Is Wheel Alignment Necessary Before Changing Tires?

Drivers may not know when they need a wheel alignment. However, as they drive, they will realize that something is wrong when their vehicles start drifting. Also, the angles of their wheels will become misaligned when their steering wheels are off. But, before rushing to Libertyville Subaru dealerships to get their car inspected, it is wise for the driver to rule out other possibilities.


What Is Wheel Alignment?


For vehicle owners to determine whether they should align their automobile’s wheels done before or after replacing tires, they must understand the system. A vehicle’s suspension and steering have a number of parts that need to be in perfect condition and aligned correctly for it to handle well and its tires to wear evenly.


When someone buys a new vehicle, all these components are aligned perfectly through a computerized system. However, mileage, potholes, rugged terrain, and collisions cause the parts to become misaligned. A misaligned vehicle leads to the wear of its tires. However, it is unlikely that worn out tires will cause it to become misaligned.


New Tires Or Alignment — Which Comes First?


Many car owners do not know whether they should get their tires changed before or after having their vehicles aligned. Some people claim that worn tires may affect the car’s alignment. However, experts have a different opinion. According to many professionals, the only effect that worn tires will have on a vehicle is altering its ride height.


In the past, most cars came with different angles that required adjusting at their front end. They included:


           Toe in toe out — this determined whether the tire’s front side needed to point in or out.

           Caster — the term was used to refer to an imaginary line that extended vertically from the ground up via the center of the wheel.

           Camber — it determined if the tire’s top tilts were towards or away from the center of the car.


Although each of the angles plays a crucial part in how well the vehicle handles, only toe and camber affect tire wear.


Drivers who still own vehicles from the past have experienced better results by having their tires replaced before alignment since excessive wear could have affected the car’s camber measurement. However, newer models come with a fixed end where caster and camber levels are set at the factory and, therefore, cannot be adjusted. This leaves only the toe levels needing adjustments.


Can You Get An Alignment Before Installing New Tires?


The answer is yes. Drivers can have their vehicles aligned before purchasing new tires. This is because worn tires only affect the car’s ride height, which is negligible given the latest designs in suspension and steering.

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