Does My Car Need An Alignment -Omaha Nebraska

 
Alignment assures your tires meet the road at the proper angle, your wheels are pointing straight and your tires are centered in the wheel wells. It adjusts the angles of your vehicle's wheels to original specs for best gas mileage, proper road contact, a smooth ride, and the longest tire life.


Common Signs of Wheel Misalignment
You should have an Alignment performed:

-Every Year
-You get new tires, even just one.
-You lift or lower your vehicle.
-Suspension parts that affect the tire angles are replaced or adjusted.
-If you've had a fender-bender or a hard impact with a curb or other obstacles.
-If you notice uneven tire wear, steering pull, or an off-center steering wheel.

Regular checks are important because alignment issues aren't always obvious. The wrong toe angle can go unnoticed and so can atypical tire wear. Cars usually go out of alignment gradually, so you may not realize how much it was impacting drivability, gas mileage or tire wear until it's corrected.

The most common signs of misalignment are pulling to one side while you're driving, unusual tire wear and/or a steering wheel that's off-center even though your vehicle is pointed straight. But these symptoms can have other causes, sometimes simpler and sometimes not.

Steering pull can be caused by road conditions. If the asphalt has grooves that are slightly farther apart than your car's axles, you may feel a pull as the tires on one side ride slightly higher. If the road is noticeably higher in the center, the vehicle may veer as the tires try to find a level surface.

Torque steer is a pull that happens during acceleration, from a difference in power being delivered to the wheels. A pull only during braking is probably from a caliper on one side sticking and not fully disengaging from the brake disc. A failing tire and improper tire rotation are two more causes of steering wheel pull.

Poor alignment may not be the issue if your steering wheel sometimes tugs in one direction and then the other. A bent or worn suspension part - ball joints, strut bearings or tie rods - could be to blame.

Atypical tire wear may be the result of worn shocks or struts, bushings or springs, or from carrying heavy loads (all of which can also put your vehicle out of alignment). Uneven wear can also be caused by driving on over-, underinflated or imbalanced tires.

An off-center steering wheel can be caused by worn steering or suspension parts. Just getting an alignment won't fix the root cause.

One last common point of confusion: Vibration while underway is often a symptom of out-of-balance tires, not bad alignment.