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Why Wheel Alignment Should Be Done?


Why Wheel Alignment Should Be Done?

The term is used in connection with the stability and control of vehicle in motion fully.  Wheel alignment means to achieve directional stability during straight ahead position, perfect rolling condition on steering and recovery after completing a turn. There are mainly three types of alignment namely front end alignment, thrust angle and four wheel alignment. During front end alignment, only front axle’s angles are measured and adjustment. This type of alignment is already for vehicle having a solid rear axle, but confirming that rear tires are positioned directly behind the front tires is also important which is done by thrust angle alignment.

However all vehicle don’t have fully adjustable alignments parameters. Some vehicles require after market kits to allow sufficient adjustment to compensate for accident damage or change in alignment due to the installation of lower springs. It also has to be remembered that the alignment has to be done only when the vehicle carries the specific load.



Wheel alignment means that while moving straight ahead the wheels should be parallel in the event they are pointing inward, then they are said to be toe-in whereas if they are pointing outward they are said to be toe out. Both these situations are undesirable because in either case while rolling forewarned each wheel will be simultaneously slipping laterally due to which a continuous cross tread scrubbing. For good steering and vehicle stability two conditions should be met. 


First one; there should not be any set back. Set back by the definition in automobile industry is a condition in which one wheel on the axle is in front of or behind the other wheel in relative to a chassis frame. A set back up to 6 mm is considered under normal tolerance. Incorrect or unintended set back may often occur due to collision damage.

Second one; the thrust angle should be zero. Thrust angle is angle made by thrust line with longitudinal center line of vehicle. If thrust angle is not zero the vehicle will “dog track” and steering wheel will not be centered. When the thrust angle is zero rear wheels follow the front wheels properly. Obviously for this condition all the four wheels should be parallel to the frame and this is called tracking.


To have effective steering under all condition and at all loads it is very important to consider and understand factors which influence stability and control of vehicle. The factors include steering geometry, suspension system and steering geometry.



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