Common Truck Alignment Problems
When driving long distances, it's very common to notice that your vehicle drifts to the left or right. This is caused by your wheels not being properly aligned and could signify that you need truck alignment services as soon as possible.
Just like regular cars, heavy-duty trucks use suspensions. Your wheel hubs connect to the steering knuckle with either ball joints or kingpins. These are mechanisms that allow your wheels to move up, down, or sideways depending on how you're driving your truck, but they can also wear out over time and cause alignment problems.
Driving long miles on poorly aligned suspensions can get worn beyond their ability to remain horizontal with the rest of the truck body. This can lead to serious problems like your wheels getting damaged when they contact things like potholes or rocks.
You'll know that you need an alignment done when your truck pulls in one direction when you apply the gas pedal, forcing you to compensate by veering left or right while driving straight down the road.
Mileage recommendation: 100,000 miles
Recommendations & Solutions
The first thing you'll need to do is have your suspension checked to see if the problem is actually with your alignment. This means having an inspection performed on all of your ball joints and kingpins, as well as checking that your tie rods are secure at both ends.
The most common solution to alignment problems is to have your wheels realigned. This means that you'll need to have all four corners of your truck re-measured so the technician can adjust them accordingly. This will help correct any drift issues you might have but doesn't fix anything underneath your suspension system.
If there is serious damage being done by faulty wheel alignment, you might need to have your wheel bearing or steering knuckle replaced. The ball joints and kingpins should also be looked at to make sure they're not damaged. If your wheels are made of alloy, the mechanic might need to weld them back together or replace them entirely if they can't fix them.
In cases where your wheel is bent out of shape, you'll need to have them replaced entirely for the truck wheels to go back to their proper position.
What Is A Wheel Alignment?
A wheel alignment is a service that involves realigning your wheels so that they are all perpendicular to the ground and parallel to each other.
The camber, caster, and toe contribute to proper wheel alignment.
Camber is the measure of the degree of perpendicular offset.
Caster is the angle of your wheel’s pivot. It's attached to the suspension, and when this angle is out of alignment straight-line tracking is affected.
Toe refers to the angle of directional difference between the tire and the centerline of the vehicle.
Your truck's front and rear wheels should always be perpendicular to the ground and parallel to the tire beside it. Having routine wheel alignments can potentially save you thousands in the long run while promoting optimal vehicle performance.
What Are The Benefits of Wheel Alignment?
A wheel alignment can keep your car running safely and effectively by encouraging less tire wear, higher gas mileage, and safer driving conditions. Uneven tire wear may be caused by misaligned wheels.
A vehicle pulling to the right or left while in motion may indicate uneven tread wear. Wheel alignment issues, if left unchecked, can lead to steering and suspension problems, because driving with your wheels out of alignment puts stress not just on your tires but also on your suspension components.
Contact us right away if your vehicle starts pulling to the right or left while driving, or if you notice a vibration in the steering wheel at higher speeds.