by: Auto Giant
Wheel alignments are an integral part of making sure your vehicle is safe on the road. Everyday driving, turning, reversing and parking all put stress on the wheels of your car. Even the amount of people you have in your car on a regular basis can affect your wheel alignment. It is just basic wear and tear overtime. Eventually, your wheels come out of alignment, which can be felt in the way the car drives.
It is not uncommon for a car to need a wheel alignment as people drive almost everywhere these days. Whether it is to the shop down the road or down the coast for a holiday. The most important thing to consider is when your car needs a wheel alignment. This is usually every 6 months to maintain the optimum performance of your vehicle. Wheel alignments increase fuel economy, reduce stress on your car and reduce prematurely wearing out your tyres.
There are many elements to a wheel alignment and professionals need training in the technology to perform a wheel alignment correctly. However, some elements are fairly easy to understand so you can spot the signs on your own vehicle. These include the camber, caster and toe, which work in measurements of the degrees of an angle with the optimum degree being 0.
Camber can be one of the easiest signs to spot when your car needs a wheel alignment. If you look at your car head on your tyres usually look straight. If they are tilted to either side however they need to be realigned. If the top of your wheel is tilted outwards from the body of your car it is a positive camber, which is a positive angle to 0. The opposite can happen as well where the wheel tilts in. This is a negative camber, which is a negative angle to 0.
Caster is the next sign that your car needs a wheel alignment. When you look at your car from the side the wheel should be centered and holding the weight of your vehicle in a straight line. If your wheel is too far forward and seems closer to the front of your vehicle this is called a negative caster. The opposite is a positive caster, which happens if the wheel leans closer to the rear of your car.
Toe is the final sign that is fairly easy to spot when your car needs a wheel alignment. When you turn your steering wheel your tyres move from side to side. When your wheels are aimed straight that is how they should be. A positive toe is when your wheel is turned inwards when it is supposed to be straight and a negative toe is where the wheel is turned outwards.
So, as you can see wheel alignments are important for the safety of your car, yourself and your family. It is easy to detect the signs that you car needs a wheel alignment if you know what you are looking for, however, prevention is better than cure. Getting a wheel alignment every 6 months is the best way you can protect yourself and your family while on the road. We offer wheel alignments at our Brendale mechanics workshop. Just call us on 07 3881 2900 to book your car in.