The directional stability of a car depends to a large extent on the angle of its wheels and balance of its tyres. It is neither practical nor possible to maintain the factory settings of a car. It is bound to get skewed over time. However, wheel misalignment and tyre imbalance are something that you can ill afford.
Although entirely separate issues, both wheel alignment and tyre balance are detrimental to the condition of your car tyres, among other things. An alarming majority of cars in Britain have these issues primarily because they are difficult to detect and easy to overlook. An increase in awareness seems to be the need of the hour as far as these problems are concerned.
Let’s look at what wheel alignment and balancing are and how to spot them in particular.
What is wheel alignment?
Wheel alignment refers to the direction to which your car’s wheels are facing. Ideally, they should be perpendicular to the road, facing straight ahead. They should also be parallel to each other.
Problems arise when these angles are skewed due to the continuous impact of the road. You may notice one of the following angles getting distorted.
Camber- Angle of the wheels when viewed from the front.
Toe- Angle of the wheels when viewed from above.
Caster- Angle of the steering axis against the centre line.
If the wheels are not facing straight ahead and tilting towards any side, there’s a problem with their alignment. Detecting it can be a little tricky; so look out for the following things.
Increased wear on any particular side of the tyre.
The steering wheel is not centred even when you are driving straight.
A sharp fall in your car’s fuel economy.
The car pulls to a particular side.
These are all tell-tale signs that your vehicle needs wheel alignment in Harworth immediately. Take your vehicle to an authorized service garage and let the experts take a look.
What is tyre balancing?
New tyres have their entire mass spread evenly throughout their body. However, they might develop heavy and light spots where the concentration of mass is disproportionate. It manifests with cracks and bulges and affects key driving aspects such as steering response and fuel economy.
The symptoms of wheel balancing are a notch harder to detect than those of wheel alignment. Most of them occur so gradually that an average driver may completely overlook them.
Things you need to keep an eye out for include –
Bulges or cracks on the tyre body; it can be one large bulge or multiple smaller ones.
Vibrations through the steering wheel and floorboard which increase with speed.
Increased fuel consumption.
Reduced steering response.
Inspect your car tyres with a typically hands-on approach at least once a month to check for bulges on their body. If you find any, take your car to a respectable auto garage like Harworth Tyres Services and let their experienced technicians perform a wheel balancing Harworth for you. If the condition of the tyre has deteriorated beyond repair, you can buy a new set from their huge collection of spare tyres of global brands like Michelin and Continental.
Pay close attention to these issues that may be chipping away the performance of your car without you noticing it. Be alert!