EVERYTHING YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT WHEEL ALIGNMENT
Why is a wheel alignment so important?
Picture yourself cruising down the most beautiful road in the world. Now imagine driving down that same road with your wheels pointing the wrong way. Not the most beautiful road in the world anymore.
Alignment is a really complex topic covering a variety of terms and a smorgasbord of parts. When your wheels are out of alignment, your tires aren’t pointing in the right direction. This will affect your steering and suspension, but more importantly, it could affect your safety and the durability of your tires and all the parts controlling them.
Century Tire and Auto in Peabody, MA has all the services for your alignment needs.
Ready for your perfect alignment? So are we. Let us at Century Tire and Auto give a helping hand.
How do vehicles lose their wheel alignment?
It doesn’t take much, that’s for sure. There are many ways for your car to lose its alignment. You’ll be familiar with most of the causes, but what you probably didn’t think was that each one could do quite a number on your vehicle’s alignment.
Wheel alignment can be thrown off by:
Hitting the curb
Bumping into concrete parking stalls
Fair wear and tear — as vehicles age, rubber components start cracking or lose their elasticity and ball and socket joints develop looseness. They start to give a little more, progressively getting slightly worse over time.
Alignment angles are measured in tenths and hundredths of degrees or inches. Over time, a slight misalignment can cause a lot of uneven or premature tire wear. Put your next alignment in the hands of an alignment pro. Call us today.
What happens if I don’t get my wheels aligned?
We cringe just thinking of someone never having an alignment performed on his or her vehicle. What will ultimately end up happening is you’ll throw a lot of money down the drain on tires because, with out proper alignment, tires wear down a lot faster. Simple as that. And you’ll most likely notice something’s wrong while you’re driving; your vehicle will probably not handle as well as it should and, in the most extreme cases, you could have a pretty difficult time maintaining control of your ride altogether. All this bad news is, fortunately for you, easily preventable by having your wheels aligned when needed.
Did you know? The smartest move is to have your alignment checked every other oil change. Doing so will make your tires last longer.
Quick Tip: If your vehicle needs an alignment, ask for a Lifetime Alignment. With this service we’ll align your tires every 6,000 miles or when requested for as long as you own your ride.
How often should I have my alignment checked?
Long live longer tire life. We recommend an Alignment Check with every other oil change. A lot happens over the course of 6,000 miles. You drive through pot holes, travel down gravely stretches of road, or worse, knock your wheels on the curb while making a turn. All these things can impact the way your tires sit, throwing off alignment in an instant.
Did you know? The longer you wait for an alignment, the more damage that can occur. You’d be surprised. If it’s been awhile since your last alignment, it’s time for a checkup.
Do vehicles have different types of alignment specifications?
Every model that rolls off the assembly line has unique alignment specifications. Alignment specs are determined by the vehicle manufacturer for each make and model. The size, length, weight and intended use of the vehicle all play a role in the determining the correct alignment angles.
Did you know? We use a special computerized alignment machine pre-loaded with every vehicle’s alignment specifications. Once the vehicle type is determined, the high tech and precise measuring begins. Upon completion, you’ll receive a print out displaying the vehicle manufacturer’s alignment angle specifications, what your angles are before adjustments were made and where it stands after adjustments are made. At Century Tire and Auto in Peabody, MA we provide alignments for most any vehicle using this special equipment.
Why is it so hard to determine if my car’s alignment is off?
It’s not you, it’s your eyes. We mere humans can’t see in fractions of degrees without technology. It only takes a minuscule amount of misalignment to have a huge impact on tire life. So, signs and symptoms of poor wheel alignment, unfortunately, aren’t always right there staring you in face.
How are alignments different today?
Alignments aren’t different per se, but vehicles are more advanced and precise now than ever before. And at today’s prices we expect more from our rides, that’s for sure. Let’s just say a lot has changed since dad was driving that Oldsmobile. As a result, maintaining the ride and performance that modern vehicles are capable of, a proper alignment must take into account where the rear wheels are pointed.
