Tire Misalignment: Impacts and What To Look Out For

Tire being realigned after misalignment

Countless factors can affect your vehicle’s ability to safely take you from one part of Vancouver, Washington, to another. Some of these factors are easier to notice than others, but even seemingly insignificant aspects of your car can have a larger impact on your overall driving experience than you might assume. Take wheel alignment, for example: If your vehicle’s tires are improperly aligned by even a fraction of an inch, you could run into all kinds of issues as a direct result.

The best way to deal with tire misalignment is to know how it can affect your car — and what signs to be aware of. Keep reading to learn all about wheel alignment issues and the ways they can affect your vehicle’s performance.

The Causes of Tire Alignment Issues

Wheel alignment problems don’t just have an impact on your vehicle — they’re often the result of an impact to your vehicle. That is to say, hitting curbs and potholes is the most common cause of alignment problems. More severe impacts, such as car crashes and collisions with stationary objects, can also throw your alignment out of whack.

With that in mind, cautious driving can significantly reduce your risk of facing alignment issues in the near future. However, some amount of tire misalignment is an inevitability. That’s because normal wear and tear on your car’s ball-and-socket joints and rubber components will affect your alignment over time.

How Car Alignment Problems Can Impact Your Tires

While there are several bad alignment symptoms you should be aware of, tread wear issues are one of the most notable ways in which poor tire alignment can affect your car. If you haven’t paid attention to your wheel alignment lately, your tires may have developed problems such as:

Camber Wear

If the inside or outside of your treads is far more worn than the center, you’re dealing with camber wear. As you might expect, this is typically the result of a camber misalignment.

Heel/Toe Wear

Has one side of your treads worn out more rapidly than the other in a circumferential direction? If so, your tires have developed heel or toe wear. This issue is easy to spot thanks to its signature sawtooth pattern; however, you should know it can also be caused by underinflation or insufficient tire rotation.


Feathered tires are smooth on one side and sharp on the other. In most cases, this is linked to toe misalignment.

Watch Out for These Bad Alignment Symptoms

Uneven or rapid tread wear is a strong indicator of alignment issues in your vehicle, but this isn’t the only red flag that can point to this problem. Here are some more telltale signs of a bad alignment:

  • Noise, in the form of squealing tires when you turn a corner at a regular speed
  • A steering wheel that vibrates during turns
  • Pulling toward one side of the road while driving
  • A crooked steering wheel on a straight road
  • Reduced vehicle handling when you brake or turn
  • An uptick in problems related to your suspension

Have you spotted any of these issues while driving in Vancouver lately? If so, improper car alignment may be to blame. Make a point of scheduling an appointment at a professional alignment shop in Vancouver. At Gaynor’s, our experienced mechanics will inspect your alignment and make adjustments to bring it back to where it should be.

Schedule Wheel Alignment the Right Way

There’s no denying the fact that misaligned wheels can wreak havoc on your car’s ability to perform as it should. However, wheel alignment issues aren’t always obvious — sometimes, your tires could become misaligned so gradually that it’s all but impossible to notice. Because of that, making tire alignment a part of your vehicle’s maintenance schedule is crucial.

As a basic rule of thumb, it’s wise to check your tire alignment at least once every 6,000 miles (or as part of every other oil change you get). Of course, that’s assuming nothing goes wrong with your vehicle. If you get in a car crash, drive over a pothole, or even just hit a sizable bump in the road, consider getting an alignment check ahead of schedule. And if you haven’t had alignment work in the past year, be sure to take care of this right away.

Get the Best Wheel Alignment Service in Vancouver

By being careful while on the road (and taking other protective measures such as watching your tire inflation), you can go a long way toward preserving your wheel alignment. That said, it’s impossible to keep your tires aligned forever without help. Eventually, your tires will drift out of alignment again — and when that happens, you need a plan to deal with this situation.

If you’re a Vancouver resident, and you’ve just noticed uneven tread wear or a bad alignment noise in your vehicle, consider reaching out to Gaynor’s Automotive. We’re the area’s top choice for alignments and other automotive services thanks to our ASE-certified mechanics, close attention to detail, and unmatched reputation.

When you get an alignment check at your local Gaynor’s shop, our crew will:

  • Measure your current alignment and compare it with your car manufacturer’s guidelines
  • Closely inspect your steering and suspension systems
  • Check your tire wear, inflation, and size

To get a wheel alignment you can trust, schedule an appointment at Gaynor’s Automotive right away!

View Tire Inventory
Professionals You Trust. Service Beyond Expectations.

At Gaynors Automotive, our highest priority is serving our customers. We are 100% committed to you, our valued customer. We strive to make every part of your experience with us hassle-free and pleasant.

Request A Quote