Under normal circumstances, a wheel alignment will take an average of one hour, whether it’s a two-wheel-drive or four-wheel-drive vehicle. If there’s too much wear and tear or damage on the suspension system, steering bushing, track rod, or other parts, it’ll take a longer time as some components must be replaced.
Aside from having your vehicle’s wheels checked on a regular basis, keep an eye out for the below indications that your steering wheel may need to be realigned:
- Car pulling sharply in one direction.
- Slight pulling
- Vibrating steering wheel
- Crooked steering wheel
- Uneven tire wear
If you notice any of the above signs, schedule an appointment with a mechanic immediately. Proper wheel alignment helps your vehicle’s overall performance.
Different Types of Tire Alignment
Wheel alignment can vary greatly depending on the vehicle suspension. Such as:
- Front-end Alignment. Two-wheeler alignment focuses on the alignment of your front wheel axle. An hour should be enough and a reasonable timeframe for how long a front-end alignment would take.
- Thrust alignment. A thrust alignment is the best option if your vehicle has a solid rear axle. Front end and thrust alignment are required to ensure the alignment of your wheel. A thrust alignment takes barely an hour.
- 4-wheel alignment. This type of wheel alignment is typically performed on four-wheel drive vehicles. It combines elements from the front end and thrust alignment to allow independent suspension. A four-wheel drive alignment can also take an hour.
The Factors That Affect Wheel Alignment Time
Wheel alignment doesn’t have to be a big problem. It usually takes about an hour to align the wheels. But hey, a few things can mess with that timeframe. If your wheels are in bad shape, it might take longer cause you’ll need some repairs or parts replaced. Here are some factors that can affect how long a wheel alignment takes:
- Excessive Wear – If your wheels are completely broken, you may need to replace some parts or even buy whole new wheels.
- Suspension system problems – This one’s serious. If your suspension system is all messed up, it can add some extra time to the alignment process.
- Steering bushing trouble – Damaging your steering bushing can mess with your car’s ability to handle vibrations. So, it’s a good idea to fix that important bit before you go for a wheel alignment.
- Track rod woes – Damaged track rods can mess with your steering. If you’ve messed up both, be prepared for a long wait.
So, those are some things that can influence how long a wheel alignment takes. It’s always good to be aware of any issues your wheels or car might have before you go in for an alignment. If you want to know the cost of alignment you can go through our guide How Much Does A Wheel Alignment Cost?