You just purchased four brand-new tires, which means your vehicle is set to keep rolling for at least the next two or three years. Or maybe not.
If your wheels are not in alignment, your brand new tires will not last as long as expected. An alignment ensures your vehicle’s wheels are perpendicular to the road and parallel to each other. Misalignment, therefore, leads to uneven wear on your tires and more frequent replacements.
Experts recommend checking your vehicle’s alignment every 6,000 miles or so. You might not need an alignment that often, but it’s a good idea to at least let a trusted mechanic check things out for you.
You might want to head to a local, trusted mechanic immediately if you notice any of the following:
- While driving on a straight and level roadway, your car or truck pulls to the left or right.
- You have trouble keeping your car on the road.
- Your tires are wearing unevenly; there’s more tread on one side than the other.
- Your steering wheel vibrates.
“You should have your alignment checked if you hit something in the road, “Running into a curb or running over a pothole might not seem like much, but something like that could throw your wheels out of alignment.”
There are several benefits to having your wheels properly aligned:
- This is the most important reason to make sure your wheels are aligned. Obviously, if you can’t keep your vehicle on the road, you’re a danger to yourself and others. Also, if your tires are not wearing evenly, it will be more difficult to stop safely, especially on wet, snow-packed or icy roads.
- Smoother ride. Properly aligned wheels are the key to a more comfortable ride. You’ll immediately notice the difference in your vehicle’s handling and stability.
- Better gas mileage.If your wheels aren’t aligned, uneven pressure on the tires will cause friction against the surface of the road, forcing your vehicle’s engine to work harder and use more fuel. Less resistance from the road means better gas mileage.
- Longer lasting tires.As previously stated, misalignment causes uneven wear on your tires, which means you’ll have to replace them more often.
A lot of people think that the tire manufacturer covers everything. You should remember, however, that warranties don’t cover effects that are the result of poor maintenance.0