It is vital that your wheels are always balanced for car safety, performance and efficiency. Wheel balancing is simply the service undertaken to ensure that the weight of the car is evened out around the axel.
When to get your wheel balance checked?
Every time you have a new tyre on your vehicle it needs to be rebalanced. Garages replacing flat and worn out tyres generally do this before you leave the garage. The price of wheel balancing is usually within the cost of the tyre replacement at most garages.
There are numerous factors which can result in you needing a wheel balance check. The most common being the loss of a wheel weight through sudden impact or from damaged suspension. It is important to remember that even newly balanced wheels can be put out by bumps and pot holes encountered by everyday driving.
It’s best to get your wheel balance checked regularly and in the meantime if your car shows any signs of being unbalanced it is best to book in for a check at a car servicing garage.
Signs of unbalanced wheels
The three main signs of your wheels being out are vibration, noise and tyre damage.
Vibration is felt either through the steering wheel or the floor of the car whilst driving. This can even cause a shaking sensation in through your car seats. Generally this vibration can be felt when driving past a certain speed, in most cases this is 50 mph or more.
However don’t rely on this to be a sign as the vibration can be reduced and not felt because of the vehicles weight.
Noise can be caused by the vibration. For instance a noise can be heard from the shaking of the steering wheel when driving. If you hear a humming or knocking noise then this is more likely to be the wheel bearing.
Tyre damage can be caused by unbalanced wheels. As the weight isn’t evenly proportioned its means your wheels aren’t driving smoothly and certain points of the tyre is under more pressure than other parts. This causes uneven wear to your tyre and means the balance has been out for some time.
Safety and efficiency effects
Due to the cars imbalance this causes uneven tread on the road whilst driving. This is proven to be dangerous as it can affect your breaking distance and tyre grip.
The quality of your drive is affected and results with an unsmooth drive which then reduces a cars efficiency and uses more petrol.