Misaligned wheels are one of the most common problems after an accident. It can happen even during a low-speed impact, after hitting a curb, or after hitting a pothole. You may not even have other visible damage but could still have alignment problems.
It’s important to watch for the signs that your car might need a wheel alignment so you can get it taken care of as soon as possible.
Shaky Steering Wheel
You might feel your steering wheel shake back and forth or vibrate while driving. This may be especially noticeable at high speeds. One or more of the tires could be trying to go in different directions, with the steering wheel trying to accommodate for it.
Another sign you may need an alignment is that the vehicle may pull or drift to one side. If you have to fight to keep it going in the right direction, you don’t have full control over the vehicle.
It might show up as a very noticeable hard pulling, where you need to hold the steering wheel at an odd position to keep it aligned. Or it could be soft pulling where the care glides gently to one side.
Off-Center Steering Wheel
If the logo in the middle is crooked and it hasn’t ever been removed, your steering wheel is not centered. This is usually a sign that the wheels are out of alignment and should be fixed as soon as possible.
Uneven Tread Wear
Your tires’ tread should wear evenly. You may notice more wear on one side of the tread blocks if they aren’t wearing evenly. Or, the tread on one tire could wear differently than the tire on the opposite side of the car. This would require a wheel alignment to fix the problem.
If You Don’t Get an Alignment
If your wheels are not aligned, you can face several problems that can have serious consequences for your vehicle. Your tires can have premature wear. This means you may have to replace them thousands of miles earlier than normal.
In addition, your fuel economy may be reduced, leading you to spend more on gas. Your steering system may face additional strain, causing components to wear out earlier than they should. Some of these components can be expensive to replace.
Finally, you may not be able to control the vehicle as well as you need to. This can create a dangerous situation that could lead to accidents and injuries.
How to Fix Wheel Alignment Problems
Because unbalanced alignment is such a serious problem, it’s important that you get your vehicle into a repair shop right away after an accident. A professional will be able to fix your car to the manufacturer’s specifications for alignment for your model.
Plus, wheel alignment is not something you can do by yourself. A good professional will have access to the proper equipment, such as unibody alignment equipment. You’ll know your vehicle is in good hands.
Spot the Signs
By keeping an eye on signs that your car needs a wheel alignment after an accident, you’ll be able to get the problem taken care of right away. This can help prevent further damage and even dangerous situations.
If you spot any of these signs, call Limerick Auto Body right away to get your car back up to speed.