The next time you’re driving slowly down a road with no other traffic lift your hands off of the steering wheel. Does your car pull to the left or the right? When you’re home look at your tires, is there more wear on the outside edge? Have you noticed that your steering wheel isn’t centered when your wheels are straight?
If your car seems to pull to the left or right you probably need an alignment.
If any of these is true you probably need an alignment. You may have hit a pothole or maybe a curb and messed up the delicately calibrated parts of your car’s suspension.
Even if you don’t notice these warning signs it still may be time for an alignment. Check your owner’s manual to see how often the manufacturer recommends one.
A good alignment can bring your car’s suspension into its proper configuration. Each component is positioned and adjusted so that the wheels are in alignment with each other. Your mechanic will adjust the various suspension angles, known as toe, thrust, camber and caster as well as make sure the steering wheel is centered.
A proper tier alignment will reduce uneven wear on your tires, which shortens their lives, so it’s a good idea economically to monitor your car’s alignment. You’ll also get better gas mileage because properly aligned tires decrease resistance.
The type of alignment you need depends on the suspension of your car. All-wheel drive cars or front-wheel drive cars that have independent or adjustable rear suspension will get a four-wheel alignment. Both axles of these automobiles need to be correctly aligned so that the wheels are basically a proper rectangle and even with the ground.
Other cars may need a front-end alignment which aligns only the front axle components. There’s also a thrust-angle alignment which means the angle that your car’s rear wheels point relative to the car’s center so the rear wheels and axle are parallel with the front axle and perpendicular to the center line of your car. Got that? Yeah, a lot goes into keeping your car ship shape.
Routine maintenance will keep your car going longer and that’s our goal, isn’t it? But if your car is wobbling down the road, trying to drive in circles, call or come in to Sallas Auto Repair. We can align your cars, save your tires, and put you back on the road happy.