Tire Balancing in Austin, TX
Tire balancing is important to extend the life of your tires, as well as increase the basic safety of your vehicle. Lamb’s Tire & Automotive offers quality affordable tire balancing services in Austin, TX, and the surrounding areas.
Here are some ways to tell if you need a tire balancing service:
- Vibrations when driving
- Uneven tread wear
- Steering that becomes less smooth over the life of the tires
- Pulling to one side
How Often To Balance Tires
Many drivers don’t think of tire balancing as a part of their routine tire service. Other drivers believe balancing is a service that is only needed when they first buy their tires. The truth is that alignment checks and tire balancing should be part of your vehicle’s routine maintenance throughout its life. These two important tire services promote longevity for your tires, while also playing a key role in vehicle safety, acceleration, braking, handling, and fuel economy.
Unpacking the Benefits of Balanced Tires
Tire balancing is a vital service that offers substantial benefits for you and your vehicle down the road. Here are just a few of the many benefits of balancing your tires:
A Smoother Ride
The most notable benefit of tire balancing is a smoother ride. Unbalanced tires can cause noticeable unpleasant vibrations — especially at higher speeds. Balancing your tires helps ensure you can enjoy a smooth ride at low speeds and highway speeds.
Extended Tire Life
Because unbalanced tires make uneven contact with the road as they vibrate, they will wear unevenly if left unchecked. Balancing your tires, not only when you first purchase them, but also routinely throughout their lives, will help your tires make smooth and solid contact with the road and promote even tire wear so that you can get the most mileage out of them.
Improved Fuel Economy
Unnecessary vibrations coming from your tires can increase their rolling resistance, forcing your vehicle to work harder to travel down the road. This can translate to unevenly worn tires, difficulty coasting, and higher rolling resistance, all contributing to decreased fuel economy. Tire balancing helps promote even tire wear, lower rolling resistance, and improve handling, which enables optimal fuel economy.
Prevent Suspension Damage
Because unbalanced tires tend to vibrate, they can put unnecessary stress on your suspension system — causing your shocks, struts, and other suspension components to wear prematurely. Repairing or replacing suspension components can be a task that costs thousands of dollars. Yet, a simple tire balancing service can cost less than $100. For this reason, we recommend performing a routine tire balance on your vehicle to protect these vital suspension components.
As your tires vibrate from being unbalanced, they can make uneven contact with the road. This is more than just a matter of discomfort; it becomes a matter of safety. Vehicle vibrations, especially at high speeds, can make your vehicle uncontrollable and cause you to be scared, slide, and lose control of your vehicle while operating at higher speeds.
Tire Balancing vs. Wheel Alignment
Many drivers hear the terms tire balancing and wheel alignment and believe they are the same. However, these two different services both play essential roles in affecting your tires, your fuel economy, and how safe your vehicle is on the road.
Tire Balancing Explained
Regardless of what type of tires your vehicle uses, tiny imperfections during the manufacturing process translate to vibrations when they spin. While these vibrations are usually unnoticeable at low speeds, once the tires begin to operate at highway speeds (typically above 50 mph), these vibrations can become quite apparent. Some vibrations can be so severe that they can cause a driver to lose control of their vehicle.
To counter these imperfections, one of our ASE-certified mechanics will install tiny counterweights onto the side of your tire or inside your wheel well to ensure that when your tires roll, they do so smoothly.
We recommend performing tire balancing services every 5,000 to 7,500 miles. Because this service interval aligns with tire rotation intervals, we recommend performing this service each time you bring your car into our Austin tire shop for a rotation service.
Wheel Alignment Explained
While tire balancing ensures that your tires roll smoothly on the road, wheel alignment ensures that they roll in a straight line. When your vehicle comes off the assembly line, its wheels have been tuned to roll perfectly straight. If you were to let go of the steering wheel, the vehicle would continue to drive in a straight line without needing correction.
Over time, imperfections in the road’s surface, potholes, speed bumps, and everyday wear and tear from acceleration, braking, and cornering can cause your wheels to drift out of alignment slowly. It can cause your vehicle to pull to the left or right even if a single wheel moves just one degree off center.
While this just sounds like an annoyance, having misaligned wheels can have adverse effects on your tires, including the following:
- Premature wear
- Uneven tire wear
- Pulling to one side
- Difficulty to control
- Decreased fuel economy
- Suspension damage
We recommend performing a wheel alignment check every year. However, the frequency with which your vehicle will need wheel alignment services will vary. Some vehicles will need a wheel alignment immediately after hitting a pothole or experiencing a minor collision. In contrast, other vehicles may not need wheel alignment services for extended periods. Performing a wheel alignment check every year helps to ensure that your wheels are still traveling in a straight line.
Allow Lamb’s Tire & Automotive To Handle All of Your Automotive Needs
At Lamb’s Tire & Automotive, we are a full-service tire center that can handle all your auto-related needs. Whether you need tire rotation and balancing services or your tire has gone flat and you need a new tire installed, look no further than our tire shop.
In addition to affordable prices and fantastic customer service, we also feature money-saving service coupons that allow you to enjoy trusted service at affordable prices.
Schedule an appointment at Lamb’s Tire & Automotive today and enjoy certified tire service that you can depend on.
Frequently Asked Questions
A tire balancing service involves placing your car’s tire and wheel assembly on a specialized machine that detects imbalances. If your tire is not balanced, then small counterweights are added to the rim to offset any uneven weight distribution. Doing this helps prevent uneven tire wear, vibration, and steering issues, ultimately enhancing vehicle safety and performance.
Tires are balanced when you replace 2 or 4 tires on your automobile. Because tires wear depending on driving routines and road conditions, unequal wear will start to become recognizable after the first 1,000-2,000 miles of usage. Tires must be checked for balance every 4,000-6,000 miles. Our mechanics can easily help identify whether your tires should be rotated and balanced based on wear or mileage.
It is not advised to replace just one tire as this might create major problems with the alignment, balance, and handling of the vehicle.