No More Mistakes With Wheel Alignment Near Me
You need to know a few basic things before searching the best wheel alignment near me. In fact, a proper wheel alignment to your car will help it function accurately. If the wheels of your car are not properly aligned, then it might cause serious damage and even accidents.
Aligning your wheel basically means adjusting suspension of your vehicle. A vehicle’s suspension is a mechanism that connects the vehicle to its wheels. Wheel alignment does not only mean adjusting just the tires but adjusting this particular suspension. In order to properly align the tires or the wheels, it is important to adjust the angles of the wheels based upon the direction in which they make contact with the surface of the road while driving. If this adjustment is not done properly then your vehicle might pull towards a particular direction while driving or vibrate weirdly.
How do I understand whether I need to visit a shop for wheel alignment?
Your car will show you many indications if you have misaligned wheels. If you observe the following problems in your car, then immediately align your tires by contacting a professional technician:
- Irregular tread wear.
- Vehicle pulling towards left or right suddenly.
- Even if you are driving straight your steering wheel is moving off center.
- Vibrating steering wheel.
- Squeaking noise from tires.
- Steering wheel takes time to turn back after taking a turn.
Three major tire angles that are checked
The following angles are measured by a special laser measuring equipment after sources of laser beams are attached with the tires of a vehicle:
- The camber: When you observe the vehicle from the front, the camber is the inward or the outward angle of the wheel. If the wheel is inclined towards the inward direction way too much than the normal, then it is known as negative camber and if it is inclined towards the outward direction then it is called positive camber. Either of the positive or negative camber implicates that the alignment of your tire is not appropriate and it needs to be adjusted. Corroded bearings, ball joints, and/or any other parts of the car associated with the wheel suspension might be the reason of misaligned camber.
- The toe: To what extent your car’s tires move inward or outward, when observed from above, is called toe alignment. When the tires of your car are turned towards the inward direction, it is called toe-in alignment and when the tires are turned towards the outwards direction then it is called toe-out alignment. If either of the toe-in or toe-out alignments are observed in your car, then your car needs wheel adjustment.
- The caster: The caster angle helps to balance the steering and ensures steadiness and cornering of the vehicle. Actually, it is the angle made by the center of axis of the steering when viewed from one side of the vehicle. If the vehicle has a positive caster the center of axis of the steering will incline more towards the driver. In case of negative caster, the center of axis of the vehicle will tilt more towards the front side of the vehicle. In both the cases, your car needs tire alignment.
Why do you need a wheel alignment?
Wheel alignment is one of the most important parts of car maintenance. The interval on which you align the tires of your car will determine how long your car’s tire will last and much you have to spend on tires in the future.
If you own a vehicle of your own, you will understand that purchasing tires can be really costly. So you have to take every preventive measure you can to expand and maintain the tires’ lifespan. You need a tire alignment the moment you buy new tires to ensure that additional tire wear and tear does not occur just because the tires were a little misaligned. If you can take some precautions, then you can avoid changing your tires very often.
Understand the importance of wheel alignment and align the wheels of your vehicle regularly. Otherwise, you have to keep spending thousands of bucks behind new tires every now and then. Improper alignment on your car’s wheels also puts your life at risk while driving. You have to put extra effort while driving as you might face difficulties regarding keeping the steering straight, vehicle shaking repeatedly.
Inappropriate tire alignment can lead to uneven wear of tires, that too, prematurely. Following are some reasons for the appropriate tire alignment of your car:
- Feathering: When the tread of one side of a car is smooth and rough and uneven on the other side it indicates that the tires are feathered. Improper tire alignment can lead to feathering of tires which needs to be fixed immediately to avoid various car inconveniences and road accidents.
- Camber wear: This kind of corrosion in tread wear indicates the interior or exterior of the treat is more worn out than the central portion of the tread. Positive or negative camber is responsible for this kind of strain.
- Heel or Toe wear: This kind of strain takes place when one side of the tread wears out faster than the other side of the tread. If you touch the tread it will feel like teeth of saw when observed from a particular direction. The corrosion on heel or toe is an indication of under inflation and absence of rotation. If you feel like your car’s tires have these kinds of corrosion, then contact a technician immediately to check whether the alignment of your wheels is correct or not.
- Balancing of tire: Usually, there are two kinds of tire or wheel imbalance that needs to be fixed or aligned- static (single plane) and dynamic (double plane).
Static balance means balancing your vehicle on a single plane, i.e. moving vertically, which might cause vibration to your vehicle. On the other hand, a dynamic balance indicates balancing your vehicle on two planes- vertically and horizontally. In both kinds of balance, one needs a balancing mechanism to make sure it is working properly.
