Tyre Care: Wheel Balancing and Wheel Alignment

When it comes to taking care of your tyres, there are two important tasks to remember: wheel balancing and wheel alignment. They both help keep your tyres and your car in good shape. Wheel balancing makes sure your tyres don’t wobble or shake, while wheel alignment makes sure your wheels point in the right direction. In this blog post, we’ll talk about these two tasks and why they’re important for keeping you safe on the road.

What is wheel balancing?

Wheel balancing is a process that makes sure your car’s wheels and tyres spin smoothly without any wobbling or shaking. When your wheels are out of balance, it can cause vibrations in your car, especially when you’re driving at higher speeds.

During wheel balancing, a technician places small weights on the rim of your tyre to even out any weight imbalances. This helps distribute the weight of the tyre and wheel assembly evenly around the axle, allowing it to rotate smoothly.

If your wheels are not balanced correctly, it can lead to uneven tyre wear, which means you’ll have to replace your tyres more often. It can also affect your car’s handling and performance, making it harder to control, especially on bumpy roads or at high speeds.

Regular wheel balancing helps delivering a more comfortable ride, reduces tyre wear, and improves overall safety on the road. It’s recommended to have your wheels balanced every time you get new tyres installed or if you notice any vibrations or shaking while driving.

How do wheels become unbalanced?

Wheels can become unbalanced because of different things. Over time, the weight around the tyre and wheel can change, making one part heavier. This might happen from things like tyres wearing out unevenly, parts of the car’s suspension getting old, or hitting bumps in the road. Also, when tyres get put onto wheels, they might not be exactly even, which can cause imbalance. Sometimes, stuff like mud or dirt sticking to the wheels can make them unbalanced too. Basically, any change in how weight is spread around the wheels can make them unbalanced, which can make driving shaky and wear the tyres weird. Getting your wheels balanced fixes this, making driving smoother and safer.

Tyre change, wheel balancing and wheel alignment done during car repair at coastwide service centre
mechanic doing wheel alignment on a car, followed by wheel balancing

What is wheel alignment?

Wheel alignment is when the angles of your car’s wheels are adjusted so they point in the right direction according to the manufacturer’s specifications. This adjustment makes sure your car drives straight and the tyres wear evenly. When your wheels are aligned properly, it helps with steering, improves handling, and reduces tyre wear. If your wheels are out of alignment, your car might pull to one side, the steering wheel might be crooked when you’re driving straight, or your tyres might wear unevenly. Getting your wheels aligned by a mechanic makes sure your car drives well and safely. When your wheels aren’t aligned right, it can wear your tyres unevenly. This can weaken them and make them more likely to get a flat tyre. If that ever happens, check out our guide on how to change a flat tyre.

Why do wheels get out of an alignment?

Wheels can get out of alignment due to various reasons. Some common causes include hitting potholes or curbs, driving on rough roads, and normal wear and tear over time. Even small impacts can knock your wheels out of alignment, affecting how they point and causing issues with steering and tyre wear. Additionally, worn suspension components or parts can also lead to misalignment. Regularly checking and adjusting your wheel alignment helps maintain your car’s handling and tyre longevity.

Visit us in Molendinar for a quick wheel alignment service!

Frequently Asked Questions

Do I need wheel alignment or wheel balance?

If your car pulls to one side or your steering wheel shakes, you might need a wheel alignment. If your car vibrates at certain speeds, you might need wheel balancing.

How often do wheels need balancing?

Wheels may need balancing if you notice vibrations while driving. It’s a good idea to check them whenever you install new tyres or notice any unusual vibrations.

Can I balance my own tyres?

Yes, you can balance your own tyres if you have the right equipment and knowledge. However, it’s often best to leave this task to professionals who have the proper tools and expertise to make sure your tyres are balanced correctly.

How long can you drive on unbalanced tyres?

It’s challenging to provide an exact estimate without inspecting the tyres in person. However, if you notice any symptoms of unbalanced tyres, such as vibrations or uneven tyre wear, it’s best to schedule a wheel balancing service as soon as possible.

Should you balance tyres after wheel alignment?

Yes, it’s generally recommended to balance your tyres after a wheel alignment. While wheel alignment focuses on adjusting the angles of the wheels to make sure they are parallel to each other and perpendicular to the ground, wheel balancing makes sure that the weight distribution around the tire and wheel assembly is even. Balancing the tyres after alignment helps to minimise vibrations, resulting in better vehicle performance and handling.

Do you have to balance all 4 tyres?

Yes, it’s best to balance all four tyres. Wheel balancing them together helps make sure they’re all even and work well.

What are the signs of a bad wheel bearing?

A bad wheel bearing can make your car feel shaky or wobbly, especially at higher speeds. You might hear a rumbling or grinding noise coming from the wheels, especially when you’re turning. Another sign is if you notice your steering wheel is harder to turn than usual or if your car pulls to one side while driving. If you suspect you have a bad wheel bearing, it’s important to get it checked out by a mechanic as soon as possible to avoid further damage to your car.

How long does a full wheel alignment take?

A full wheel alignment usually takes around 30 minutes to an hour. But it might take longer if there are extra adjustments needed. The time can also change based on your car’s condition and any issues it might have. It’s best to check with your mechanic for a more accurate estimate.

Can you do a wheel alignment at home?

It’s not easy to do a wheel alignment at home because it requires special equipment and expertise. A professional mechanic has the right tools and knowledge to make sure your wheels are aligned correctly. Trying to do it yourself without the proper equipment could make the problem worse and affect your car’s performance and safety. It’s better to leave wheel alignments to the experts who can do the job accurately and safely.

Why is my steering wheel crooked?

If your steering wheel is crooked, it might mean your wheels aren’t lined up right. That happens if you hit something or if parts in your car wear out. When this happens, it’s best to get a mechanic to check and fix it.

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07 5527 8698

0430 460 267


4/8 Reichert Dr, Molendinar