We all know that an oil change is a regular service our vehicles need every several thousand miles. Perhaps a new battery every 2-4 years. So, why do we not consider a wheel alignment as regular preventative maintenance for our vehicles? Wheel alignments are often forgotten but can cause some serious damage over time. Below are the 6 benefits of ensuring you make wheel alignment a regular service for your vehicle.
- Fuel Efficiency – A vehicle with poor alignment can decrease gas mileage by up to 10%. With a larger vehicle or truck, this will force more stops to the local gas station and comes at a cost, especially over time. A misaligned vehicle causes the tires to drag, rather than moving freely. A wheel alignment will help you conserve fuel and spend less money at the pump.
- Easier Ride – When your vehicle’s tires are out of alignment, your vehicle will pull to the left or right, causing a bumpy and vibrating sensation as you drive. A proper wheel alignment gives your vehicle a smooth ride and a more enjoyable driving experience.
- Better Steering – If your vehicle’s wheels are out of alignment, it is going to be harder to steer properly. Your vehicle’s misalignment may cause you to hold the steering wheel at a weird angle, just to keep the vehicle driving straight or moving from side-to-side.
- Safety – We cannot stress the safety of a poor wheel alignment enough. The lack of control due to misalignment will make it more difficult to steer your vehicle of any debris in the road or if you are required to swiftly move your vehicle to prevent an accident. Safety alone is enough of concern to ensure your vehicle has a correct alignment.
- Fewer Repairs – A misaligned vehicle can lead to bigger issues that will be more costly down the road. If you are unable to steer clear of road damage or roadway debris, you could cause more substantial damage to your tires and suspension. The minor investment in regular wheel alignments may prevent you from having to pay for more costly repairs down the road.
- Tire Life – Your vehicle’s misalignment could lead to uneven tire wear and a lower tread life. Waiting too long to get a wheel alignment may cause you to need new tires sooner than you should. If your vehicle has any steering issues or you find uneven tire wear or early tire wear, you should bring your vehicle in to be inspected for an alignment.
Below are the 3 types of tire wear to look out for:
- Feathering – Feather edge tire wear or tires that are feathered occur when the tread ribs are worn lower or smoother on one side and higher or sharper on the other. This is a clear sign of a vehicle with misaligned tires.
- Camber Wear – If the inside or outside of your tires tread are more worn than the center of your tires, this could be camber wear. There are two different types of camber wear, positive camber wear and negative camber wear. Positive camber wear occurs when your tires are tilting outward and negative camber wear occurs when your tires are tilting inward. Too much camber wear in either direction is bad and means your vehicle may need a wheel alignment.
- Heal and Toe Wear – Noise or vibration of your vehicle may be a sign of heal or toe wear on your tires. Heal and toe wear occurs when one side of the tires’ tread blocks is wearing quicker than the other side.
It is recommended that you get your tires aligned every 6,000 miles to ensure you do not have any of these issues. Increase your vehicle’s fuel economy, improve tire life, and stay safe with a regular wheel alignment. RDI Power and RDI Fleet perform wheel alignments at your vehicle’s recommended mileage or hours to ensure a safe and reliable vehicle. If you are unsure whether your vehicle needs a wheel alignment, please do not hesitate to contact us or stop by the shop. RDI Power is Tampa's best diesel repair shop!