- Reduced car performance: If the wheels of your car are misaligned then your car performance will be poor also it will consume more fuel. Especially while applying brakes, parking or taking sharp turns you will face difficulty with misaligned wheels you will feel more inconvenient. With the wheels of your car perfectly aligned you will be able to enjoy a smooth ride no matter how much sharp turns you take and sudden brakes you apply.
- Corroded tires: With prolonged usage, all tires are bound to wear out with time. But if the tires are not properly aligned then they wear out much faster. This is because while driving with misaligned tires, the tires need to give more effort to stay straight and this puts more pressure on the tires and leads to premature corrosion. If you ignore this problem, then in the long run you will have to spend more money on fixing your tires along with aligning them.
- Problems with the steering wheel: If the wheels of your vehicle are not properly aligned then you will face problems with your steering wheel. Even though you are driving straight, your car will pull towards right or left repeatedly, this is very risky and can even cause road accidents. Fixing this problem is always better than compromising with it.
The list of wheel alignment problems that you should concern:
- When your car suddenly hits a pothole or a curb it causes a heavy impact on your car. This sudden jerking will cause misaligned wheel problems. If your vehicle encounters a severe road accident, then also there are chances of your wheel being misaligned.
- Hitting a curb while driving is a very common car accident. The jerk or a jolt while hitting those concrete curbs is enough to misalign the front wheels of your car.
- Speed bumps are there on the road for a reason, they are a gentle reminder to slow down your car in case you are speeding too much. When you hit the speed bumps hard without slowing down it affects the alignment of your car and the suspension is jarred to some extent. The heavier your car and the more speed you hit the speed bump with, your alignment will be affected even more.
- Hitting a pothole while driving is something that cannot be avoided at times, especially in rough terrains. When you hit a pothole hard it misaligns both the wheel’s adjustment and the suspension of your car. Your wheels and the suspension of your car receive a huge shock when you hit a pothole suddenly. Your car’s wheels might also get misaligned with time if your car is driven on a road with lots of potholes. Always drive slowly whenever you see potholes in order to save your car’s alignment.
- Even if you get into a minor accident, it might misalign your car’s suspension. Sometimes even if an accident has not caused any visible damage to your car, it might seriously affect your car’s wheel alignment. Check your car’s alignment and suspension after getting into any sort of accidents.
- Wheels might also get misaligned due to corroded suspension parts upon prolonged usage. If some parts wear out due to rust or any other reason, then it will cause the alignment of the wheel shift from its actual alignment. So maintain and service your vehicle regularly to avoid this kind of problem.
- If the height of the car is changed with aligning the suspension of the car, then it will result inappropriate wheel alignment. When the wheels of a vehicle are aligned they done according to a certain height of the car. If the height of the car is changed the alignment of the car is also required to adjust along with it. If that’s not done, your car will face wheel alignment problems.
- If you do not maintain and service your car regularly then it might also lead to misaligned wheels. Always take your car for servicing since your car also needs some care sometimes.
What is the cost estimation for wheel alignment near me in US? There are many automobile repair shops that will align your car’s wheel. The average expenditure for aligning your car all of the wheel starts from $75. If you want to align a single wheel then it will cost you more, around $200. Wheel alignment is undoubtedly very necessary for your car.
There are basically two kinds of wheel alignment service- one is for all of the four wheels and another is for the front wheels. Alignment for four wheels is costlier than aligning the front wheels but it is always better and safe to align four wheels at once instead of aligning only the front wheels or a single wheel. Again, tire alignment for a truck is costlier than tire alignment of a car since trucks are heavier and a bit harder to work with. Almost any automotive repair shop will align your vehicle but their cost will differ from one another. Following are wheel alignment cost estimates of some of the leading companies in US:
- Cost estimation by Firestone for wheel alignment: Average price in case of 1-year warranty is $80. Average price in case of lifetime warranty is $170.
- Cost estimation by Goodyear for wheel alignment: Average price in case of 6 months’ warranty is $100. Goodyear does not provide any lifetime warranty.
- Cost estimation by Sears for wheel alignment: Average price in case of 1-year warranty is $115. Average price in case of 6 months’ warranty is $85. Average price in case of 3 years’ warranty is $85.
- Cost estimation by Wal-Mart for wheel alignment: Average price in case of 6 months’ warranty is $125. Average price in case of unlimited warranty is $180.
