How to Check Car Alignment

October 18th, 2019 by

When your car is not aligned properly there are many symptoms that may present themselves although many times there are no symptoms at all. That is why it is important to check your vehicles alignment regularly. There are many reasons and ways your car can become un-aligned. The margin for error is also very small making it very difficult to diagnose with out special equipment. Luckily at Rensselaer Honda using our Quick Check Drive we can check your cars alignment very quickly with out an appointment at no charge to you. If the vehicle is not aligned properly we can align it for you and have you on your way in no time. Learning how to check car alignment, symptoms, causes, types, and how to fix it can help save a lot of money down the road.


There are many ways a vehicle can become un-aligned. Below is a list of driving practices to avoid in order to help keep your vehicle properly aligned.

  • Getting into an accident
  • Running over large potholes
  • Bumping parking stop blocks in a parking lot
  • Driving over or hitting a curb
  • Driving too fast over speed bumps

Symptoms Of Your Car Being Out Of Alignment

Below is a list of things to look for to know whether your car needs an alignment or not.

Uneven or rapid tire wear –  When a vehicle needs an alignments sometimes the tires will start to wear down quicker towards the edges of the tires. If not caught and fixed in a timely manner the tires can wear down exposing the metal cords which will eventually lead to a blow out. View the photo below for an example of how an unaligned vehicle can affect your tires.

How to Check Car Alignment

• Steering wheel being crooked while driving straight – If your driving in a straight line but need to hold the steering wheel slightly crooked to maintain that straight line there is a good chance it is due to the car being unaligned.

• Steering wheel pulling to the left of right – Another good indicator is when the vehicle is constantly trying to turn to the left or right and you need to keep compensating by steering the opposite way.

• Squealing tires – Tire squealing during hard braking and sharp cornering is normal. Although if you notice a squealing sound even when taking gentle turns, you may have under inflated tires or there could be an alignment issue.

How To Check Car Alignment

To check your car’s alignment just stop over at Rensselaer Honda and drive through our service drive. Using the Quick Check Drive by Hunter we will be able to tell you your exact alignment status at no cost. Watch the video below to see exactly how this tool works to save you money and time.

How To Align Your Car

Aligning your car requires specialized tool. Therefore you will probably not be able to do it your self unless you have an alignment rack at your house. An Alignment rack is a lift with cameras at the front that takes pictures of targets attached to the wheels by the technician. The camera take pictures of the targets measuring…

  • Camber – Camber is when the top of the tire is tilted inwards our outwards. It’s considered positive camber if the top of the tire is tilted outwards and negative when it tilts inward.
  • Caster – Caster is when the whole wheel is moved forward or backwards from the steering pivot points.
  • Toe – Toe is when the front of the tires are pointing inwards or outwards. much like if you look down at your feet and point your toes in or out.

How to Check Car Alignment

  • Camber, Caster and Toe are measured in degrees. When they all read zero degrees the car is perfectly aligned. If the readings are positive or negative the technician needs to make the appropriate adjustments until everything reads zero degrees.

Stop into Rensselaer Honda to get your alignment checked for free. Call 518-279-1171 to make an appointment or use the link below to schedule an appointment online.