German auto repair service in Ann Arbor MI

Wheel Alignment Service in Ann Arbor MI

Michigan potholes are tough on vehicles! Pounding along rough roads requires a yearly wheel alignment. Make your tires last longer and get better fuel mileage.

Stadium Auto Service has the experience to do your wheel alignment correctly - on any vehicle - new, old, big or small. But we specialize in German autos, Audi, BMW, Mercedes-Benz, MINI, Volkswagen auto wheel alignment in Ann Arbor, MI.

Wheel alignment service is a major part of Stadium Auto Service. We have specialized in Ann Arbor MI wheel alignment adjustment since day one and continue to invest in the latest high tech wheel alignment tools, equipment and training needed for high end German vehicles.

And we keep up to date on the latest wheel alignment technology and methods. Stadium Auto Service has been doing computerized 4 wheel alignment in Ann Arbor MI since we opened. Vehicle technology has changed dramatically over the last 45+ years and we constantly reinvest in the latest wheel alignment technology and training to provide you with accurate wheel alignment. With such an extensive alignment history we know how to do a German vehicle wheel alignment right. At a competitive wheel alignment price in Ann Arbor MI.

Wheel Alignments at Stadium Auto Service

Our combination of the latest high tech equipment, the best ASE Certified Technicians, and many years of experience offers you unbeatable value and a wheel alignment done right - guaranteed!

Our wheel alignment cost is very affordable and we often have front end alignment promotions. We perform all types of auto wheel alignment including four wheel alignment on German import car wheel alignment, SUV wheel alignment, van wheel alignment, 4x4 wheel alignment, all wheel drive wheel alignment, and 4 wheel alignment. Stadium Auto Service can solve your Ann Arbor MI wheel alignment problem.

Wheel Alignment Includes:

  • Road Test before and after any adjustments;
  • Inspection of steering and suspension components: struts and shocks, springs, bushings, ball joints, control arms, tie
    rods, tires, wheels, wheel bearings, stabilizers, power steering system, mounts, axles, frame;
  • Inspection of wheels and tires. Check and adjust tire pressure;
  • Measuring alignment angles on front and rear axles;
  • Alignment adjustments (Depending on alignment service purchased)*;
  • Satisfaction Guaranteed!

*Alignment adjustment on some vehicles may require additional cost.

Wheel Alignment Benefits:

  • Increased tire life.
  • Increased fuel mileage.
  • Safe vehicle control.

Performance Wheel Alignments

Our high tech wheel alignment machine fits virtually any wheel (up to 24") without the worry of damage and will handle most over-sized tires and custom wheels. We can perform performance wheel alignments and custom wheel alignments, including most lowered vehicles, to customers specifications for obstacle courses or road courses such as Road America races, etc.

Our wheel alignment service details:

  1. Road Test Before and After
    We take the time to drive your vehicle to check how it steers and rides - before and after. A before and after test drive allows us to verify a problem and then check that it has been corrected. It’s just part of our quality control and what we do.
  2. Inspection
    We do a through inspection of steering and suspension parts and tires. Worn or damaged parts and tire problems make it difficult to correctly perform a wheel alignment. We know how to check the steering and suspension components correctly. Our extensive wheel alignment experience has taught us what part wear is allowable and what needs replacement. Inexperience may lead to unnecessary and expensive part replacement. You get value and savings from our long term wheel alignment experience.
  3. Alignment Measurement
    Do you need a four wheel alignment or just a front end alignment? Even if just doing a front wheel alignment we always check the alignment of all four wheels before making any adjustments. Since the rear wheels also affect how your vehicle steers and handles it is essential to check that the rear wheel alignment is also correct. It's the best way and what we do.
  4. Alignment Adjustment
    We make adjustments to bring your vehicle's alignment back to factory designed specifications providing you with safe steering, decreased tire wear, optimum fuel economy, and a comfortable ride.
  5. Satisfaction Guaranteed
    It’s your vehicle so it should drive and handle to your satisfaction. Although we tend to be more particular than most we will always seek your complete satisfaction.

Wheel Alignment FAQ

1) How often should you get a wheel alignment?

A wheel alignment measurement should be done once a year. Usually we recommend doing a wheel alignment in the spring when you do tire change over after the risk of hitting a curb in the slippery snow covered roads and after the pot holes have been repaired!

