Preventative maintenance is a critical factor in helping you get the most out of your vehicle and keeping it in safe driving condition. You’re probably most familiar with things like oil changes, brake service, and tire rotations. But, don’t neglect another important routine maintenance task: a wheel alignment.

Do you know the difference between a front-end alignment vs. 4-wheel alignment? We’ll get into some more specifics on that later, but first, let’s get a little background on the subject.

 

What is an alignment?

To get a better understanding of exactly what a wheel alignment is, let’s first look at it from a human perspective.

If you’ve ever experienced your back being ‘out’, you know that it can affect other parts of your body. You might feel pain down the back of your legs, have neck pain, or get a headache. To solve the issue, you go to the chiropractor who then puts you back into alignment. This might clear up your symptoms for a while but at some point, you move just the wrong way or your daily activities cause your back to go ‘out’ again. You visit the chiropractor for another alignment and the cycle repeats itself.

A vehicle wheel alignment is similar. When it’s brand new, your car has everything aligned perfectly. It doesn’t take long, however, before driving conditions cause misalignment of the wheels and they need to be fixed in order for safe driving to continue.

A proper wheel alignment adjusts your vehicle’s suspension components so that your tires are at the right angle and make proper contact with the road. This enables even tire wear and maximum road contact for driving safety.

 

Front-end alignment vs. 4-wheel alignment

When you work with a trustworthy and honest auto repair shop, your mechanic will know whether or not your vehicle requires a front-end alignment or a 4-wheel alignment. But, their names give you a clue as to which is which.

  • Front-End Alignment: Just as the name implies, this type of alignment only involves the front 2 wheels. This option is typically performed on vehicles with a non-adjustable rear axle.
  • 4-Wheel Alignment: This service involves adjusting all four wheels: a caster and toe adjustment for the front two and a camber and toe adjustment for the rear.

 

When to schedule service

At Good Works Auto Repair, we care about your vehicle and your driving safety. For this reason, we recommend scheduling wheel alignment service after having an accident, installing new tires, or replacing suspension or steering parts.

In addition, if you notice uneven tire wear, you feel a vibration in your steering wheel or seat, or if your vehicle pulls to one side while you’re driving, a wheel alignment could be in order. Simply give us a call or schedule an appointmentonline today!