If your wheels are pointed straight, your steering wheel logo should be straight. If it isn’t, your wheels are not aligned. This can make driving your automobile difficult. Del Hatt Automotive is going to talk about wheel alignment in this blog post so you have everything you need to know about it in one place.
What the Wheel Alignment Does
Basically, wheel alignment ensures that all of the tire treads meets the road. It ensures that your wheels aren’t tilted from top to bottom or side to side. Your wheels are part of your vehicle’s suspension, and your vehicle’s suspension is designed to go straight unless you use the steering wheel to turn it.
Your wheels are aligned in a few different ways. The toe-in/toe-out adjustment makes sure your wheels aren’t duck-footed or pigeon-toed. The camber adjustment makes sure the wheels are not leaning on the inner or outer shoulders of the tires. Finally, the caster adjustment ensures your wheels’ straight-line tracking in where it needs to be. Aligned wheels meet with the pavement perfectly.
Ways to Knock the Alignment Off
Unfortunately, it can be pretty easy to knock your wheels out of alignment. Generally, the wheels need to be realigned annually or every two years at a maximum. This being said, if you knock your wheels out of alignment before this time, they will need to be realigned at that point.
Everybody has knocked their wheels out of alignment. It’s nothing to be ashamed of. The ways you can knock your wheels out of alignment include
- Automobile accidents
- Driving over bumps too fast
- Flying through road construction zones
- Hitting parking space markers
- Flying over speed bumps
- Driving through potholes too fast
As you can see, you deal with many of these road hazards in your daily driving. If you are approaching a large bump, construction zone, or pothole, it’s important to slow down regardless of the rush you are in or the drivers behind you are in. Aside from knocking your wheels out of alignment, road hazards can also damage your vehicle’s suspension.
Signs Your Wheel Alignment Is Off
As we mentioned above, one sign that your wheel alignment is off is a crooked steering wheel logo. This is an indication that the wheels are not pointing straight as they are supposed to. Consequently, this will also cause your vehicle to pull or drift to one side while you are driving straight.
Del Hatt Automotive in Poughkeepsie, NY, would be happy to align your wheels if they need it. Call us today to set up an appointment.