Most people know that getting a car’s tires aligned is important for the overall health of the vehicle, but few understand why. In this article, we will answer the question “what is wheel alignment,” explore the importance of tire alignment, and tell you what you can do to ensure your car’s tires are always aligned properly.
What is wheel alignment, and what does it do for your car?
When your wheels are “out of alignment,” it simply means that they are not pointing in the same direction. This can happen for a number of reasons, including hitting a curb or pothole, or even just normal wear and tear over time. While it may not seem like a big deal, misaligned wheels can actually cause a number of problems.
They can lead to uneven tire wear, which not only reduces the lifespan of your tires but can also make them more susceptible to blowouts. They can also cause your car to pull to one side while driving, making it harder to control. In addition, misaligned wheels can decrease fuel efficiency and increase emissions. Thankfully, wheel alignment is a relatively simple and inexpensive process that can help to prolong the life of your tires and keep your car running smoothly.
The benefits of getting your tires aligned
Wheel alignment is often overlooked as a necessary car maintenance item. It simply refers to the adjustment of your car’s suspension so that the wheels are pointing in the correct direction.
Alignment may not seem like a big deal, but consider what happens if your wheels are even slightly misaligned:
Your car will pull to one side when you drive, making it more difficult to control.
You’ll also experience uneven tire wear, which can lead to premature tire failure. Misaligned wheels can negatively affect your gas mileage.
So next time you’re due for an oil change or tune-up, be sure to ask your mechanic about getting your wheels aligned. It’s a small adjustment that can make a big difference in the way your car drives.
Signs that you need to get your tires aligned
Watch out for these signs that your vehicle needs a tire alignment.
First, if you notice your car pulling to one side of the road, that’s a good indicator that something is off.
Secondly, if you find yourself having to constantly adjust your steering wheel to keep the car going straight, that’s another sign that your tires might be out of alignment.
Finally, if you notice uneven or premature wear on your tires, it’s a good idea to get them checked out.
If you’re not sure whether or not your car needs an alignment, it’s always best to consult with a professional. They’ll be able to take a look at your tires and let you know for sure.
How much does tire alignment cost, on average?
When weighing the cost of any car maintenance service, it’s important to ask yourself how much it would cost to NOT do it. In the case of wheel alignment, the answer is: quite a lot.
Inefficient tires can lead to decreased fuel efficiency, as well as increased emissions. You’ll also find yourself having to replace your tires more often if they’re constantly wearing down prematurely. All of this can end up costing you a lot of money in the long run.
The good news is that tire alignment is a relatively inexpensive service, especially when compared to the cost of new tires or major repairs. The average cost of a tire alignment is between $50 and $100.
Some factors that can affect the cost of your alignment include the type of vehicle you have and the severity of the misalignment.
Be sure to consult with a professional to get an accurate estimate for your specific vehicle.
Tips for maintaining proper tire alignment
Fortunately, there are a few simple things you can do to help keep your tires properly aligned.
- Be mindful of the way you drive, and avoid hitting curbs or potholes whenever possible. If you do hit something, be sure to have your alignment checked as soon as possible.
- Rotate your tires regularly. This will help to ensure that they wear down evenly.
- Get your alignment checked at least once a year or more often if you notice any of the signs we mentioned earlier.
By following these simple tips, you can help to prolong the life of your tires and keep your car running smoothly. Wheel alignment is a small but important part of routine car maintenance. Don’t let it fall by the wayside!
Now that you know all about tire alignment, we hope you’ll take good care of your vehicle. Be sure to schedule an appointment with your mechanic at the first sign of uneven wear on your tires. And, as always, happy driving!