Balincing Wheels vs Aligment

(Wheel balancing or tire balancing) and tire alignment is two different services that can fix inconsistencies your vehicle develops over time. Tire balancing corrects an unevenness in your tires, which is commonly caused over time by tread wear. Tire balance and rotation is recommended every 3,000-6,000 miles or 6 months or when you experience unusual vibration.

Tire alignment corrects the angle of your wheels by adjusting your vehicle’s suspension. This helps maintain proper tread wear and precise steering. Your tire alignment should be checked annually, or when you notice abnormal tire wear, a crooked steering wheel, or a drift in the steering system.

Should I Drive On A Flat Tire?

No. Do not drive on a flat tire.

However, it may be necessary to travel a short distance on a flat tire when pulling over to the side of the road. But driving on a flat tire is a surefire way to put your passengers at risk and seriously damage your vehicle. Not only does driving on a flat tire dangerously decrease your vehicle’s handling, but it may also cause structural damage to the wheel, brakes, alignment, and potentially other components like your suspension and steering system. It may be tempting to “limp” your car to the nearest repair shop, but by driving on a flat, you’ll likely end up paying to repair much more than just the tire.

So if you’re not supposed to drive on a flat, what should you do instead? The first thing to do is safely maneuver to the side of the road so you can address the problem properly. From there, you’ve got a few options.

First, you can either replace the flat with your spare tire or use an emergency sealant to fill any punctures. It’s worth noting, however, that emergency sealants typically only seal tires with punctures that are ¼ inch or smaller. They will not help if your tire is shredded, blown out, or has a large puncture.

How To Avoid Driving On A Flat Tire

The best way to avoid driving on a flat tire is by not getting one in the first place. Here are a few things you can do to minimize the chances of a flat or blown-out tire:

Check Tire Pressure Monthly

The number one rule of tire maintenance is to check your tire pressure regularly. Checking the pressure on all of your tires including the spare at least once monthly. Tire pressure gauges are inexpensive and can help save you from tire trouble down the road.

Be sure to check tire pressure when the tires are “cold,” meaning at least three hours after driving. Not only can driving with underinflated tires lead to lower fuel efficiency, but they are more prone to wear and punctures as well.

Your Tire Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS) may not warn you about low tire pressure until a tire loses a significant amount of air or if all tires are equally low, and visual inspection can be tricky many tires lose as much as half of their pressure before appearing flattered.

It’s best to use a tire pressure gauge to regularly check that your tires are at the manufacturer-recommended pressure (you can find this information in your owner’s manual or inside the driver-side door jamb).

Inspect & Rotate Tires Regularly

Along with checking your tire pressure monthly, visually inspect and rotate your tires as well. Tire rotations help spread out the wear on your tires to help them last longer. In general, you should try to rotate your tires every 5,000 to 10,000 miles. As a good rule of thumb, plan to have your tires rotated each time you get your oil changed.

It’s also smart to visually inspect your tires regularly for tread wear and signs of damage. Tires should have a minimum of 3/32 inches of tread depth to be safe and should be free from cracking bulging sidewalls, or bubbles.

Don’t Surpass The Tire Load Limit

Along with the recommended tire pressure, tires also have a maximum load rating and maximum pressure printed on the sidewall. Heavier loads put more strain on your tires, and exceeding their load limit could lead to a tire blowout.

Always be mindful of how much weight you are loading your car with and, if necessary, increase your tire pressure to handle the increased weight, but do not exceed the maximum tire pressure.

Watch For Road Hazards

Potholes, nails, pieces of glass roadways are filled with potential hazards for your tires! While driving, watch for Potholes and large road debris that can damage your tires without actually puncturing them, but may cause cuts and bulges that could lead to flat, critical tire damage or vibrations later on.

Equip Your Vehicle With Run-flat Tires

Whether you like it or not, flats just happen sometimes. There’s no way to spot every stray nail or piece of glass on the road before it punctures your tire. For those who like to be prepared, run-flat tires provide a convenient solution to the inevitable flat.

Run-flats tires are self-supporting in the event of sudden tire pressure loss. With reinforced sidewalls and cutting-edge bead technology, these tires can support the weight of your vehicle for up to 50 miles and up to 50 MPH after a puncture. Run-flat tires give you the peace of mind to know you and your family won’t be stranded on the side of the road if you get a flat.

Smaller Tires: What Are The Pros?