- Cost estimation by NTB for wheel alignment: Average price in case of 6 months’ warranty is $125. Average price in case of unlimited warranty is $180.
- Cost estimation by Pep Boys for wheel alignment: Average price in case of 1-year warranty is $110. Average price in case of 3 months’ warranty is $85.
- Cost estimation by Mr. Tire for wheel alignment: They do not provide any warranty; they charge $85 for aligning your car’s wheel.
Following are some wheel’s alignment costs based upon some car models:
- Impala: $205 for all the four wheels.
- Accord: $99 for the front wheels.
- F-150: $150 for all the four wheels.
- Sonata: $95 for all the four wheels.
- Sedan: $67.50 for all the four wheels.
Any car alignment repairing will align your wheels once the warranty period is over or you have crossed the threshold mileage, whichever comes first. Some companies offer 1-year warranty; some offer a warranty for 6 months and some for a lifetime. If something happens to your wheel’s alignment within this warranty period, then you will receive alignment servicing for free. In case of lifetime warranties, you are having to pay more for once and do not have to worry about the wheel’s alignment for the rest of the lifetime of your car.
What are the advantages of getting your vehicle’s wheels aligned on time?
- Regular wheel alignment will improve the performance of your tire and overall performance of your car as well to some extent.
- Regular wheel alignment makes sure you enjoy a safe drive with your car.
- A vehicle with proper wheel alignment will consume less fuel and thus makes your vehicle fuel efficient.
- Aligning your car’s wheel on time will protect the tires and increase its lifespan.
- Proper wheel alignment on time ensures smooth and contented driving.
When is the right time to get my car’s wheels aligned?
It is recommended to align the wheels of your car after every 10,000 miles. Needless to say, this also depends upon the model of your car, how much your car is used, and the kind of road you usually drive upon. If the road where you drive your car frequently is not in a good condition, has a lot of potholes and bumps then the wheel alignment needs to be performed more frequently, say after every 5000 miles.
The way you drive your car also affects the wheel alignment of your car. The speed with which you take turns or while driving on a road full of potholes will change the alignment of your car’s wheels. As a result of horizontal forces while rough driving in these kinds of situations, it can pull the tires of your car in the outward direction. If you hear a weird noise while taking turns, then it can be due to problems with your wheel’s alignment.
Don’t forget about tire balancing?
Tire balancing is required when you buy new tires for your vehicle. This process is carried out to make sure that all the tires are balanced with the weights of the wheel. If tire balancing is done properly then it will ensure a smooth ride. If the tire balancing is not done or is done inappropriately then your steering wheel will move back and forth while driving. In case you observe any problems like this, you should immediately contact the nearby mechanic who will take care of this problem.
If your car’s tires are wearing out faster than the normal rate, then you will be able to tell that you have tire imbalance problems. You need to fix it immediately otherwise a vehicle with imbalanced tires might vibrate weirdly while driving. This constant vibration will cause wear and tear to other parts of the car which even more dangerous. After a few years, you have to end up replacing these parts as well which is going to be even more expensive than fixing imbalanced tires.
Unbalanced tires will lead your car’s tires to wear out at a fast rate. This is because if you are driving with imbalanced tires, the tires have to put more effort to stay steady and straight on the road than normal. Due to this your car’s tires loses grip eventually and might cause accidents. It is always safe and better to keep your car’s tires aligned and balanced to avoid any sort of inconvenience related to your car.
Tips on how to choose the best wheel alignment services
Any sort of inconvenience while driving can be quite irritating and stressful; it might also distract your focus from the road. After observing that you might have a wheel alignment problem, your main step is going to be finding a suitable and reliable automobile repair shop. It is advisable to always do some research and backgrounds checks before handing over your vehicle to a particular automobile repairing shop. Needless to say, the cost of repairing and the standard of work provided will vary from one shop to another. It is always wise to ask around, read reviews, and get quotes before finalizing any automobile shop where you haven’t been before.
Following are some tips to find the suitable wheel alignment near me:
- Ask your known associates for suggestions: Needless to say, your close friends, co-workers, family members will always give honest opinion and recommendations. It is their mere words that you can completely trust. You can simply ask them about the best automobile shops near you where they have been before.
- Get cost estimates from various shops and compare: Always ask the hourly charges of a particular shop and get a cost estimation of your car’s repair work. This will give you a rough idea regarding all the repair works that they are going to perform and how much you have to spend. You will also be able to understand from their cost estimate whether they are overcharging you with anything or not. By comparing the hourly charges and the cost estimation of a few shops you will understand which one is being honest and which one is overcharging you.
