What are the benefits to me?
The benefits are numerous and in today’s world should not be ignored
• Reduced Tyre Wear
Improper alignment is a major cause of premature tyre wear. Over the years, a properly aligned car can add thousands of miles to tyre life.
• Improved Fuel Consumption
Fuel consumption reduces as the drag on the tyres (rolling resistance) decreases. Four wheel alignment sets the wheels straight/parallel, which along with correct tyre pressures, minimises the rolling resistance.
• Saves Money & Environment
By preventing premature tyre wear (and early tyre disposal) and improving fuel economy/ CO2 emissions, it not only reduces the cost of motoring – putting more money in your pocket, but helps the environment too!
• Improved Handling
Many handling problems can be corrected by four wheel alignment, giving you the driver a better and enjoyable driving experience.
• Safer Driving
Misalignment will make the car less stable when taking emergency or evasive action. A suspension system inspection is part of an alignment procedure, therefore potentially allows worn parts to be spotted before they cause a a more costly problem.
How do I know if my car wheels are out of alignment?
A good question! it is not always obvious, especially if the misalignment is slight, but there are signs to look out for:
• Uneven tyre wear on the fronts or the rears
If you can’t visibly see the wear, run your hands over the tyre and you can soon feel where the rubber has worn excessively, on the inside or outside edges. (Warning: Be careful, in extreme cases of excessive wear fine wire may be protruding from the rubber).
• The car pulls to the left and right
When driving along a straight flat road and you either need to compensate through the steering to keep the car driving straight the car drifts to the left or right under braking.
• A crooked steering wheel
The steering wheel is not straight, even when driving straight
What is the difference between Tracking and Four Wheel Alignment?
Tracking was born of a bygone era, when cars had very little or no adjustment. Any measurement and adjustment tended to be on the front wheels, for the ‘Toe’ angle only. Tracking on the fronts (sometimes called a ‘two wheel alignment’) does not take in account the direction in which the rear wheels are pointing. So if you have the fronts adjusted and set straight, if the rears are out of alignment, the car may pull and tyres could still wear.
In its original sense, Tracking uses gauges (usually the hang-on style) where the operator peers through a ‘scope’ or views a light/laser beam on a scale. This system does not allow for run out compensation (taking account for any errors in the wheel rim), so the reading result can only at best be approximate.
Four Wheel Alignment measures a minimum of 12 angles and compares them to the alignment data specified by the vehicle manufacturer. Wheel rim run-out compensation is taken into account, which gives accurate and repeatable readings. With such accurate readings, Four Wheel Alignment allows toe adjustments of individual wheels which ensure the steering wheel is set straight. Further adjustments of camber, caster and other angles (where necessary) can ensure optimum performance and savings.
On modern cars, tracking alone is unlikely to deliver complete alignment or complete customer satisfaction
How often should the alignment be checked?
As a general rule it is wise to have your alignment checked;
• every 12,000 – 15,000 miles or at least once a year
• However, it is also highly reccomended when;
• You knowingly hit a kerb or pothole
• New tyres are fitted
• Steering and suspension components are replaced
• The vehicle has been involved in any form of accident or collision