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Tag: wheel alignment

5 Reasons Not to Ignore Alignment Issues

Do you know what happens when you ignore alignment issues in your automobile? You end up with an expensive repair bill, that’s what.

Think about the last time you drove your vehicle. Did it feel like you were in a fight for control with the steering wheel? If so, your automobile might have alignment issues. Ignoring them is never a good idea because prolonged misalignment can cause damage to other critical components in your car.

Before you know it, you’ve racked up expensive repairs you could have avoided if you’d addressed the alignment issues right away.

In this blog we’ll discuss:

A person pointing to uneven tread on a tire, which is what happens when you ignore alignment issues.
Uneven tread wear is a tell-tale sign of what happens if you ignore alignment issues.

What are the warning signs of alignment issues?

Alignment issues are sometimes present in subtle ways. Maybe you notice a slight pulling to one side when driving. You might brush it off because it’s not bothersome enough to convince you to call your mechanic.

Perhaps your tires look like they’re wearing a bit unevenly or make squealing noises when you’re going around a sharp corner.

All these things are your vehicle’s way of signaling that its alignment is off. Don’t wait to find a place to get alignments in Albuquerque. The longer you ignore the tell-tale signs of misalignment, the more expensive your repair bill.

How much does an alignment cost?

The cost for alignments in Albuquerque depends on the type of vehicle you have, the reason for the misalignment, and which auto mechanic you choose.

If you don’t ignore alignment issues and get to your mechanic at the first sign of trouble, you can avoid expensive repair bills that include replacing your tires because of uneven wear and tear.

Once the tread on your tires becomes worn in places, it can lead to damage to your vehicle’s axle, dampers, and springs, which are all part of the suspension system.

Reach out to your auto mechanic to get an accurate estimate on alignment costs, then schedule your appointment right away.

A car is filling up at the gas pump. Poor gas mileage happens when you ignore alignment issues.
Poor gas mileage happens when you ignore alignment issues in your vehicle.

What are 5 reasons not to ignore alignment issues?

You already know that ignoring alignment issues can lead to more expensive repairs down the road. Here are 5 more reasons why you should address misalignment at the first sign.

  1. Fuel Efficiency
    Misaligned wheels affect your vehicle’s fuel efficiency. Higher average gasoline prices in the Greater Albuquerque region are more than enough reason to get alignment issues handled quickly.

    When your wheels aren’t aligned, it forces your car to work harder to move forward, which decreases gas mileage. Keeping your wheels properly aligned improves fuel efficiency and saves you money on gas at the pump.

  2. Handling
    Proper wheel alignment improves your vehicle’s handling. When you’re navigating through challenging road conditions, it’s important to have full control of your vehicle. The last thing you want is to fight with your steering wheel while driving at high speeds on the interstate or cruising through the scenic mountains of New Mexico.

  3. Safety
    You’re not just risking your safety when you continue to drive a misaligned vehicle. Ignoring alignment issues can make your automobile difficult to control, risking the safety and well-being of everyone else on the roadways with you.

    Proper alignment makes sure your car stays on track – even when operating at higher speeds on the interstate or during inclement weather.

  4. Suspension
    New tires are the least of your worries if you ignore alignment issues for too long in your vehicle. When your wheels are misaligned, it puts stress on the suspension system. That extra strain causes damage to components that are costly to repair.

    Extend your vehicle’s lifespan – and save some of your hard-earned cash – by attending to alignment problems quickly.

  5. Tire Wear
    We’ve already mentioned that ignoring alignment issues can cause premature tire wear and tear. Tires with uneven treads can become costly, especially if you drive a 4-wheel vehicle. When one tire goes bad, you must replace them all to avoid unnecessary wear and tear on your drivetrain or risk confusing your traction control system.

Where do you go for alignments in Albuquerque?

Proper wheel alignment is essential to the safe operation of your vehicle. Ignoring them can reduce the lifespan of your automobile and lead to more costly repairs.

