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A little veer isn't weird

Question : I OWN a 2002 Perodua Kembara which was purchased new. After fitting four new tyres about three months ago, the car tends to veer to the left. The car was returned to the workshop that fitted the tyres for realignment.

However, in spite of this, the car still veers to the left, but only slightly this time around. The vehicle was subsequently returned to the workshop that confirmed that the suspension is in perfect alignment. A second opinion by another workshop confirmed that there was no misalignment.

Please advise if there is indeed a problem, as I have not noticed this before the new tyres were fitted.

Answer : WHEEL alignment is an important factor in maximising the service life of tyres and ensuring a vehicle handles properly.

Poor alignment means that the forces acting on the four corners of the vehicle are unequal, resulting in a potentially dangerous situation.

Tyre or suspension alignment should be checked at least once every 20,000km, annually or whenever the tyres are changed or rotated. Checking of the vehicle alignment ensures that any damage to the undercarriage of the vehicle is brought to light as soon as possible and rectified at the first possible moment.

Three types of wheel alignment operations are possible - toe-in/toe-out, camber and caster adjustment.

Of the three, toe-in adjustment is the most common since, for many modern vehicles, the caster and camber are fixed during manufacture.

Incorrect toe-in/toe-out adjustment results in the vehicle veering to one side.

In your case, numerous work- shop technicians have confirmed that your vehicle suspension is in alignment, yet you are experiencing a slight pull to the left side.

This may be a natural occurrence on some roads since most road surfaces are deliberately sloped to the near (left) side to allow for drainage. Hence, the amount of pull will depend on the incline of the road surface.

You may want to test this theory by driving on various road surfaces to see if the amount of pull toward the left varies. If it does, you can be reassured that the veering of your vehicle is due to the road surface, rather than the condition of your vehicle.


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