You know you need to get it fixed eventually, but just how bad is it to drive a car that needs a wheel alignment?
How urgently does it need to be repaired? Read on to find out how the misalignment happens and what you need to know about having it repaired.
What Causes Wheels to Fall Out of Alignment?
Misalignment can happen very simply and quickly. Common occurrences are hitting a curb, driving over a pothole, or hitting something hard in the road, like a large chunk of ice or a big rock. Minor car accidents can also cause wheels to fall out of alignment.
The Results of Wheel Misalignment
When car wheels are correctly aligned, the tires rotate in a straight line, and the steering is smooth and steady. With wheel misalignment, the car becomes off-center, and steering in a straight line becomes more difficult. Beyond a less comfortable driving experience, several other issues can occur once alignment has been thrown off. Since the tires aren’t running smoothly and straightly, they are prone to wear and tear that happens much sooner.
Reduced gas mileage is another result of wheels being out of alignment, due to the tires pulling against each other and causing drag. As you continue to drive with misaligned tires, the vehicle experiences extra stress on the suspension. Damage can occur to the suspension components, as well as the engine and the steering column. Finally, the driver’s safety is at stake. A car out of alignment can drift or veer to the side while driving, potentially causing accidents.
Signs that Your Car Needs a Wheel Alignment
Even if you didn’t notice when the wheels went out of alignment, there are several signs and symptoms to watch out for, as they could indicate your car needs to be realigned.
- Tires wearing out prematurely
- Uneven wear on tires
- Drifting or veering
- Noises and vibrations
- Poor gas mileage
- Crooked steering wheel
Why You Should Take Care of Wheel Misalignment Promptly
While vehicles are certainly driveable while out of alignment, it’s a good idea to repair the problem early. Over time, the issues that result from misalignment gradually worsen. As mentioned above, the stress on the suspension and other car parts continues to increase, causing expensive repairs down the line.
Poor gas mileage and early tire wear also pose increased expenses. A good rule of thumb is to have your alignment checked every 6,000 miles. This preventive measure will save you time and money, and keep your car running smoothly and reliably.
Let the Pros at Schneider Auto Karosserie Body & Paint Help
If you suspect your car needs a wheel alignment, it’s time to schedule an appointment with Schneider Auto Karosserie. With our state-of-the-art equipment, Salt Lake City facilities, and expert automotive technicians, we can ensure that your car receives the proper care and attention it needs.
If you live in Salt Lake City, West Valley City, West Jordan, Murray, and neighboring cities in Utah, we can help. For a free estimate, give us a call at (801)-484-9400 or contact us online.