Each year, thousands of tyres are replaced before they should be and this is nearly always down to wheels not being aligned correctly. The misalignment results in unnecessary tyre wear and tear and can cost you a fortune in replacements. Correct wheel alignment will also improve vehicle safety and performance. Why not give us a call today?
• Improved safety
• Improved handling
• Improved performance
• Extends the life of your tyres
• Adheres to manufacturers’ warranties
• Increases fuel economy
Wheel alignment involves checking the direction and angle of the wheels to ensure they remain parallel to one another. Adjustments can then be made to the tie rods and control arms to correct alignment. This has several benefits but the easiest to remember is that a-lign-ment helps you to drive in a straight “line” since vehicles with misaligned wheels can pull or drift to one side.
Wheels will generally become misaligned over time due largely to road conditions. Hitting a pothole, a curb or even a speed bump are all common causes of alignment problems which can lead to uneven tyre wear, the car pulling to the left or right, and uneven braking, so it’s recommended that you have your alignment checked every year. Doing so could save you money in the long run as you’ll be changing your tyres less frequently and spending less on fuel due to the reduced rolling resistance of the correctly aligned tyres.
Wheels can be adjusted using specialist alignment equipment which measures either just the front wheels (2-wheel alignment, also known as tracking), or all four in relation to one another (4-wheel alignment). The position and orientation of your wheels are compared against our vehicle manufacturer data, ensuring your vehicle is set up perfectly for you to drive.
Balancing and alignment are in fact two very different practices and whereas balancing addresses the distribution of weight around the wheel, alignment looks at the position of the wheels in relation to the road and each other. It’s easy to confuse the two, so here’s a closer look at each one and the benefits this can bring to you and your car.
Wheel balancing ensures that weight is distributed equally around the wheel and that the tyre rotates evenly. This involves adding small balancing weights to the rim which counter weight inconsistencies. If you imagine a set of balancing scales, when you add a heavy weight to one side the scales will tip. If you then add a number of smaller, less heavy items to the other side, the scales will gradually begin to tilt the more you add until finally, when you have added enough smaller weights, the scales will once again level out. Add too many weights and the scales will tip the other way. Although this is a simpler example, wheel balancing works in the same way and if an imbalance towards one side of the wheel is identified, wheel weights are added to the opposite side to even out the distribution of weight.
It’s important to address wheels that are not correctly balanced to ensure you receive the best ride comfort. Incorrectly balanced wheels produce a vibration that is felt through the steering wheel when travelling above a certain speed that can cause considerable discomfort over time. What’s more, balance issues can cause premature wearing of your tyres, suspension and steering components.
The tyre and wheel assembly are mounted on the machine which then spins the wheel to calculate even the slightest variance in weight across the wheel. The balancing machine then highlights the exact position where a counter weight should be applied and which size of weights to use to correctly balance the wheel.