Wheel alignments are one of the most cost effective services you can have performed on your car, truck or SUV. First, it saves on tire wear and we all know how expensive tires are these days. Once that tread has been worn unevenly, nothing can return the rubber that’s been lost. That’s why we recommend a wheel alignment any time you have had your tires replaced so you can get the most value out of your tire investment.
Incorrect wheel alignment can also cause a loss in fuel economy. If the setting known as “toe-in” is incorrect, it causes excessive friction and decreases fuel mileage. This is also a leading cause of excessive tire wear so it’s a double whammy. Signs of wear typically attributed to incorrect alignment is seen as tire wear unevenly across the face of the tire. Look at the tire wear on the inner and the outer edges of the tread. If one side shows more wear than the other, a wheel alignment is definitely the first thing to be checked and adjusted.
If the steering is “pulling” to one side or the other, it is also often a wheel alignment issue. If you let go of the steering wheel while the vehicle is moving, it should stay relatively straight. An immediate drift to the left or the right indicates an issue you should address right away. Besides possibly being an alignment issue, it can also indicate a tire that is experiencing tread separation, a dangerous and possibly deadly condition. Such an issue should not be put off!