One of the more common services offered at most mechanics shops, tire stores, and other vehicle repair spots is getting tires balanced. But why is this service offered so much, and is it really all that important? The truth is that getting tires balanced is a really helpful process that should be performed regularly on any vehicle that is on the road. In order to really understand why getting tires balanced is so important, keep reading.
- What is balancing? Basically balancing is when your tires are properly weighted and...well, balanced, so that they rotate properly. When you get your vehicle tires balanced you are having your tires individually weighed, measured, and changed as necessary by a computer to receive optimal performance. Typically, this type of equipment can be found most often in tire stores, but some of the larger mechanic shops also have them.
- Why is balancing important? Have you ever had a washing machine get out of balance? When that happens you can usually tell by the loud banging and vibrations that are felt and seen in the machine as the drum whirls around. The same thing happens with vehicle wheels that aren't balanced properly. A noticeable sign of an imbalanced wheel is that the tires will make your vehicle shake and vibrate when traveling at highway speeds. This can in turn cause unnecessary damage to your vehicle in the wheel areas, which can lead to costly repairs.
- Routine balancing. Since it is so important, getting tires balanced should be done regularly and consistently. If you are a fanatic about keeping your tires in optimal working condition, then you can get your tires balanced every single time that you get your oil changed. However, you really don't need to do it as often as that. An average routine would be every other oil change. So in effect you would be getting them worked on every 6,000 to 10,000 miles, or every six months.
- When to get them checked. There may be times when you aren't able to stay within your routine schedule, and if those times come up you need to know what the signs are. Quite often a vehicle will need to get their tires balanced after having them rotated as well. Another time when you will need to get y our tires checked for balancing issues is when you end up feeling sudden vibrations in the steering wheel.