In this article you will learn how to check wheel alignment at home, yes i mean at home without paying any consultation fee. Wheel balance or alignment is the process of adjusting your suspension back to its factory settings.
This help your car tires stay longer in shape and a good wheel balance means a better road experience. Wheel balance will help your car tires balance well on the proper angles they are supposed to while driving on the road.
In a north shell wheel alignment also called wheel balancing or breaking is a part of automobile maintenance which involves adjusting the angles of wheels as required by the manufacturer. The primary reason why wheel balance is done is to improve the vehicle’s tire life span and vehicle travel is straight and true.
Can You do an alignment at home?
Can you Do an alignment at home, yes you can do your car’s alignment at home this all depends on you. Your kind of person matters a lot when it comes to doing your wheel alignment at home.
If you are the kind that is ready to get your hands dirty and do your auto jobs your self then you can do it following some simple guides. This is true in many respects, but some alignment specs are easy to check yourself, and toe is one aspect of alignment that can be checked at home.
Read Also:- Do i Need an Alignment After Replacing Tires
Common signs you need wheel alignment
- Uneven or Rapid tire wear In a normal condition, your car should travel in a straight line without any form of struggles with the road. This is not the case when the alignment is out and your car tire are not hitting the road in the proper angle. This is a very evident sign that you can take note of all by you self at home without consultation. After a long drive park your car on a flat even platform and take a good look at the tires if you notice a rapid wear than it should, you need a wheel balance.
- Crooked steering wheel when driving straight This is another very evident sign of a wheel alignment you can check at home by your self or on your way to work. In general sense, when driving on a straight road, the steering wheel is supposed to remain calm and steady. The opposite of steady happens when your car is out of alignment or needs wheel balancing. When driving on a straight load the steering wheels are said to make irregular movements or crooked movement. This crooked movements makes it almost not possible for the car to drive straight on a straight road. The crooked movement of the steering becomes even more evident when the driving on a moderate to high speed.
- Noisy steering The steering begins to make unusual noise and sounds. This sign starts to show up when the case becomes worst. A noisy steering wheel is among the last bad signs that even a non observant driver will notice. This noisy steering wheel sound is so evident even passengers would be able to hear and know that something is actually making noise in the car.
- Steering unusual pulling to the right and left This applies to the crooked steering wheels experience too. When the wheel alignment is out, you start to experience difficulty in driving straight. The steering wheels starts to need more of your attention as the wheels starts pulling to the right and left.
- Squealing tires The last sign is a squealing tires. A squealing tire makes it feel as if you are trying a burnout like a stunt car driver but no, in this case it means your car’s alignments is out.
All of the above mentioned signs and symptoms are indicators you can check to know if your car needs alignment. If you notice you car is showing of the above mentioned signs and symptoms then it means you need a wheel alignment check or wheel alignment balance.
How to check wheel alignment at home by yourself
Checking of wheel balance can actually be done at home without the help of a professional. This can be done easily by following some simple steps and using some equipment.
In general sense, all the four wheels should be vertical to the ground and parallel to each other. But as a result of some road experience, probably hitting a road bump hard , the alignment could go off.
When the alignment goes off the car’s wheel stops driving the way it supposed to. normally the next step for most drivers after such experience is to go for wheel alignment.
If you want to learn how to check wheel alignment at home by yourself then the next step is for you. Follow the guide below to begin your wheel balance check the toe
- park the vehicle on level ground
- Makes sure tires are straight ahead and the steering wheel centered
- Jack up one of the front tires
- secure the vehicle on jack stands
- Then spray-paint a stripe on the tread while spinning the tire
- Keep your hand steady as possible
- Measure from line to line with the tape level with the floor
- Measure again on the back sides of the tires
- Make sure that the tape is level
- Compare the two measurements to reveal the toe
- If the steering wheel is already centered
- adjust the tie-rods on each side the same amount
- Roll the vehicle back and forth several feet a few times
- Re-measure the toe
- Repeat this step until the toe is within spec
- Torque the adjuster-sleeve nuts to factory specs to complete the adjustment
After you have successfully done and completed all the above steps and procedures move to the Camber. Camber measures the tire lean.
Camber isn’t adjustable on many front-wheel-drive cars, and an out-of-spec measurement usually indicates bent or worn part(s) on these vehicles. To check camber, make sure the vehicle is parked on level ground.
If not, factor the ground slope into the camber reading. Then place a straight edge across the wheel (use the inner lip if the outer is nicked or uneven) and use an angle finder to reveal camber.
Can I drive my car if it needs an alignment?
The simple answer to this question can i drive my car if i needs and alignment is Yes you can drive but. If you continue driving your car when it needs wheel alignment, you stand the chance of wearing off your tires in no time.
Another thing that could happen is that your will start giving you a wrong fuel mileage as it is not a a balanced wheels. The only condition where you can enjoy driving your car with and off wheel alignment is on the ice.