If you notice a change in how your vehicle steers or handles when traveling down the road you should get a wheel alignment inspection immediately. Normally wheel alignment gradually changes with normal wear and drivers don't notice the minor changes. If there is a sudden change in how your vehicle steers you may have a serious safety issue.

The other reason to get a wheel alignment is when the tires are replaced. A wheel alignment problem can destroy new tires very quickly. Also, new tire guarantees requires a wheel alignment check.

2) Why does a wheel alignment cost more on some vehicles?

The main reasons for different wheel alignment price:

  1. Four wheel alignment takes more time than a two wheel alignment.
  2. Wheel alignment on some vehicles is just easier to perform. For example a 4WD vehicle wheel alignment is more complex and time consuming than a simple rear wheel drive vehicle.
  3. Some vehicles have previous crash damage that makes alignment difficult and often more complex. Some damaged vehicles will need additional special parts or modification to perform a correct wheel alignment.
  4. Rust damage causes a wheel alignment to take more time or even require heavily damaged parts to be replaced before a wheel alignment can be completed.

All these reasons can cause a different wheel alignment cost. Often a final wheel alignment price can not be quoted until the vehicle is inspected.

Wheel Alignment Information

How do you know if you need a wheel alignment?

Wheel alignment should be done as a routine maintenance, when you buy new tires, or when you notice a steering problem.

The two biggest clues that a wheel alignment is needed are when the steering wheel is not centered or your vehicle pulls to one side. Another sign of wheel alignment problem is abnormal tire wear. Uneven tire wear like feathering or cupping are signs your vehicle needs a wheel alignment.

A wheel alignment is also highly recommend when new tires are installed. A wheel alignment will help protect your investment in your new tires and make sure they do not wear out quicker than they should.

Your vehicle’s steering and suspension play an important role in the safety of your vehicle. The steering and suspension system, together with tires, determine how your car will ride and handle. You should have both your tires and wheel alignment inspected at least once a year. To ensure vehicle safety and prevent expensive repairs it is highly recommended that routine wheel alignments, tire rotations, and wheel balancing be performed.

Wheel alignments should be done once a year.

Steering & Suspension

The suspension system connects the wheels to your vehicle's frame or body. The suspension system works with the steering system to provide vehicle control. When working properly, the suspension system smooths out road bumps and pot-holes and helps maintain vehicle stability and control. The steering system transmits your input from the steering wheel to the steering components to control the vehicle’s direction.

Wheel Alignment

A wheel alignment is a procedure to inspect, measure, and adjust all the steering and suspension parts that allow you to maneuver and control your vehicle. Stadium Auto Service has the latest wheel alignment technology and skills to keep your vehicle rolling straight & true. Using lasers & wheel mounted sensors we are able to consistently perform very accurate wheel alignments.

Benefits of Wheel Alignment

Maximize tire life by having your wheel alignment checked and adjusted every year. With the very expensive, specialized tires required on many of today's vehicles you want to squeeze out every last mile for maximum tire value.

Routine wheel alignment also decreases wear of expensive suspension parts.

Maximize fuel economy with yearly wheel alignments. If you have ever had shopping cart with a miss-aligned wheel you know how difficult it can be to push. Your vehicle is the same and will burn more fuel to push against wheel alignment problems. A vehicle with correctly aligned wheels will have the least rolling resistance and burn less fuel.

A safe vehicle is one that drives straight, does not wander, and goes where you want it to! With today's busy roads it is important that your vehicle does not drift into the path of other vehicles and is controllable in emergency situations.

Normal Wear and Tear

Steering and suspension components normally wear out over time and gradually affect wheel alignment. Each part has a wear limit which is inspected at each wheel alignment inspection. How long suspension and steering components last depends on the type of vehicle, how and wear it is used, and if regular maintenance is performed. Regular wheel alignment inspection and maintenance are critical to maintain vehicle safety and decrease long term repair costs.

Factors that affect suspension wear include:

  • Vehicle type;
  • Driving habits;
  • Road conditions;
  • Operating conditions;
  • Type of steering and suspension system;
  • Frequency of regular maintenance such as chassis lubrication and wheel alignment.

Steering and Suspension Wear Symptoms

  • Pulling;
  • Uneven tire wear;
  • "Loose" steering feeling;
  • Noise and vibration while cornering;
  • Wandering or poor directional stability.

