To prevent vibration, skidding, noise, and wear, wheel alignment inspection is necessary. Learn about useful information regarding wheel alignment and how to perform an inspection.
The Importance of Wheel Alignment
The purpose of wheel alignment is to adjust front-wheel handling while driving. If wheel alignment is off, tire life is shortened while car and mileage performance also decrease.
Types of Wheel Alignment
Definition of Caster is the angle created by steering axis and vertical line to the ground when viewed from the side. Caster is positive if the axis is angled backward, and negative if forward. Typically, positive caster will make the vehicle more stable at high speeds.
Definition of Camber is the angle created by steering axis and vertical line to the ground when viewed from the front or rear. If the top of the tire is farther out than the bottom (that is, away from the axle), it is called positive camber; if the bottom of the tire is farther out than the top, it is called negative camber; if the tire stands perfectly vertical, it is called neutral camber.
With the development of suspension and vehicle technology, most vehicles today have negative camber, which increases outer tire’s contact area and provides stable cornering performance.
Definition of Tod is the angle created by tire direction and vehicle direction when viewed from the upper. If the tire’s front is inward, it’s called Toe-in; if outward, called Toe-out. Too much toe-out usually causes fast wear on tire’s inner surface of tread. And Too much toe-in causes fast wear on outer surface of tread in reverse. Both cases results in worse riding comfort and less fuel efficiency.
When to Check Wheel Alignment
The inspection is required
- After a car accident.
- After tire replacement.
- when there is uneven wear on a shoulder.
- when the steering wheel is unstable and/or vibrating
- when riding is uncomfortable or fuel efficiency gets worse