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Steering Problems? Wheel Alignment May Straighten Things Up

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wheel alignment des moinesWhen you turn the steering wheel on your car, it’s supposed be responsive and easy to handle. And with power steering, it should be. But if you struggle to keep your car from “wandering lanes,” or feel like you have to man-handle the steering wheel to simply control the car, you might have a wheel alignment problem.

After a long, cold Iowa winter, it’s not uncommon. There’s a good chance you slid on the ice while parking your car and bumped a few curbs, drove over a couple of potholes, rumbled your way across a bumpy stretch of road covered in patches of ice, or braked too hard after sliding into an intersection. All that wear and tear can take a toll on your tires and wheel alignment.

If your car steering seems to be “uneven,” pulling to one side, or handling poorly, here’s what you can do:

  1. Check your tires. Use a tire gauge to check the air pressure in each tire and make sure they’re inflated with the right amount of pressure. If you find a problem, add some air to the low tire.
  1. Inspect the tread on all four tires. Severely worn tires, or a mix-and-match or snow tires and all-season tires can effect steering. Replace your tires if you notice excessive wear, and use the same tire for all four wheels.
  1. Get your wheel alignment inspected. If checking your tire pressure and inspecting the tread don’t reveal any major problems, bring your car in for a wheel alignment and inspection. Fixing a wheel alignment-issue early on can often keep your tires from wearing down prematurely.

To find out if you need a wheel alignment, we’ll also measure tire pressure and inspect your tires. Then we’ll use diagnostic automotive tools to examine the toe-in, castor, and camber of each tire. Many times a wheel alignment is all you need to correct a steering-related problem to straighten things up.

In some cases, poor steering performance isn’t entirely caused by wheel alignment. Steering problems may also be linked to worn out struts or shocks, loose bearings, or damage to other steering components. If that’s the case, we can fix those problems too so you can drive with confidence and safety.

Reach out to Beckley’s today to schedule an appointment.  Call 515-243-8185 or simply click on the “Schedule Service” button to the right to get your car running right for spring!

 

Making Minor Car Repairs Can Save You In the Long Run

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There’s a minor car repair needed on your car, but it doesn’t interfere with driving, and seems more of a nuisance to fix than the time and cost involved. So you keep putting it off.

minor car repairSound familiar?

Maybe you’ve got a brake light out. One of the lights that illuminate your license place is burnt out. Or a turn signal works intermittently. So when it’s not working, you roll down your window and use hand signals when you’re making a turn. If you haven’t been that driver, you’ve probably seen someone on the road needing a minor car repair like this.

If Your Vehicle Isn’t Working Properly…

These kinds of minor car repairs are easy to fix and usually don’t cost a lot of money. But if you ignore the problem, it can cost you a lot more than you think. The Central Iowa Traffic Safety Task Force, Governor’s Traffic Safety Bureau, and Polk County law enforcement teams regularly organize extra patrols to enforce the law.  Something as simple as a broken taillight could turn into a hefty fine if stopped.

If you have one of those nagging car repairs you keep putting off, you might avoid detection for a while, but there’s always the chance that an officer might roll up behind you or spot you making a turn and discover a problem with your vehicle that you can be cited for. The more likely scenario is that you get pulled over for speeding, but instead of just getting a ticket for going over the speed limit, the fine gets a lot bigger for the broken tail light or faulty turn signal. It’s not a situation you want to find yourself in.

Increased Patrols Improve Public Safety

The periodic increase in patrols is an excellent public safety effort by law enforcement officers. It’s a great reminder to drive the speed limit, avoid texting while driving, and follow the rules of the road, which includes keeping your car in working order.

If you’ve got one of those minor problems that can be considered a violation, don’t wait for a citation to fix it. Bring your car in, or schedule an appointment through our Web site, and we’ll get you back on the road as soon as possible.