Wheel Alignment Problems

Crooked Steering Wheel

Another sign of a vehicle that is out of alignment is that the steering wheel may be off-center while the car or truck is going straight ahead. A crooked steering wheel can also indicate bent or worn steering parts.

Uneven Tire Wear

Tire wear can have many causes. Some are related to wheel alignment problems, and some are related to tire pressure.

Common Tire Wear Causes:

  1. Tire wear resulting from wheel alignment problem. Usually caused by suspension and steering part wear or damage caused by impact or collision. The inside or outside of tire is worn off at a very noticeable angle.
  2. Tire wear caused by over inflation (tire pressure too high). The middle section of tire tread is forced outward by excess pressure and wears at higher rate than outside edges.
  3. Tire wear caused by under inflation (low tire pressure). The most common tire problem we see during our Vehicle Inspection service! Under inflated tires can not support weight of vehicle forcing middle section of tire tread inward causing excess wear of both outside edges of tire tread.
  4. Tire wear caused by worn out shock absorbers or struts and or incorrect tire balancing. Worn patches on tire caused by tire bouncing on road creating high stress and excessive tire wear. Caused by either incorrect tire balance or worn shock absorbers. Often out of balance tires cause shock or struts to wear prematurely which amplifies tire bounce and high tire wear.

Why is my car wobbling when I drive?

The most common cause of vehicle wobble is a bent wheel or damaged tire caused by a collision or hitting a pot hole. If you have hit something you should have a safety inspection and possibly a wheel alignment check.

The most common cause of vehicle shake is tire balance. Wheel balance weights can get knocked off if you hit a pothole or curb, or just fall off when they rust. They can also indicate a serious tire problem caused by a tire failure after a collision, hitting a pothole or curb.

Wheel wobble, shaking, or vibration are problems that shouldn't be ignored. They can be signs of a serious safety problem that shouldn't be ignored. A tire blowout is a serious safety risk.

How do you know if your tie rod ends are bad?

Worn tie rod ends cause excessive play or movement in the steering system.  Common signs of a faulty tie rod end include a front end alignment that is off, steering wheel play or looseness, and uneven or excessive tire wear.

Why do steering parts need to be replaced before a wheel alignment?

Steering parts such as tie rod ends and steering box connect the wheels together and keep them in alignment. When these parts get worn it is impossible to set the wheel alignment. Wheel alignment setting tolerances are very small and wear in steering parts makes it impossible to adjust alignment accurately.

Wheel Alignment FAQ

How Do I Know I Need An alignment?

If your vehicle won't travel straight down the road without you constantly steering it most likely needs a wheel alignment. If it wanders or pulls to one side it definitely needs a wheel alignment. If it tracks as straight as an arrow your wheels are likely properly aligned.

Even so, it's a good idea to have your wheel alignment checked annually.

Do I need an alignment after replacing tires?

You should have a wheel alignment when you buy new tires. This prevents excessive and uneven tire wear. Also many tire warranties require a wheel alignment with new tires.

Is it bad to drive a car with a bad alignment?

Driving with bad wheel alignment can be dangerous. Your vehicle can pull or drift out of your lane. Misaligned wheels can cause hydroplane and loss of control on wet pavement. Another sign you need a wheel alignment is uneven tire wear which can lead to a tire blowout or loss of traction in an emergency.

What causes wheels to go out of alignment?

The most common cause of wheel alignment change is a heavy impact caused by hitting something, such as a pothole, bumping a curb, or a vehicle collision.

Another reason for needing a wheel alignment is worn steering parts caused by wear and tear, or a lack of maintenance. Over time parts such as suspension springs can become tired and collapse, leading to a shift in the wheel alignment. Also, worn suspension bushings can cause a change in wheel alignment.

Do I need a 2 or 4 wheel alignment?

A 2-wheel alignment is also known as a front-end alignment and usually adequate for 2 wheel, rear-wheel drive vehicles. All-wheel-drive, or 4-wheel drive, vehicles with independent suspension require a 4-wheel alignment.

How long does wheel alignment take?

On average a wheel alignment will take about one hour, not including waiting time. If there is any damage or worn parts, such as ball joint, track rod, suspension or steering bushing, then it could take longer if parts need to be replaced.

Do I need an alignment after replacing brakes?

No. A front-end alignment is not required after doing brake service.

Is a wheel balance required to do a wheel alignment?

No. Wheel balance causes vibration problems and does not affect how straight the vehicle drives.