Many drivers will experience their vehicle drifting or pulling from side to side, but do not come to realize the huge risks to safety it poses. A vehicle that is drifting or pulling could be a sign of something worse to come. If the drive does not have complete control of their vehicle it could mean disaster in traffic.
The following is a list of reasons why your vehicle may be forcing itself side to side during your commute. If you are experiencing any drifting or pulling as you travel, schedule an appointment or visit your mechanic as soon as possible to fix the issue before you are paying huge repair bills or you find yourself in an accident.
A simple issue to fix if your car drifts or pulls is tire pressure. You should frequently check your tires to ensure they are at the recommended pressure levels. If one side is low in tire pressure, your vehicle will pull to that side. Though a simple fix, if you let the issue persist, your tires will begin to wear down which will lead to suspension problems and high repair bills. If your tires start to wear, this is going to change the weight shift in the vehicle, causing your car to pull. Not only do you want to keep up with tire pressure maintenance, you want to prevent your tires from wearing down.
An improper wheel alignment is another reason your vehicle will drift. Routine maintenance will prevent any alignment issues from occurring.
The engineering of the road can also cause your vehicle to ride off to the side on its own. Roads are constructed with an angle for water runoff purposes. Due to the angle of the road, your vehicle may drift.
A defective tire will also lead to drifting. Tire conicity is caused when the belts under the treads are not aligned properly. There is more belting to one side which causes a cone shape in the tire. This can be detected by feeling more of a pull the faster you go. Mechanics will switch the two front tires and see if the car drifts in the other direction to test this issue.
One New Tire
Getting a new tire may also cause problems when trying to keep the car between the lines. All tires should be the same and be made with the same tread marks. When putting a new tire into the mix, pulling and drifting will happen. It is recommended that when replacing tires, do two at a time and place them in the back.
You may also experience tire separation, which is very dangerous because the tire may blow out while in operation. This occurs when the belts under the treads separate from the tire. Tire separation can be detected by a shimmy or shake at low speeds.
Have you ever noticed your car drift in the same direction as a turn you just took? This is called Memory Steer and is caused by bad strut bearings, defective tie rods or binding ball joints.
The last reason your vehicle may be drifting on you is due to brake problems. Brake systems can encounter many problems that will cause brakes to stick and not release properly. Problems may be a sticking wheel cylinder, sticky caliper, hydraulic malfunctions and weathered suspension components.
A vehicle that drifts is a hazard on the roadway and to the driver. If you experience or are experiencing a pull from side to side, make an appointment or visit your mechanic right away.
If your vehicle is drifting or pulling and you live in the greater Boston area contact us at Collision 24 to have looked at by one of our experience staff members. Collision 24 is located at 97 Manley St. Brockton, MA 02301