Thankfully, a lot of drivers today know how important wheel alignment is for their vehicles. Not only does it prolong tire life, but a proper check provides a safe and balanced ride as well as improved mileage. But what happens if we neglect it?
Well, sad to say that there are still those who take their tires for granted until wear out. These types of drivers or car owners are in potential danger of hurting themselves and those around them. Read up to know how to spot and fix the misaligned wheels.
The simple symptoms
1. Uneven tire wear and tear
A misaligned wheel may have a wider or slimmer contact patch to the pavement compared to the other tires – be it correctly adjusted or not – resulting into uneven tire wear and tear. If left as is, it may cause vibrations on the steering wheel and eventually the whole vehicle.
2. Lower fuel economy
Uneven tire contact to the ground can also cause flat spots which will create drag instead of letting the wheel roll freely. This in effect will use more fuel to get the tire in motion and lower your vehicle’s mileage.
3. Harder time behind the steering wheel
Do you notice something wrong with your car’s handling? Aside from the vibrations, the drag produced by the problematic tire(s) will pull the car to its side because of its uneven surface and power delivery to the ground.
The easy fix
1. Be attentive while driving
Misalignment can happen from the impact of running over potholes or curbs can cause damage to your car’s tires, as well as its suspension and steering system. Be attentive, drive within the speed limit, and put enough space between you and the vehicle ahead so you can have time to see the road in front and react.
2. Observe the wheels
Constant inspection of the tires could help you spot if your wheels are not aligned. Like what we said earlier, any uneven wear can be an indication that either your wheels aren't straight or there's something else that's wrong with the vehicle. When this happens, it would be a good option to drop by your local wheel store or mechanic.
3. Have your wheels aligned and balanced
To get the optimal performance out of your car, the tires, suspension, and steering will all need to be measured and adjusted back to the recommended manufacturer settings every now and then. It is suggested that this should be done at least annually or every time you bring your car in for periodic maintenance service (PMS).
Making sure that your vehicle’s wheels are aligned will not just save you thousands of pesos worth of repairs, but also keep you and your passengers safe. Regularly check your tire’s health and when you see uneven wear, don’t hesitate to bring it in.