- Do not choose a shop just because it is the cheapest: If the charges of a shop are quite cheap then that solely cannot be a reason for you to choose that shop. There might be a possibility that they do not provide up to the mark service or maybe their mechanics are not well experienced and knowledgeable enough.
- Check the certificates: A renounced automobile shop with good customer service will have many awards and certificates to prove their capability. These certificates are very important for your car to hand over to a shop. If a shop does not have sufficient or no certificates, then it is better to avoid them. Choose those who have ASE certificate and other certificates as well.
- Observe the appearance of the shop: The looks of a place tell a lot about it. Check whether the shop is clean and well organized. Observe how they are treating other cars present under them for repairing. Ask them whether they use the latest equipment’s and mechanisms to repair car wheel alignment problems.
- Ask questions about your car’s problems: Ask various questions regarding the problem or problems that your car is facing and see how knowledgeable they are. Ask them whether you are going to need a replacement of some parts or repair work will solve the current problem. If they are installing new parts, then check the quality and brand that they are using.
- Whether the shop is insured or not: If the shop is not insured then it is quite risky to hand over your car in a place like this. What if a fire breaks out or the place gets robbed and your vehicle gets damaged somehow due to this? If the shop is not insured, then you are not getting for the damaged caused by someone else. This will never happen if the shop is insured, in case of any mishap, your damage will be covered by them.
- Whether they give any warranty period: A good and reputed automobile shop should at least give a warranty period of 6 months after their repair work. If something happens i.e. the same car problem arises within the warranty period, then you will be serviced for free. This is to ensure that the servicing provided by the shop is one hundred percent perfect and fixed your problem.
- Check reviews online: There are many people who leave their honest reviews online about a particular shop on the shop’s website. You can also check these before handing over your car to an automobile repair shop.
- Whether the shop is convenient location wise: You do not want to drive your car thousands of miles when it is showing some problems. The automobile shop that you are choosing must be around your vicinity so that you can conveniently drive your car there. Before anything happens to your car, check your neighborhood for some reliable automobile repair shops so that you can rush there in case of car emergencies.
- Trust your instincts: Always trust your instincts while choosing a repair shop. If you like they are being dishonest or do not know much about repairing work, then look for another shop elsewhere.
Although almost any shop will repair your car’s alignment and suspension but still there can be many fraudulent shops that in spite of taking a huge amount of money do not do their job properly, especially if they understand that you don’t know much about car parts and its mechanism. It is always better to play safe rather than risking something expensive like your car.
Top 7 wheel alignment services in US
Doug’s Alignment and Complete Auto Care
Contact: (574) 533-9422.
Benefits provided by Doug’s Alignment and Complete Auto Care to their customers:
- They have well-experienced technicians who will deal your car problems with the utmost car.
- They have a good customer service.
Firestone Complete Auto Care
Contact: (734) 666-3586.
Benefits provided by Firestone Complete Auto Care to their customers:
- They provided all kinds of wheel alignment services for four wheels, front wheels or single wheel.
- You can completely rely on them with any sort of car problem that you might be facing.
A & R Alignment and Auto Repair
Contact: (631) 499-1994.
Benefits provided by A & R Alignment and Auto Repair to their customers:
- They provide any kind of automotive repair with utmost care.
- They can fix all kinds of wheel alignment problems of your car.
Urban Classics Auto Repair
Contact: (718) 622-8484.
Benefits provided by Urban Classics Auto Repair to their customers:
- They are quite popular for their great customer service and professionalism.
- They can fix any kind of wheel alignment and suspension problems of your car within time.
Pat’s Auto Service Center
Contact: (910) 791-8481.
Benefits provided by Pat’s Auto Service Center to their customers:
- For them, customer service and satisfaction is the most important thing, they excel in customer service.
- Their services have won many awards and certificates so you can rely on them with any sort of car problem blindly.
- They have serviced almost all kinds of car models starting from Hyundai, Mitsubishi to Nissan and many more.
Albany CA Tires & Repairing
Contact: (510) 525-6427.
Benefits provided by Albany CA Tires & Repairing to their customers:
- They provide honest servicing to your cars.
- They have well experienced and knowledgeable mechanics who know what they are doing.
Ames IA Tires Wheels & Car Care
Contact: (515) 233-1700.
Benefits provided by Ames IA Tires Wheels & Car Care to their customers:
- They provide any kind of car repair work along with full servicing.
- They offer various coupons and discounts on car tires.
- Their mechanics are very knowledgeable and well behaved.