While some drivers plus size their wheels or install taller tires for a big, bold look, other drivers may want to put smaller tires on their vehicle for cost or aesthetic reasons. Smaller tires may seem like a smart choice, but can your car or truck handle smaller tires? Learn about the pros and cons associated with putting smaller tires on your car or truck and why it’s best to stick to your certain cases, smaller tires can provide less sidewall roll when turning a sharp corner, offer better handling, improved traction, and allow more torque to be transmitted to the ground since the wheels are smaller in diameter.

Since smaller tires spin faster, they require higher engine RPMs than larger tires when driving at the same speed. Additionally, smaller tires may directionally provide more towing power than larger tires since they may transfer more of their torque to the ground, but the engine may spin faster and run hotter trying to stay at that speed.

Smaller tires can boost the aesthetic of your vehicle by lowering your car to the road. However, equipping your car or truck with smaller tires for aesthetic purposes may alter the performance of your vehicle.

Smaller Tires: What Are The Cons?

Unless your vehicle’s manufacturer specifies an option for smaller tires, making the change to smaller tires may not be in your best interest.

Making the change to smaller tires may require a lowering kit or springs, arms, brackets, stabilizing bars, and shocks. With all of these modifications, you may be looking at interference with your car’s sensors and computers plus, a hefty price tag.

Smaller tires can cause inaccurate information from your speedometer and odometer, create transmission shifting issues, cause anti-lock brakes to malfunction, and may even trip your check engine light. Smaller tires can also cause issues with the (ADAS) Advances Driver Assistant System as well as issues with proper alignment.

Smaller tires can make your vehicle ride lower, causing the vehicle to scrape, collide with, or bottom out on items that it should otherwise clear think speed bumps, entrances into parking lots, rough intersections, and roadway debris.

Additionally, the added torque from smaller wheels could cause your tires to age and wear out sooner since they’re rotating faster and engaging with the pavement more per mile than a manufacturer-recommended tire size would. Likewise, if the overall tire diameter remains the same but the rim size is smaller, you need to be careful to ensure vehicle hardware like brake rotors and calipers still have clearance so the wheel can rotate.

Why You Need Properly Balanced Tires?

Correctly balanced wheels don’t just keep you driving smoothly; they also reduce noise, vibration, and premature tread wear. If you feel you have unbalanced tires, or your handling feels off, stop in and let us check your wheel balance.

How to Tell if Tires Need Balancing:
• Your steering wheel vibrates at highway speeds.
• You feel your seat or floorboard vibrating at highway speeds.
• You notice scalloped or cupped wear patterns on your tires.

What’s included when we do tire balance?

Our routine tire and wheel balancing service helps keep your vehicle running smoothly and confidently by ensuring that your tires are spinning as evenly as possible. Our service includes:
• Removing all of your tires and wheels
• Mounting and balancing each wheel using state-of-the-art equipment
• Spinning each wheel to make sure the weight of the wheel and tire are balanced evenly around the axle
• Detecting, locating and removing any imbalances
• Carefully replacing the wheels on your car

How Important is Balancing Your Tires?

The wear on your tires’ treads from your day-to-day driving causes changes in the distribution of vehicle weight around the wheel.

A wheel balance carefully performed by one of our expert technicians can help return equilibrium and aid in decreasing any vibration you might feel in your steering wheel, seat, or floorboard. It also helps in proper tread wear and a longer life for your tires.

How Often Should You Balance Your Tires?

We recommend you have your wheels balanced every 3,000–6,000 miles, but it’s always a good idea to check your owner’s manual for a more specific recommendation.

Why is a Tire Rotation Important?

Your tires may wear differently, depending on their position on your vehicle, your driving style, and the condition of your suspension. This uneven wear can lead to poor performance and decreased mileage. Rotating your tires helps distribute tire wear more evenly, leading to better mileage and maximized traction on all four wheels.

What does it mean to Rotate Tires?

All four tires of your vehicle are the only parts touching the ground. Having your tires rotated helps to prolong the tire’s tread life by promoting more uniform tread wear on all four tires. Routine rotations will also help to have the four tires be replaced at once, rather than in a pair at different times. The key is having the front tires match the rear tires which will help the tire’s handling when driving.

How Often Do Tires Need Rotated?

Tire rotation is a routine maintenance service that should be performed every 3,000 to 6,000 miles.

What’s included when doing a tire rotation?

First, our tire technicians will carefully evaluate the position of your tires and the wear they’ve sustained to determine if it’s time for a rotation.

If based on our recommendation, you decide on a rotation, our next step will be to help preserve the life of your tires with a service that includes:
• Removing your tires
• Carefully inspecting their tread-wear patterns
• Rotating your tires to the positions recommended by your vehicle manufacturer
• Inflate tires to specifications
• Resetting your tire-pressure monitoring system (TPMS) as needed this an important step because the vehicle will alert you when a tire is low on air and it will also let you which one.

