Wheel alignment is often overlooked by busy car owners until serious tire damage has been done. One wheel can be knocked out of alignment from the others by hitting a curb or a pothole in the road.
The tires will wear out very quickly and will need to be replaced prematurely. It could also lead to suspension damage. Conversely, worn suspension or steering components can lead to alignment problems for motorists.
But the big issue for drivers is safety. When your wheels are out of alignment, the vehicle will pull to one side, which could lead to an accident. When you’re out of alignment, you should have it taken care of right away.
Signs of alignment problems are: Your car pulls to one side. Also, your steering wheel may not be centered when you’re going straight. If you see the edges of one or more tires rapidly wearing down, your should have your service adviser look it over.
If you’ve been in an accident that involved a wheel, you should get your alignment checked. A big jolt can seriously throw things out of alignment, but drivers also need to understand that a series of smaller ones can add up. Worn steering or suspension components can also lead to alignment problems for drivers. That’s why your vehicle manufacturer recommends periodic alignment checks.
If your owner’s manual doesn’t specify, once a year might be appropriate, or check with your service adviser. He’ll be able to tell you if your vehicle requires a four wheel alignment or if it’s just the front wheels that can be aligned.
One thing is for sure, the cost of an alignment is cheaper than having to buy new tires because of neglect.