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What Everyone Should Know about Wheel Alignment

You know wheel alignment is an important part of your regular vehicle maintenance, but that doesn’t necessarily mean you understand what happens during it or why it is necessary. To get a better understanding of your vehicle as well as why wheel alignment is necessary, there are a few important facts that everyone should know.

Benefits of Wheel Alignment

Whenever you have a wheel alignment done, it should be a complete alignment, as it is the only way to truly take advantage of the benefits of this type of service. With properly aligned wheels, your tires will wear down less. In fact, improper alignment is one of the biggest causes of tires wearing sooner than they should. In other words, regular wheel alignment can save you a good amount of money on tires over the course of your car’s lifespan.

By aligning the wheels of your vehicle, you will also find yourself with better gas mileage. That is because a total alignment makes sure that all four wheels of your vehicle are parallel as well as properly inflated. With this correct inflation, there is less rolling resistance, which in turn improves the fuel economy.

Following a wheel alignment, you will also notice that your vehicle handles better. It won’t be pulling to one side or another, and you won’t have to put your steering wheel on an angle to drive straight. While not all handling issues are resolved by wheel alignment, a large number are.

The biggest advantage of wheel alignment, however, is its ability to keep you safe. After an alignment, your vehicle will handle as expected and react as you think it will, helping you complete evasive maneuvers or just drive in all weather conditions. Additionally, your technician will inspect the suspension of your car during the alignment, replacing worn parts to keep you safe.

Wheel Alignment with or Without Adjustable Rear Suspensions

The exact procedure for a wheel alignment will depend on whether or not your car has an adjustable rear suspension. In the case of those without an adjustable rear suspension, the technician will read the alignment angle for every wheel and start by centering the steering wheel. Your technician then sets the angles for alignment to the ones specified by your vehicle manufacturer using their high-tech machinery. In the case of vehicles with adjustable rear suspensions, the process is similar, but the rear alignment angles are set before the steering wheel, and both of these are followed by aligning the front wheels.

The Most Common Questions and Answers

It is incredibly common to still have questions about wheel alignment even with the above information. If for example, you want to know how to recognize if your wheels aren’t properly aligned, you can look for your vehicle pulling or drifting or tire wear that is excessive or uneven. It is also possible that you will feel as if something is loose or the steering wheel isn’t level. Another common question is how frequently you should have your wheels aligned. This varies slightly by model, but your owner’s manual will have the answer. If you prefer, you contact our Piqua mechanics, tell them your make and model, and then ask them how often the wheels should be aligned.

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