance and alignment, your tires can wear unevenly. This can cause your car to pull to one side under the best conditions. By rotating your tires, you can extend the life of them by evenly distributing the wear on all your tires. Tires should be rotated every six months or 6,000 to 8,000 miles.
Tire Balance Barrington
There is no perfect process to create tires. Imperfections in the process and even wear and buildup on the rims can cause your tires not to spin properly. This causes the wheels to wobble at high speeds as an imbalance in your tires cause them to wobble. Our automotive shop is equipped with a machine that will allow us to balance your tire so that you have a smoother ride at high speeds that doesn’t put extra strain on your car.
Auto Shop Barrington
Be sure to watch out for the signals that your wheels are going out of alignment. Be sure to pay attention to how the road is as well. Most roads are not level and angle slightly to the outside to let rainwater drain. Bumpy roads can also make you think your wheels are out of alignment, but you should trust the experts. At Auto Advantage our expert mechanics will diagnose any problem with your vehicle, and we’ll let you know what needs to be done to keep you safe. So stop by today and let us help you stay on the road.