Proper wheel alignment is crucial to your car's optimal drivability. With the wheels pointed in the required direction, you will have smoother drives. Additionally, your fuel economy will be more efficient. However, the wheel alignment of your car can sometimes be affected by factors such as your driving conditions. For instance, driving through potholes can knock your car's wheels out of alignment. For effective car performance, bad wheel alignment has to be identified as soon as possible. For some people, this may be a challenge. For this reason, here are some of the common signs that your car has a bad wheel alignment.
Uneven Tyre Wear
This is one of the most obvious signs of poor wheel alignment. This is because when your wheels are out of alignment, some parts of the tyres will wear out at a faster rate than others. It is usually not easy to spot uneven tyre wear unless you make it a habit to check the tyres often. However, remember that uneven tyre-wear patterns can also be a result of other problems, such as suspension issues or simply improper inflation of the tyres. Therefore, when you take your car for a wheel alignment service, make sure all other potential causes are addressed first.
If your car tends to pull to one side while you're driving, you could be dealing with improper wheel alignment. In most cases, you will notice this when driving straight on level ground. The vehicle pulls because the alignment angles are not within specifications. However, similar to uneven tyre patterns, your vehicle may pull because of other reasons. For instance, wrong-sized and under-inflated tyres can make your car pull to the side when driving. Loose steering and suspension parts will also cause a similar problem. It's important to detect any signs of your car pulling as early as possible because in severe cases, the car may drift completely to a different lane, which would be dangerous.
If you feel unusual vibrations, especially in your steering wheel and when driving down a smooth or level road, the problem could be that your wheels have been knocked out of their alignment. Vibrations often happen as a result of the wheels pulling against each other.
Proper car wheel alignment not only helps with car performance and fuel economy—it also extends the service life of your car tyres by ensuring they don't wear unevenly. Contact a car service centre in your area for additional information.