Ways to Help Your Vehicle Maintain Proper Alignment in Vancouver

vehicle alignment being performed

Every driver in Vancouver, Washington, knows auto maintenance is crucial, but tire alignment is an underappreciated element of this process. The consequences of driving on misaligned wheels can be disastrous — even if said wheels are only out of place by a fraction of an inch. To put this in perspective, driving 12,000 miles on tires with a toe misalignment of 3/16 of an inch is equivalent to dragging those tires sideways for 68 miles.

It is imperative to get regular wheel alignment service for your vehicle, especially if this task hasn’t been a key part of your maintenance schedule in the past. Considering the potential damage that unaligned wheels can do, your relatively small wheel balancing and alignment cost will pay for itself over and over again. Still, prioritizing this work isn’t the only way you can preserve your tire alignment. There is much to know when it comes to tire alignment services, and our auto repair shops in Vancouver are here to help!

Here’s How You Can Protect Your Wheel Alignment 

You can’t avoid tire alignment service forever — eventually, everyday wear and tear will bring your wheels out of alignment. But you can (and should) attempt to keep your vehicle correctly aligned for as long as possible. While driving in Vancouver, be sure to:

Avoid Excessive Weight

Your vehicle’s alignment relies on its tire angles, which can vary, based on the height of your car’s chassis. While you might not think this differs from one day to the next, carrying too many heavy objects in the back of your vehicle can actually lower its height (affecting your alignment in the process). Dealing with this issue is simple — if you have anything in your car that doesn’t need to be there, take it out.

Drive Carefully

The various parts that make up your car’s steering and suspension systems are responsible for keeping your tires aligned. If you make a conscious effort to drive more conservatively, you’ll put less strain on these systems and help your tires stay in great shape.

Steer Clear of Road Hazards

While you should never actively try to drive over obstacles in the road, you may not know that collisions and other forms of impact can severely affect your alignment. In fact, hitting potholes, curbs, and debris is the single most common source of alignment issues.

Watch Your Tire Inflation

Along with excess weight, underinflated tires can alter the height of your vehicle’s chassis. Regularly checking your tire pressure is an easy way to avoid this problem.

Schedule a Wheel Alignment Service Appointment

Why Does Tire Alignment Matter?

Even though wheel alignment might not sound like a critical car maintenance task, it’s more than worth paying attention to. When you focus on tire alignment, you’ll benefit from:

  • Improved steering. Car alignment issues can affect your steering wheel and make it harder to drive in other ways. By keeping your wheels in alignment, you can sidestep this issue.
  • Even tire wear. Tires that aren’t aligned correctly won’t wear at an even rate. Helping your tires wear correctly will extend their lifespan while improving your fuel usage.
  • Reduced vehicle expenses. Despite the costs associated with wheel balancing and alignment, cost savings can come from this work, too. In addition to the previously mentioned improvements to mileage, keeping up with this service can help you avoid pricey steering and suspension repairs.
  • A safer driving experience. If your tires are misaligned and wearing at different rates, they aren’t safe to drive on. On the other hand, correctly aligned tires will enhance your vehicle’s handling and provide additional safety benefits.

Look Out for These Car Alignment Red Flags

Sometimes, it’s easy to know when you need wheel alignment — if you haven’t had this service  done for a year or more, it’s time to schedule it again. But even if you follow a regular schedule for alignment work, you should take care of this job early if you notice warning signs like:

  • An uptick in problems related to your suspension
  • Squealing tires while turning corners, even at regular speeds
  • A steering wheel that’s crooked while you drive on straight roads
  • Vibrations in your steering wheel when you turn
  • Vehicle handling issues while turning or braking
  • Abnormally fast or uneven tread wear
  • Your car pulling right or left while driving

Don’t ignore any of these symptoms — they can make it impossible for you to drive safely. The minute you spot any of these problems in your vehicle, visit a nearby auto shop to resolve the issue.

Get Vancouver’s Best Tire Alignment Service

As is clear, nothing can replace regular alignment work when it comes to keeping your tires at the right angles on your car. But you can reduce the frequency of needing this service by taking a few common sense steps.

When you’re ready for tire alignment work, you’ll want to be sure to pick Vancouver’s best shop for this job. To know you’re selecting a qualified Washington business to provide this service, look for shops with ASE-certified mechanics, multiple locations in the city, and money-saving opportunities like online coupons. Your tire shop of choice should also be able to provide other tire-related services, like wheel balancing and tire rotation

To benefit from all these perks and more, schedule a wheel alignment at Gaynor’s Automotive today!

Schedule a Wheel Alignment Service Appointment

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