Wheel balancing and tracking in Epping

Car wheels are an essential component of a vehicle and are prone to damage due to various factors. Therefore, it is crucial to take care of them because they play a critical role in ensuring safe and efficient driving. Wheels in a car serve several important functions that are essential for safe and efficient driving. Firstly, wheels support the weight of the vehicle and provide a stable platform for the tyres to grip the road surface. Secondly, wheels enable smooth and controlled movement by allowing the tires to rotate freely. They facilitate forward and backward motion as well as turning and manoeuvring. Also, wheels transfer power from the engine to the road, propelling the vehicle forward. Another critical function of wheels is to provide suspension support. Together with the tires, wheels absorb and distribute the impact of road irregularities, such as bumps, potholes, and rough surfaces. This helps to enhance ride comfort, reduce vibrations, and maintain vehicle stability by ensuring optimal tire contact with the road. Additionally, wheels play a vital role in the braking system. The brake discs or drums are mounted onto the wheels, and when the brake pedal is engaged, the brake callipers or wheel cylinders clamp onto these components to slow down or stop the rotation of the wheels. This friction-based braking mechanism allows the driver to control the speed of the vehicle effectively. Now you can imagine the significance of wheels for a vehicle, so get your vehicle the best wheel balancing and tracking in Epping!

What is the difference between wheel balancing and tracking?

There is a difference between wheel balancing and wheel tracking (also known as wheel alignment). While both processes involve the wheels of a vehicle, they address different aspects of wheel maintenance and performance.

Wheel balancing primarily focuses on addressing imbalances in the distribution of weight around the wheel and tyre assembly. Over time, small variations in weight can occur due to factors such as tyre wear or the placement of wheel weights. These imbalances can cause vibrations in the vehicle, especially at higher speeds. During the wheel balancing process, a technician will use specialized equipment to identify the specific areas of imbalance and then add or remove weights to ensure even weight distribution around the wheel. This balancing process minimizes vibrations, improves ride comfort, and reduces stress on other vehicle components.

On the other hand, wheel tracking or wheel alignment refers to the adjustment of the angles at which the wheels make contact with the road surface. Proper wheel alignment is crucial for maintaining optimal vehicle handling, tyre wear, and overall safety. It involves adjusting three primary angles: camber, caster, and toe. Correct alignment ensures that all four wheels are parallel to each other and perpendicular to the road surface, allowing for even tyre wear and optimal handling characteristics. Improper alignment can result in uneven tire wear, compromised vehicle stability, and increased fuel consumption.

What are the signs that the vehicle needs wheel balancing or tracking?

There are several signs that indicate your vehicle may require wheel balancing or wheel tracking.

Signs that indicate the need for wheel balancing:

  1. Vibrations: If you experience vibrations in the steering wheel, seat, or floorboard, especially at higher speeds, it may indicate an imbalance in the wheels. The vibrations can vary in intensity, but they are typically felt as a pulsating or shaking sensation.
  2. Uneven Tyre Wear: Uneven wear patterns on your tyres, such as cupping or scalloping, can be an indication of wheel imbalance. Imbalanced wheels can cause certain areas of the tyre to make more contact with the road surface, resulting in uneven wear.
  3. Steering Wheel Wobble: If you notice a wobbling sensation in the steering wheel, particularly at certain speeds, it may suggest an imbalance in the front wheels. The wobble can be felt as a side-to-side movement in the steering wheel.

Signs that indicate the need for wheel tracking:

  1. Vehicle Pulling: If your vehicle tends to pull to one side while driving on a straight road, it may indicate a misalignment of the wheels. This pulling sensation can be subtle or more pronounced and may require constant correction of the steering to maintain a straight path.
  2. Uneven Tyre Wear: Misaligned wheels can cause uneven tyre wear patterns, such as excessive wear on the inner or outer edges of the tyres. This can lead to premature tyre wear, reducing its lifespan and potentially compromising safety.
  3. Steering Wheel Off-Center: When driving straight, if you notice that the steering wheel is not centred but is instead tilted to one side, it suggests a potential wheel alignment issue. Proper alignment should result in the steering wheel being centered when driving in a straight line.
  4. Handling Issues: Poor wheel alignment can affect the vehicle’s handling and stability. You may experience a sense of instability, difficulty maintaining control, or a vague steering response. Moreover, the vehicle may feel less precise and require more effort to steer.

 

The benefits of wheel balancing and tracking are significant and contribute to a smoother ride, extended tire life, improved fuel efficiency, and enhanced safety on the road!