When driving your Mercedes, you may notice that something isn’t quite right. You’re drifting one direction to another. The steering is off. The angle of the wheel is misaligned. And if your car drifts to one side and you have to turn the steering wheel away from the centre position to avoid veering off on an angle, that is the surest indication that you’re in need of a wheel alignment. Perhaps it is the result of hitting a deep pothole or a hit on a Kerb while parking, or just daily commute over the 100’s of speed bumps on the roads.
Correct alignment not only saves money with tyres, but a badly aligned vehicle can cause MPG to suffer.
But before you pick up the phone to book in for a job that typically costs about £90 for most vehicles, it would be a good idea to check for under inflated tyres. We recommend checking tyre pressures on a bi-weekly basis. Tyre pressures play a big part in how a vehicle behaves on the road, and can also cause a vehicle’s steering to pull to one side, so eliminate that possibility first.
We advise also inspecting your tyres on a regular basis, to see if there are any signs of tyre wear, such as the tread being worn off along one edge, another sign of an alignment issue. However, it can be hard to separate normal from excessive wear, so unless you’re well trained in “tyreology” you shouldn’t jump to conclusions.
Vibrations in your wheels are different from alignment problems. Vibrations are probably caused by wheels being out of balance or bent (potholes can do that) or because parts of the suspension are worn, and getting your wheels aligned won’t solve those problems.
Some vehicles require only that the front wheels be aligned, but almost all Mercedes & AMG vehicles require four-wheel alignment. Alignment specifications differ by vehicle, and it isn’t as simple as just making sure all four wheels are pointed straight ahead.
Depending on the model of Mercedes, proper wheel alignment involves setting the camber (inward or outward tilt of the wheels when looking head on), caster (wheel tilt front or back looking from the side) and toe-in or toe-out (looking down at the wheels from above). The adjustments are measured in mm, or degrees/minutes and require specialized alignment equipment.
Wheel alignment isn’t usually listed by Mercedes Benz on the recommended maintenance schedule, so how often it should be done is open-ended. If your vehicle tracks as straight as an arrow, you’re wheels likely are properly aligned. Even so, it’s a good idea to have your alignment checked annually, we offer a free check for any vehicle if required as part of its Major service. If you have any uneven tyre wear, and are replacing tyres, we recommend an alignment check, so your new tyres don't immediately start to wear unevenly.
For any advice, call and speak to one of the team here @ MB Tech 01925 653 050