What Is A Wheel Alignment?
When you keep up on your car’s maintenance, you’re often saving yourself a headache down the road if something left unchecked suddenly stops working as it should. With wheel alignment services from Tire Max, we thoroughly inspect your car before and after an alignment to ensure that we can stand behind our good work.
A four-wheel / 4×4 alignment is often the best choice for many drivers, particularly those who have front-wheel drive. Wheels can become misaligned during a car crash or by simply hitting road obstructions like potholes or curbs. Properly aligned wheels provide many benefits including cutting down on fuel costs since they’ll experience considerably less rolling resistance once adjusted. Routine wheel alignments also prevent uneven tire wear which ultimately saves you time & money on a new set.
A 2-wheel alignment, also known as a front-end alignment, is a service that involves only the front two tires of your vehicle. Though it can help to have your front wheels adjusted so that they run parallel to the center of your car, newer vehicles often need a 4WD alignment so that the rear wheels are not excluded from the service.
An alignment is an adjustment of your vehicle’s suspension system. It’s commonly called a wheel alignment or a tire alignment, but ultimately involves adjusting the angles of your vehicle’s suspension and how the tires touch the road. When an alignment is done on a car or truck, we’re primarily checking and adjusting three things: the camber, caster, & toe.
Camber is the angle of the tires inward towards the vehicle or outwards. A properly aligned camber will help the tire wear evenly, but if the tire is impacting the road at an angle one side will wear out faster. Worn bearings, ball joints, and suspension parts can impact the positive or negative camber and lead to misalignment.
Toe is the angle when viewing tires above – a toe in has the tires pointed towards the center of the hood, while a toe out has them pointed away from the hood. A properly aligned toe helps to keep all four wheels in parallel with each other for even tire wear.
Caster is the angle of your steering axis from your vehicle. If you draw a line in the center of your tire to the top of the hood, that would be the center line. Having a negative caster would push that line towards the hood, while a positive caster would be closer to the drivers seat. Having this misaligned can impact steering, and cornering.