When, why and how to check tire pressure

Signs You May Want to Have Your Tire Pressure Checked:
• Your tire makes squealing noises when you turn.
• Your tire looks deflated and more rounded on the sides.
• Your tire pressure monitoring system light is on.

What’s Included with a Tire Pressure Check?

We’ll check the pressure of all four tires on your vehicle completely free of charge. This includes:
• Checking for under- or over-inflated tires
• Inspecting your tires for signs of pressure-related damage, such as leaks or premature tread wear.
• Returning your tire pressure to a PSI that meets your vehicle manufacturer’s recommendations

Why is it Important to Maintain Proper Tire Air Pressure?

Making sure your tires are inflated properly is important for several reasons. Proper inflation helps:
• Improve safety and handling
• Increase fuel economy
• Decrease tread wear
• Reduce braking distance
• Reduce harmful emissions

How Often Should I Check Tire Pressure?

We recommend that you come in for a check if your tire pressure monitoring system light comes on when you start your vehicle, if your tires feel unusually soft, once a month or if you notice a decrease in fuel efficiency.

How Do I Know I Need My Tire Pressure Sensors Checked?

• TPMS Light: The tire pressure light illuminates when the car is started and stays on while driving
• Low Tire Pressure: The vehicle’s tire pressure is frequently low regardless of outside temperature
• TPMS Reset: The TPMS Light was not reset during a recent service appointment

What’s Included in our TPMS Light and Sensor Service?

A tire pressure monitoring system is an electronic device used to monitor the air pressure inside a vehicle’s tires. As part of our TPMS service, our tire technicians will:
• Perform a systems test on all of your sensors to see if they’re in working order,
• Help ensure your tires are the proper tire air pressure,
• Perform a tire pressure sensor replacement or a TPMS reset of any malfunctioning sensors, and,
• Discuss any additional recommended repairs you may wish to make, and any costs involved.

What is a TPMS Sensor and What Does it Do?

A functional tire pressure monitoring system plays an important role in making sure that your car is working properly and that you and your loved ones get and home from your favorite destination.

Benefits of a TPMS check include helping to:
• Improve vehicle safety and handling
• Decrease premature tread wear
• Maximize fuel economy
• Reduce CO2 emissions
• Reduce braking distance

When Should I Have my Tire Pressure Sensors Checked?

If you feel your tire pressure is low, or if your TPMS light comes on and stays on, it means your tire pressure has dropped 25% or more below your manufacturer’s prescribed level. We recommend that you visit us at your earliest convenience.

Understanding the Tire Pressure Monitoring System

You’re not alone if you’re confused about what the TPMS symbol means. In fact, 49% of younger drivers and 39% of overall drivers were unable to recognize the TPMS warning symbol in the survey of more than 1,000 U.S. drivers.

What Are All-weather Tires?

As their name suggests, all-weather tires enable you to drive in all weather conditions. The tread patterns of all-weather tires offer excellent stability and traction. Additionally, the specialized rubber in these tires allows them to remain flexible in a variety of conditions. For instance, these tires are designed to grip wet, dry, and snowy roads.

Winter Tires Vs. All-season Tires

By comparison, winter tires which supply additional stability and traction are designed for snowy and icy roads. Meanwhile, all-season tires deliver versatile performance in various conditions, such as wet and mildly wintry conditions. All-season tires aren’t geared toward driving in extreme snow, ice, and cold, while all-weather tires offer a happy medium between the extra traction of winter tires and the versatility of all-season tires!

Although you’d think they’d be the same, all-weather and all-season tires aren’t twins. All-weather tires are typically better equipped to handle snow and ice than all-season tires, while winter tires are best designed for only snow and icy conditions.

Are All-weather Tires Better Than All-season Tires?

So, are all-weather tires better that all-season tires? It depends on where you drive. If you live and drive someplace where winter is harsher, all-weather tires are typically a better choice than all-season tires. But if you live in a milder climate, all-season tires may be the right fit.

Another benefit is that all-weather tires offer versatility in places where the weather can be wintry one day and spring-like just a day later. They are an ideal balance between winter and all-season tires, and they typically last longer than either winter or summer tires.

What Is Tpms? Tire Position Monitor System

TPMS is a system in your vehicle designed to notify you when your tires are under-inflated. This early-warning system can help save you from having flat tires or running on a flat tire, reduced fuel economy, poor handling performance, and even irreparable tire damage and failure.TPMS will either use sensors in the wheels that are connected to the valve stems or sensors banded in each wheel well. The sensors measure inflation in each tire and send that information to the computer in your car. If the tire pressure reads too low, the TPMS light on your dashboard will illuminate to notify you of a tire’s low pressure.

