Wheel alignment can affect the amount of wear and tear that tyres endure. The normal alignment on most vehicles is designed to minimise wear and tear and maximise driver and passenger comfort. Correct four wheel alignment will reduce wear on your tyres, help increase their life and performance, and improve fuel economy. It will also improve handling and driving safety by reducing steering and stability problems. Misalignment can occur when hitting a kerb or driving through a pothole, as well as in more severe circumstances like accidents, which can knock your vehicle’s suspension out of alignment. Misalignment can also happen as suspension components wear or when they are replaced. When wheel alignment is incorrect, rapid tyre wear can occur especially on the edge of the tyres, and vehicle handling can also be adversely affected. It almost certainly means that you will have to replace your tyres earlier than expected
HOW ARE WHEELS ALIGNED?
Correcting wheel alignment involves adjusting the angles of the wheels so that they have the specified amount of toe in / toe out and camber. The three main adjustments which may be made concerning alignment are camber, caster, and toe.
Toe identifies the direction in which the tyres are pointing relative to the centre line of the vehicle. Toe is usually expressed as the difference in distance between the front of the wheels and the rear of the wheels on the same axle.
Toe settings affect the handling characteristics of the vehicle and its straight line stability.
Camber is the angle of lean of the wheel away from the vertical when viewed from the front of the vehicle. If the wheel leans too far, uneven wear will occur.
The camber angle is designed and adjusted for each vehicle to optimise the tyre’s behaviour on the straight and during a turn. If there is too much difference between the camber angles of the front wheels, the vehicle will tend to pull to one side.