Over the course of the thousands of miles that your vehicle will travel, your car’s wheel alignment will be put to the test by all the different road conditions from smooth highways to that little dirt road on the way to the cottage, not to mention the potholes, curbs, and other anomalies you drive over every day.
It’s normal that the original wheel alignment may change over time. Even though drivers don’t notice this change, the tires will eventually wear unevenly, the vehicle will tend to drift to one side, and you may even hear a strange noise coming from one of the wheels when the vehicle hits a bump or pothole.
During an inspection, a certified technician will be able to detect the problem – a loose tie rod, a damaged ball joint, a bent suspension arm, a broken torsion bar… The list goes on and on, but the result is always the same. The damaged parts have to be replaced and the wheels realigned before the car will handle like it used to.
It is also a good idea to have your wheels aligned every year or 12,000 miles or when you get new tires installed, which often corresponds to the manufacturer’s recommended interval for routine maintenance.