The importance of wheel alignment
In order to keep your vehicle moving in the same direction and keep you safe on the road, it’s important to get your wheel alignment checked every 10,000km or twice a year, whichever comes first.
A wheel alignment service involves manually adjusting the suspension of your vehicle to ensure each component in your system is in the correct position for optimal performance.
Each time your car receives a wheel alignment service by a qualified mechanic, you help to ensure that the wheels and axles of your vehicle are squared as set out by your car manufacturer. In addition to helping your car move in the correct direction, getting regular wheel repair and alignment services improves the overall handling of your vehicle and helps increase the lifespan of your tyres.
Signs your car needs a wheel alignment service
General wear and tear and simple driving mistakes like mounting the kerb or hitting a pothole can cause your wheels to become misaligned. To minimise the damage of general driving on your vehicle you should maintain the air pressure in your tyres, avoid driving through potholes and remove any heavy items from your car.
Even if you have gotten a checkup recently or you have taken as many steps as possible to prevent damage to your suspension, it is important to be aware of the signs your car may give off if it is in need of a wheel alignment service, such as:
Vehicle pulls left or right
If you can feel your vehicle pulling to the left or right whilst driving on a straight road, it’s very likely that your car is in need of a wheel alignment service. The wheels of your vehicle should be easy to control and you should not feel any resistance when trying to keep your car driving straight. If you do, it’s best to get your wheels checked over by a qualified mechanic.
Crooked and/or vibrating steering wheel
Another important sign that your car is due for a wheel alignment service is a crooked or vibrating steering wheel. When driving on a straight road, your steering wheel should be almost completely straight and centred. If this isn’t the case, you may be experiencing issues with your wheel alignment.
Uneven tyre wear
Uneven and rapid tyre wear is another telltale sign of wheel misalignment. Your tyres will wear out in different areas as they will be unable to evenly distribute the weight of your vehicle.
Wheel balancing vs. wheel alignment
Despite both wheel balancing and alignment services helping your vehicle drive more smoothly, there are noticeable differences in the service procedures of both.
In some instances where you expect you may need a wheel alignment service, it is possible that you’ll require a wheel balancing service instead. This means a qualified mechanic will correct any weight imbalances in each wheel individually, to ensure a smoother ride.
Your mechanic will be able to identify when a wheel balancing service is required over a wheel alignment service, as your tyres will have worn out significantly and there will be clear suspension and vibration issues with your vehicle.
Trust Us For Your Next Car Service
At Highfields Mechanical, we are experts in all things wheel alignment and wheel balancing. We’re here to make sure your vehicle runs smoothly year-round and to help keep you and your passengers as safe on the road as possible.
If you’ve noticed your car is steering differently, give our friendly and professional team a call today on (07) 4646 1780 or fill out our online contact form and we will be in touch.