It doesn’t typically happen overnight, but over time, many drivers experience alignment problems that cause their vehicle to pull to the right or the left. If your steering wheel is off-centered when traveling straight, you likely have an alignment problem on your hands. These are the most common reasons we get calls from customers inquiring about having us preform a wheel alignment. While these are the most common reasons for an alignment there are others.
- Vehicle Vibration At Higher Speeds
- Poor Handling
- Uneven Tire Wear
- Recent Accident
- Chassis and Suspension Part Replacement (Varies by repair)
- Tire Cupping (Also known as tire scalloping, this wear pattern appears as dips around the edge of your tire tread.)
- Uneven tire were inside or outside of tire
In order to have proper wheel alignment on your vehicle 3 items must all be within certain manufactures specifications. Your Camber, Caster, and Toe must be set correctly. When this happens all your tires will be pointed in the correct direction and the handling on your car will be vastly improved.
Camber is the inward or outward tilt of the front tires as viewed from the front of the vehicle. Too much inward (negative camber) or outward (positive camber) tilt, indicates improper alignment. Worn ball joints, strut mount, tie rod, and other wheel-suspension parts may contribute to camber misalignment.
Caster refers to the angle that is created by the steering pivot point in relation to the front and the back of the car. In simpler words – picture the side of a vehicle, now imagine a vertical axis (line) that runs straight through the center of your front wheels. Caster is positive if the line is angled forward, and negative if backward.
Toe represents the angle derived from pointing the tires inward or outward, when viewed from top-down view on the front wheel – much like looking down at your feet and angling them inward (toe-in) or outward (toe-out). Both require adjustment. Correct toe is important to even out the tire tread wear and extend service life. Toe-in allows both wheels to constantly generate force against one another, which reduces turning ability. However, positive toe creates better straight line driving characteristics and reduces oversteer.
It takes all 3 blind mice Camber, Caster, and Toe to be adjusted correctly in order for your vehicles alignment to be correct and your vehicle to track straight down the road. We call them the 3 Blind Mice because in order to see if your vehicle alignment is proper you need a special equipment to “SEE” the hidden angles previously discussed. If you have any concerns about your vehicles alignment please do not hesitate to give us at call or stop by any location so we can answer any questions you may have.