What Does The Tpms Light Mean?

The tire pressure monitoring system light, shaped like a horseshoe with an exclamation point in the middle, normally means that you have a tire with low pressure. If you see the TPMS light illuminated, it’s best to stop driving and check the air pressure in each tire. Ensure they are inflated to proper specifications. You can find this number in the door jamb of your vehicle or in the owner’s manual. There are a few different ways your TPMS light can alert you.

Tpms Light Turns On While Driving

If the TPMS light turns on while driving and doesn’t turn off, it probably means that one or more of your tires are low on pressure. If the light comes on and stays on, it’s best to pull over and check the air pressure in your tires.

Tpms Keeps Turning On And Off

A change in the outside temperature can affect the air pressure in your tires. For instance, an unusually , which could in turn trigger your TPMS light.

Tpms Light Flashes And Then Stays On

Every time you start your car, you may notice all of the lights on your dashboard illuminate and then turn off. But if your TPMS light flashes and then stays on after you’ve started the car, it means it’s time to get your TPMS system checked. This usually indicate a malfunction in the system for example a bad tire sensor. We recommend bring in it to the shop and one of technicians will check it out for you.

Why Does My Car Need An Alignment?

When potholes, curbs, and even routine road wear knock your car wheels out of alignment, the results can range from the subtle (tires that wear prematurely) to dramatic (poor vehicle handling).

When Should You Get an Alignment?
• Your tires or tread are worn on one edge the surest sign of misaligned wheels.
• Your vehicle pulls left or right when you’re cruising a straight, smooth road.
• Your steering wheel shimmies, feels loose, or is hard to turn.
• Your tires begin to squeal when turning.
• When your vehicle is trying to go to one side while trying drive straight.
• We recommend alignment check on every oil change to make sure is within specifications.

These are few of the Benefits that your vehicle will have with a good alignment.

Fuel Efficiency

Misalignment can decrease gas mileage by up to 10%. Instead of rolling freely, misaligned tires drag this causes engine to overcome that force needed to move vehicle. That means if your tires aren’t adjusted properly, you could be spending more money on gas. A wheel alignment could help you conserve fuel and fill up less often.

Smoother Ride

When your tires are out of alignment, your vehicle tends to pull the side right or left, leading to a jarring, bumpy, or even vibration-filled ride. A wheel alignment smooths out your ride and contributes to a better behind-the-wheel experience.

Improves Steering

If your car’s wheels are out of alignment, it’s harder to steer. You may even find yourself holding the steering wheel at an awkward angle to drive the car straight, or veering from side to side. This lack of control increases your likelihood of being involved in an accident. Proper wheel alignment means you’re able to steer clear of those problems and maintain stable control of your car.

Fewer Auto Repairs

If your tires are misaligned, a little jolt could lead to big problems. Hitting a pothole, for example, can cause way more damage to your tires and suspension system with a bad alignment. Spending a small amount of money on a wheel alignment can prevent you from shelling out big bucks for bigger auto repairs down the road.

Longerlasting Tires

Misalignment may lead to premature and uneven tire wear. If you wait to get a wheel alignment until it’s too late, you could find yourself buying new tires more frequently.

What Are Some Misalignment Issues I Can Remedy Myself?

Well, let’s put your skills to work and do some solving. Even if everything feels right, and no symptoms are present, there are some more alignment issues that you can remedy yourself.

• If you have too much weight loading down your back end, that lowers your vehicle height, throwing off your alignment. Remove what you don’t need, and make sure to have your alignment check since your alignment can’t adjust itself.
• Maintain correct air pressure in your tires.
• Embrace conservative driving. It will place less strain on steering and suspension components which are key to maintaining proper alignment.

Why Is A Wheel Alignment Important?

When your wheels are out of alignment, your tires aren’t pointing in the right direction. This will affect your steering and suspension, but more importantly, it could affect your safety and the durability of your tires and all the parts controlling them.

How Do Vehicles Go Off Wheel Alignment?

It doesn’t take much, that’s for sure. There are many ways for your car go off its alignment. You’ll be familiar with most of the causes, but what you probably didn’t think was that each one could do quite a number on your vehicle’s alignment.

Wheel alignment can be thrown off by:
• Potholes
• Hitting the curb
• Mechanical wear on suspension or steering components.
• Bumping into concrete parking stalls
• Flat tire or under inflated.
• Fair wear and tear as vehicles age, rubber components start cracking or lose their elasticity and ball and socket joints develop looseness. They start to give a little more, progressively getting slightly worse over time.

