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Why is Wheel Alignment important?
The purpose of aligning the wheels is to adjust the handling of the front wheels while driving. If the wheel alignment is incorrect, the life of the tires is reduced, with a decrease in the performance of the vehicle
A wheel alignment ensures optimum chassis adjustment, less tire wear and better braking performance.
A cars wheel alignment is not necessarily on the routine checklist for most drivers, but there are many important reasons to keep wheel alignment in mind. Your vehicles suspension is subjected to heavy loads, holes in the road, and other road damage all of which have are strong impact on the chassis mechanics. What often happens is that the track, lintel or other chassis parameters move with time. If you think you have any problems with your vehicles alignment, you should not hesitate and have a wheel alignment carried out by our specialist team at Crackley Garage, Kenilworth.
The change in axle geometry can lead to a whole host of complications, which all have a negative impact on driving safety and tire wear.
In order for your vehicle to travel exactly straight ahead and allow for precise control, the wheels must always be as perpendicular as possible to the road, in all driving conditions and be oriented largely parallel to each other. Only if the track and camber values are correctly adjusted can the tires use the maximum footprint and ensure a safe driving experience.
If the track is adjusted on one side, the car pulls left or right. Moreover, in the case of left-hand curves, it is different from that in the right-hand curve. The lintel, on the other hand, acts on the bearing surfaces of the tires. If, for example, the camber is set negative (the wheel tends to the top of the vehicle), the lateral forces increase in fast-running corners. Both the straight run and the braking distance are simultaneously adversely affected. If the lintel has moved into the positive and the wheel tends to move up from the car, the curve stability of the car will deteriorate as the ground surface will further decrease in fast corners.
The chassis is a complex, robust, but also susceptible system. The interplay of all components (transverse link, tie rod, coupling rod) results in the so-called axle geometry. Ideally, the occurring forces are optimally transmitted during travel by means of a precisely adjusted axle. These forces are triggered by pull, pressure, and directional changes. Irregularities and defects of the parts can lead to various consequences and impair the driving comfort.
When a wheel alignment is required?
We recommend checking the alignment of your wheels:
- At your annual service
- After a car accident.
- After a tire replacement.
- In the presence of abnormal wear of the tires on the shoulder.
- When manoeuvrability is unstable.
- When driving quality is worsened.
How do we test you wheel alignment?
There are three main types of wheel alignment that should all be adjusted to get the optimal performance from your car:
- Measures by how much a pair of wheels are turned in or out from a straight ahead position
- Toe alignment can be carried out on the front wheels or on both the front and rear wheels.
- If toe alignment is out you will feel your vehicle pulling to one side.
- A camber is the vertical tilt of the wheel
- The tyre tread will wear excessively on the edge if the camber alignment is out
- If the camber alignment is not the same for each wheel it can cause your vehicle to pull to one side
- Caster alignment is the angle of the steering pivot seen from the side of the vehicle
- Caster affects a vehicles steering stability
- If caster alignment is out, it can cause problems with your straight line tracking
- If the caster is equal but more negative, then your steering will be light and the vehicle may wander
Here at Crackley Garage, Kenilworth we use Hunter four-wheel alignment equipment, a fantastic system to ensure accurate wheel alignment.
The Hunter alignment technology uses high-definition image sensors to measure the positioning and orientation of your vehicle's wheels with exact accuracy. This is then matched to your manufactures specification to ensure your wheels are aligned as the manufacturer has stated.