Has something happened to your car wheel, leaving you wondering and unsure whether it needs to be replaced or simply aligned? While an auto mechanic in Phoenix can provide the most comprehensive advice and recommendations based on your particular situation, the details below should help fill in some gaps in your knowledge before you schedule your appointment.
What constitutes your car’s wheel?
Terminology related to your vehicle may seem cut and dried, but not everyone refers to all car parts by the same name, and some may use terms interchangeably, which can lead to confusion. So, let’s look at how we are defining a wheel for the purposes of this article.
Car wheels are connected by a parallel configuration. An axle allows them to rotate. Wheels include a rim and a tire. You may hear the term “rim” used to refer to the entire wheel, though it is more technically correct to think of a rim as a wheel’s most outward edge. The tire attaches to the rim.
When should the wheel be replaced?
If cracks begin to appear around the stud holes of your car’s wheel or at the joints located between the center of the wheel and its rim, this may mean that corrosion has led to structural damage, signaling that your wheel should likely be replaced. Cracks of this type can also occur if the wheel nuts have become too loose or were configured too tightly.
When should the wheel be aligned?
It’s considerably more common for your wheel’s rims to be damaged than for the wheel itself to experience structural damage. For example, your rims can easily become dented as you park against a curb. If the denting is not major, generally a wheel alignment, as opposed to a replacement, is in order.
If you notice that your rim appears split or cracked or that chunks of metal have chipped on the rim, however, this may require a wheel replacement.
What if your wheels are made of steel and look like they’re rusting? Steel is typically resistant enough that rusting alone does not require a wheel replacement.
Other occasions when you may need an alignment
There are a variety of other situations that can necessitate wheel alignment:
- An accident that affected the back part of your car
- Each time you have your tires replaced
- If you have had your vehicle’s suspension, tie rods or ball joints replaced
- Major wear and tear on the inside or outside edge of your tires
Ready to bring your car to an auto mechanic in Phoenix for a possible wheel replacement or other repairs? The experts at S & J Auto Repair & Rental are general auto mechanics, meaning we handle everything from wheel changes to oil alignment. We will always communicate with you before performing any maintenance or repairs on your vehicle. We perform a vast array of auto repair services, including but not limited to wheel alignment, AC repair, engine diagnostics, emissions repair and testing, transmission repair, oil changes and brake service. For a more complete list of our services or to schedule an appointment, call us today!