There’s more vehicle variety on the road these days, too. Vehicles have different purposes. Some have rear steering capabilities. Some have stability controls or dynamic stability controls or active stability management or SAS (Steering Angle Sensors). Every car manufacturer is different and requires different methods to adjust each unique system.
CAR WHEEL ALIGNMENT SERVICES
Without a proper wheel alignment, your fuel economy, tire life and the overall performance of your vehicle can suffer. Century Tire and Auto in Peadbody, MA recommends that a car's wheel alignment be checked every 6,000 miles / 6 months.
At Century Tire and Auto, we perform more than 200 wheel alignments daily. We use computerized wheel alignment technology - which means our camber, caster, toe and thrust angle measurements are extremely precise and accurate.
Come into Century Tire and Auto in Padbody, MA today to have your wheel alignment checked. If our ASE-certified automotive technicians find that you are in need of further wheel alignment services, we offer two options.
STANDARD WHEEL ALIGNMENT SERVICE at Century Tire and Auto in Peadbody, MA
During a standard wheel alignment service, a technician will inspect and/or adjust your vehicle's:
Camber, caster and toe angles (when applicable)
Front and rear steering
Tire wear and tire condition
Tire air pressure
Print out before and after wheel alignment specifications
The auto technician will then align and road test the vehicle. All standard wheel alignment services come with a 12-month / 12,000-mile limited warranty.
4-WHEEL ALIGNMENT SERVICES at Century Tire and Auto in Peadbody, MA.
Firestone Complete Auto Care performs 9,000 wheel alignments every day across the nation, and each one of those 4-wheel alignments improves the accuracy and precision of your vehicle's camber, caster and toe angles. Firestone Complete Auto Care recommends getting your alignment checked every 6 months or 6,000 miles. 4-wheel alignments should be checked at regular intervals.
WHAT HAPPENS DURING A 4-WHEEL ALIGNMENT?
At Century Tire and Auto in Peadbody, MA During a 4-wheel alignment, one of Century Tire and Auto's ASE-certified automotive technicians will use state-of-the-art computerized technology to measure the camber, caster and toe. The technician will then adjust those angles (when applicable) to match vehicle manufacturer specifications, ensuring a smooth ride, even tire wear and efficient fuel economy. A front end alignment and rear end alignment will be completed during a 4-wheel alignment service.
Every 4-wheel alignment at Century Tire and Auto includes inspection of your car's front and rear steering and suspension components. During every wheel alignment, a Century Tire and Auto technician will also verify tire size and adjust tire air pressure.
WHY DO CAMBER, CASTER, AND TOE ANGLES NEED ADJUSTMENT?
Every wheel has camber, caster and toe angles - when they are correctly aligned, your car drives straight. When the camber, caster and toe angles are misaligned, wheel alignment problems can arise. Your vehicle can pull to the left or right or your tires can wear unevenly. At a basic level, the camber angle, caster angle and toe angle keeps your tires, steering and overall vehicle driving straight and even.
STEERING WHEEL SHAKES AND PULLS?
Does your car pull to one side of the road? Are you tires wearing irregularly or prematurely? Has your steering wheel shifted position? All of these are symptoms of wheel alignment problems. Misaligned wheels and suspension will lead to faster tire wear, poor fuel economy and overall decreased vehicle performance.
Wheel alignment problems can be the result of:
Driving over a pothole
Running into a curb
Normal use over time
Wheel alignment problems can be solved with a wheel alignment service at Century Tire and Auto in Peadbody, MA. It's not easy driving around with a shifted steering wheel or a car that pulls to one side. If you wait to get a wheel alignment, your tires may need replacement sooner and your fuel economy can suffer. Avoid additional expense and time by dealing with a wheel alignment problem at the first sign of trouble. Contact Century Tire and Auto today and find out what our ASE-certified tire and automotive professionals can do for you!