What Happens If I Don’t Do The Alignment On My Car?

We cringe just thinking of someone never having an alignment performed on his or her vehicle. What will ultimately end up happening is you’ll throw a lot of money down the drain on tires because, without proper alignment, tires wear down a lot faster. Simple as that. And you’ll most likely notice something’s wrong while you’re driving; your vehicle will probably not handle as well as it should and, in the most extreme cases, you could have a pretty difficult time maintaining control of your ride altogether. Did you know? The smartest move is to have your alignment checked every other oil change. Doing so will make your tires last longer and even save on fuel due to vehicle moving straight.

How Often Should I Have My Alignment Checked?

Long live longer tire life. We recommend an Alignment Check with every other oil change. A lot happens over the course of 6,000 miles. You drive through potholes, travel down gravely stretches of road, or worse, knock your wheels on the curb while making a turn. All these things can impact the way your tires sit, throwing off alignment in an instant.

Do Vehicles Have Different Types Of Alignment Specifications?

Every model that rolls off the assembly line has unique alignment specifications. Alignment specs are determined by the vehicle manufacturer for each make and model. The size, length, weight and intended use of the vehicle all play a role in determining the correct alignment angles.

Did you know? We use a special computerized alignment machine pre-loaded with every vehicle’s alignment specifications. Once the vehicle type is determined, the high-tech and precise measuring begin. Upon completion, you’ll receive a printout displaying the vehicle manufacturer’s alignment angle specifications, what your angles are before adjustments were made, and where it stands after adjustments are made.

Most newer vehicles come equipped with Advanced Driver-Assistance Systems (ADAS). These advanced features allow cars to do things like driving themselves, self-park, and emergency brake!

To ensure they work properly, these advanced safety features require special attention. Advanced Driver-Assistance Systems rely on input from a variety of sensors to help them make decisions about the direction and speed of your vehicle. In cars with ADAS, one misaligned wheel or misdirected sensor could cause unnecessary emergency braking, poor self-parking performance, or an outright dangerous situation! many ADAS-enabled vehicle manufacturers recommend a specialized wheel alignment process. However, this information isn’t widely known. Follow along as we go into more detail about ADAS, ADAS alignments, and how they differ from a typical alignment.

What Makes Advanced Driver-assistance Systems Unique?

Advanced Driver-Assistance Systems are vehicle features that utilize computers to assist with the car’s safety and overall driving experience. Sensors, cameras, lasers, and radars fire hundreds of times per second and tell your vehicle’s computer “brain” how to act or react to the conditions around it. For instance, vehicles equipped with Automatic Parking can observe their surroundings and take control of the steering wheel to do the parking job for you.

Does My Car Have Adas?

• Consult your owner’s manual. It might seem like an unnecessary piece of literature, but your owner’s manual is very important. Your vehicle is a sophisticated, two-ton machine, and understanding how to operate it efficiently and effectively is the key to safe driving. It is also the easiest place to find a list of your vehicle’s ADAS features.

• Look around the car. If your vehicle has cameras, it probably has one or multiple ADAS features. Common areas to check are on the tailgate, the bottom of the side view mirrors, on the outside of the rearview mirror, and on the front bumper of the vehicle.

How Is An Adas Vehicle Alignment Different?

A standard wheel alignment is a highly technical process requiring a specialized computer and a skilled technician. Since ADAS vehicles use computerized components to control things like steering, brakes, and cruise control, they require an even more specialized alignment process called a Safety Systems Alignment.

This alignment not only adjusts the three angles of the tire, but it also calibrates the ADAS cameras, sensors, and radar that help control the computerized components. These components rely on proper alignment of the vehicle and they may not function correctly if the vehicle is out of alignment.For instance, some rear camera systems track your wheel angle to display the path your vehicle will travel as you reverse. If the camera isn’t calibrated correctly or the steering wheel is out of alignment, the camera will show an improper image and potentially turn a safety feature into a hazardous situation.
When getting a Safety Systems Alignment, there are a few things to note.

– It requires special equipment. Standard wheel alignment equipment can capture the slightest angle change in a wheel. But to ensure those angles and all the cameras and sensors that rely on them are correct, your wheels need to be aligned and calibrated with high-tech equipment.
– It requires highly skilled technicians. Safety Systems Alignments are done by highly skilled technicians who are trained to know how to calibrate every sensor, camera, radar, or laser your vehicle might have.
– It requires additional time. Since a Safety Systems Alignment involves both a wheel alignment and an ADAS calibration, it takes more time than a standard alignment to ensure everything is on par with the vehicle manufacturer’s specifications.

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