1995 Vassar Street, Suite A, Reno, NV 89502
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Have you noticed yourself fighting your vehicle just to keep it straight? Do you feel minor or major vibrations coming from the steering wheel? All of these symptoms are signs of wheel misalignment, and it’s likely your vehicle will need a realignment service to fix the problem. During a wheel alignment service at Arrow Automotive, our ASE Certified technicians focus not on the wheels like the name implies, but the suspension system. Within the system are three angles that help make up your vehicle’s alignment: camber, caster, and toe. When perfectly aligned, these angles work in unison to ensure you have a comfortable drive. But when misaligned, they work against each other and make your driving experience uncomfortable, as well as damaging. Here’s what each angle is and why it’s important to your vehicle’s alignment and performance!
This angle is best viewed when looking at your vehicle from directly in front or behind. When perfectly aligned, the camber angle of your wheel will be at 0 degrees, perfectly perpendicular with the road. The camber will be negative when the tire is facing inward, towards the middle of the vehicle. As for a positive camber, that will occur when the top of the tire is facing away. Both of these aren’t good for your wheel alignment, and you should have a realignment service scheduled right away.
The caster angle is best viewed when looking at your vehicle directly from the side. The caster helps ensure the vehicle is stable at high speeds and increases tire lean when you are taking a corner. Without a properly aligned caster, you may have to fight your vehicle’s steering wheel to keep it aligned and may experience vibrations within the steering wheel when driving at higher speeds.
The toe is the angle of your tires when viewed from the top down. You can mimic this view from simply looking down at your feet! When the toe is perfectly aligned, it helps maintain even tread wear and extends the life of your tire. If the tires are pointed inward or outward, the edges of the tire may begin to wear out a little faster, which will lead to tire instability, uneven wear, and a shortened lifespan.