The importance of wheel alignment cannot be overstated. How your European automobile’s wheels are aligned not only determines how well you can control your vehicle but also how long your tires last. Uptown Imports aligns wheels for our customers whenever they need it. Generally, the rule of thumb is every two years or when you get a new set of tires. This said, you can knock your wheels out of alignment prematurely, and if you do so, you’ll notice one or more of the following four signs below.
Pulling means that your vehicle sways to the right or left when you are driving straight. The best way to check for pulling is to drive on a flat surface. Make sure there is no one around and that the surface is smooth and free of debris. Start driving forward slowly. Let go of your steering wheel for a few seconds. If your vehicle begins to drift to the right or left, the automobile is pulling because the alignment is off.
2. Rapid Tread Wear
Another sign that your vehicle’s alignment is off is how your tire tread wears down. If you have uneven or premature tire tread wear, this could be caused by the wheel alignment. Wheels that are not aligned properly do not meet the road evenly. As such, you will notice patchy tire tread wear that may look like feathers or scallop shells. This reduces the lifespan you will get out of the set of tires on your car.
3. Crooked Steering Wheel
Your European automobile is designed to go straight unless you turn it otherwise. An easy way to tell whether your wheels are aligned is by looking at the manufacturer’s logo on the center of the steering wheel. The logo should always be straight when your wheels are pointed straight. If it is crooked, the wheel alignment is off and needs to be adjusted to help increase your ability to control your automobile.
4. Tire Squeal
As we mentioned above, wheel alignment affects how well your tires grip the road. If your tire tread is not firmly gripping the road while you drive, the tires will not only bounce and give you the uneven tread wear discussed above, but they might also squeal. Squealing tires are a sign of a misaligned vehicle or wheels that are out of balance. It is also a sign that your tire tread is too low. All are problematic.
Stop by or call Uptown Imports in Minneapolis, MN, today for a wheel alignment. We’ll also check the tire tread and make sure your wheels are balanced.