4 Signs of Alignment Issues in Albuquerque

You’re out for a Sunday drive with your family when you notice your car just feels different. You can’t quite put your finger on it, but you know it’s not handling the way it usually does.

Alignment issues can creep up on car owners in Albuquerque. Unlike other performance problems, it’s usually easy to spot when your vehicle is out of alignment. There are 4 tell-tale warning signs that it’s time to get your vehicle in for an alignment. Ignore them, and you could end up with costlier repairs down the road.

Alignment issue warning sign #1: pulling to one side

Until self-driving cars become available to the public, you’re stuck navigating your vehicle the old-fashioned way. It’s probably a good thing because difficulty steering is one of the first signs you need to visit a shop that provides alignments in Albuquerque.

Pay attention when you’re driving on a straight stretch of roadway. Does your vehicle feel like it’s pulling hard to one side or the other? If so, it might be time to get an alignment check.

Contrary to popular belief, you should never take your hands completely off the wheel when checking for alignment. It’s an unsafe practice that can get you into trouble on New Mexico’s already dangerous roadways. It also doesn’t accurately measure your car’s alignment because all roadways have some degree of crowning, which can cause slight pulls to one side or the other.

alignment albuquerque penny test
You can check for abnormal wear and tear on your tires by doing the “penny test.”

Alignment issue warning sign #2: abnormal tire wear and tear

Tires can tell you a lot about the safety of your vehicle. It’s one of the reasons why our mechanics check your tires during a scheduled maintenance visit with Rio Grande Automotive.

You don’t have to wait for your mechanic to discover an abnormal wear and tear problem with your tires. Occasionally check yourself, especially if you think your car is handling differently on the roadway. Here’s an easy way to do it.

Insert a standard U.S. penny into the tread, with Lincoln’s head facing down and out. Can you see all of Lincoln’s face? If so, your tread depth is below the recommended level—2/32 of an inch—for safety. Continue checking several places on your tires to see if the tread is evenly worn. If it measures differently on the same tire, then alignment issues can be at play.

Alignment issue warning sign #3: an off-center steering wheel

Look at your steering wheel when you’re not operating your vehicle. Most have the emblem of the automaker etched in the center. Is it centered on the wheel or crooked? If the wheel and the auto manufacturer’s logo are more than 2 to 3 degrees off in either direction, then you need to visit an alignment repair shop in Albuquerque.

alignment albuquerque squealing
Squealing tires when cornering can be another sign of alignment issues in Albuquerque.

Alignment issue warning sign #4: squealing tires

We’ve all seen TV shows or movies where a vehicle’s tires squealed going around a sharp corner. Usually, it’s when there’s a high-speed car chase happening in the plotline. If your vehicle is making a similar sound during normal driving, then misalignment could be the culprit.

Never ignore squealing from your tires when turning. If misalignment is to blame, pretending it’s not an issue can lead to more expensive damage to your vehicle’s entire suspension system.

How alignment issues in Albuquerque happen

Several components contribute to vehicle misalignment. The way you drive your vehicle is among the biggest factors. Hitting speed bumps too fast and jumping curbs when parallel parking are two of the most common ways drivers put their wheels out of alignment in Albuquerque.

Potholes also can do a number on your vehicle if you go over them too quickly. Even the most observant drivers can miss potholes. However, if you notice one, slow down and try to avoid it. If missing it isn’t possible without compromising your safety (and that of other drivers on the roadway), then go over it as slowly as possible.

Lastly, navigating through road construction projects can create the kind of uneven surfaces that mess with your vehicle’s alignment in Albuquerque. Take care with driving too fast through construction zones, especially ones that include metal plates and other uneven surfaces.

Checking for alignment in Albuquerque

Getting an alignment in Albuquerque is easy when you rely on the expertise of the mechanics at Rio Grande Automotive. We can service domestic and foreign vehicles. Call today to schedule an alignment check.

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