Jul 17, 2019
Any car is easier to drive and suffers less wear to its tyres and other components if the wheels are kept perfectly in line with the road.
The front wheels on our cars are not set exactly parallel to one another, often they will be set to point slightly in or slightly out at the front. The set of wheels is called tracking. Car wheel tracking, also known as wheel alignment is important to maintaining your car and ensuring that it is roadworthy and safe.
If the tracking on the front tyres is off, you will notice that the tyres will wear out very rapidly either along the inner or outer edges. Another symptom that you can experience is that the car will not handle as well, to the extent that it will be impossible to keep the car in line. Hitting curbs or driving at speed and hitting a pothole can also cause the need for wheel tracking to be reset.
Due to the rate at which your tyres wear being related to correct wheel alignment, you should try and get your car wheels tracked regularly. Many expert mechanics will recommend that it should be done once a year, every 10000 miles or if tyres are wearing unevenly. You will find that wheel tracking is normally done as part of every intermediate service.
Car wheel tracking or alignment checks are more sophisticated than they used to be. It used to be that mechanics and garages would have used hanging gauges, suspended from a fine thread on to which a light beam is shone. This measures any divergence between alignment and a true vertical.
Nowadays, wheel tracking is carried out by numerous beams which possess the ability to measure the angle at which all four wheels set, at least three points around the wheel’s circumference. This is a two-person job, one person will hold the steering wheel straight while another will check the alignment.
As it’s a precise and labour-intensive job, as well as being reasonably quick (up to an hour), car wheel tracking costs will vary very little compared to other maintenance tasks. If you have new tyres fitted, it’s a given that the garage will carry out wheel tracking as part of their service.
Front-wheel tracking costs an average of £32.35 Want to find out where you can get wheel tracking in your local area? Enter your reg number and let us gather quotes from garages in your local area!