How Much Does a Wheel Alignment Cost?
A wheel alignment is a precess performed as a way to reduce tire wear in addition to multiple other reasons. Vehicle maintenance is an important aspect of owning a car that should never be overlooked. Services such as a wheel alignment are done to prevent major damage from happening to the vehicle. The vehicle owner’s safety heavily depends on how he takes care of the vehicle. The regular maintenance also affects the overall life of the car. Another reason why some owners may perform a wheel alignment is to improve performance for car racing.
How much does tire alignment cost?
- Wheel alignment usually requires the use of machines to be performed and therefore is usually done in an auto repair shop. Because of the competition within the auto maintenance industry, there are different repair shops that can offer the service at different prices. Some of the factors affecting the price are the make and model of the car and the location of the repair shop. Wheel alignment can also be packaged with other maintenance services which can provide an overall service for the vehicle. On average, wheel alignment is going to vary in price from $30 to as much as $150.
- For example, CourtesyCarMN.com is located in Minnesota and offers a wide variety of vehicle maintenance services that can cost anywhere from $65 to $80. The vehicle’s alignment will need to be checked first and they offer this service at $30.
- KaufmannTire.com is another establishment that provides wheel alignment services. Other automotive services are also offered such as oil change, electrical services as well as preventive maintenance. The cost of wheel alignment can range anywhere from $75 to $85 per hour.
Factors that influence the price:
- The type of a car. The “smarter” the car is, the more the alignment can cost. Also, a 4×4 can cost more than a 4-door sedan.
- Alignment. Is it going to be a rear tire alignment? Front tire? Both?
What is going to be included?
- The auto mechanic shop will check the vehicle and its condition before they perform the procedure. They will use state of the art equipment that includes hydraulics and computers to provide accurate results. The procedure usually takes less than an hour and this involves the vehicle inspection and alignment.
- Wheel alignment procedure does not require any use of parts and can be considered an all labor procedure.
- Depending on the shop, some may include a warranty that guarantees their work.
What are the extra costs?
- Other wheel alignment services should be performed to make sure that the car is in top shape. You can have other procedures performed such as wheel balancing which is similar to wheel alignment. See “How much does wheel balancing cost?“
- Most auto mechanic shops would recommend having wheel alignment performed annually. Although it is considered to be as added cost, the benefit greatly outweighs the cost since it can avoid further damage of the vehicle.
- If this maintenance is not performed on a regular basis, new tires for the car may need to be purchased.
Tips to know:
- As mentioned earlier, wheel alignment should be performed at least once a year. This will guarantee that tires will not wear as quickly.
- You should consider having wheel alignment performed with other types of maintenance service. Most auto mechanic shops would offer it at a packaged price and this would make sure that your vehicle is in great condition.
- When the wheels turn right or left when it should be going straight, this is a sign that the wheels should be aligned.
- If possible, try to get your wheels aligned at least every 6,000 to 10,000 miles, regardless of how the car rides.
Benefits of a tire rotation:
- Helps tire rotation: An alignment can easily take care of your tires, even when a rotation is performed.
- Warranty: Did you know that some lifetime warranties require you to get an alignment every so many miles? If you have a warranty, be sure to read the fine print to satisfy their qualifications.
- Handling: A tire alignment can greatly increase the handling of the car. You will find that it’s a lot easier to drive.
- Gas Mileage: Bad alignments can bring down your MPG. By aligning your wheels, your MPG can increase by more than 10 percent.
How can I save money?
- Check with a few shops in the local area. Dealerships as well as mechanic garages are going to greatly vary. Most of the time, you will be able to get a quote over the phone of what tthe shop is going to charge.