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Q: I need to have my front tyres replaced since they have worn on the insides, what do I need, wheel alignment, or geometry?

A: Without doubt a geometry, the cost is similar to wheel alignment plus the cost of any adjustments, but the result with a print out will give you the evidence that all is well.

Q: My local tyre centre has done the wheel alignment on my car and now the steering wheel is off line, does this matter?

A: Yes, this is typical of basic wheel alignment, the adjustment was blind, without a geometry they cannot know which wheel is misaligned so if the wrong wheel is adjusted then the steering rack will be offset, and the steering wheel will be collectively off line.

Q: Is wheel alignment part of an MOT test?

A: No not at the moment, but in Europe it is, so I don’t think it will be long before the UK follows.

Q: I had a geometry done two thousand mile ago, but my front tyres are showing wear on the outside, how can this be?

A: When the geometry was set the position of the geometry would be by the book, neutral, everybody has a unique style, so the settings would need fine tuning, this cost should have been covered by the initial payment.

Q: I had a small accident in my car, I have just got it back from the body shop and all seems well, would they have checked the alignment or geometry?

A: Probably not, although the insurer will authorize payment for the repair, even they don’t insist on a geometry to be sure that all is well? You must, if not when the tyres wear in a few thousand miles it will be up to you to prove that the repair was incomplete.

Q: I want to lower my car will this affect the alignment?

A: Yes, most of the angles will change, including the wheel alignment, so if this is the only angle checked the problems with the rest will remain, you must have the geometry checked, the reason for lowering the suspension is to deny body roll, but the geometry angles must be recovered, once done this will not remove the benefits of the lowered suspension.

Q: My car has failed the MOT because one shock absorber is leaking, shall I replace one or two?

A: Two, the reason the car failed is that worn suspension will effect handling and braking, this means that the suspension is worn, only replacing one will mirror the reason it failed in the first place, in fact reality suggests you need four units.

Q: I want to have the geometry done on my car but I don’t now were to go, can you recommend anywhere?

A: directly no, seems harsh but I don’t have an overview of the industry, although I am working on that, the best I can recommend is ask a friend, where do they go, did they do a good job, or do what you are doing now search the Internet, get a print out and expect the offer of fine tuning.

Q: I’m going to lower my car and I need road/ race non standard geometry set-up, can you help with the figures, and how much will this cost?

A: Yes/ Nothing.

Q: When my car is serviced don’t they check the wheel alignment?

A: In most cases no, some main dealers don’t even check the lights or tyre pressures, even on a major service, so wheel alignment is far from the check list.

Q: I am thinking of buying a second hand car, is it worth getting a geometry done even if the HPI is ok?

A: Yes, accidents that involve the suspension most times will cost less than the insurance excess to repair, so when the owner is paying a low cost repair is normally looked for, a geometry will show the cars fingerprint and cannot be hidden, don’t be sold because of the shiny paint.

Q: I have a new car 6100 miles, on the service they said I need two new front tyres, in fact the tyres have worn down to the wire on the insides, according to them the wheel alignment and the geometry is not covered in the warranty, I know that I have not hit anything, kerb pothole etc, with a new car you do avoid all, so how can it be that the tyres are so badly worn, is 6100 miles now days considered fair wear and tear, and if so how can any car manufacturer be allowed to make a car that wears tyres in such a dangerous way?

A: wheels-inmotion dealt with this case via email, and in this case, going against my rule of not conversing with a third party, I did, the car make and model are irrelevant, ( name and shame ) on this site is not my intension, I can only say that this make of car has the same name as a big cat! The conversation with the dealers was just short of “ go and multiply by yourself” the wear issue was answered with a “well most of them wear like that!” so pursuing resolve, the final reply was “geometry is not covered under warranty and that’s it.”

The reason for the wear was the wheel inset, standard geometry, optional wheels, in this case the wheels and tyres were replaced, at the owners cost. “Thanks big cat! Excellent customer care”.
 
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