Are you noticing a vibration while driving? Talk to an automotive mechanic to weed out causing-shaking possibilities i.e. wheel alignment, engine or transmission problems, driveshaft and axle failures, suspension wear or too much road force weight on one or more tires can be the culprit of vehicle vibration. Road force balancers, in addition to traditional balancing tires, is to measure both the tire and wheel by pressing a big roller against the spinning tire’s tread. The roller applies 1,200-1,400pound (0.64 ton) pressure to simulate the vehicle’s weight on the tire as it rolls down the road.
Along with several sensors, it is a computer in the machine that determines variations of radial runout, tire stiffness, and anything in the tire’s assemblage (like inconsistencies in the belt package) that’s preventing the tires from rolling smoothly when weighted by the car.
By measuring both tires and wheel, the road force balancer tells the mechanic where to move the tire around on the wheel until the tire’s effective high spot (when rolling on the car) matches the wheel’s low spot – a more sophisticated technique of match-mounting.
Road force balancing tires is actually more complicated than that, but that’s the simplest explanation on how the machine functions. In extreme cases (and when necessary) a road force balancer can be used to run several tires across various wheels to discover the best possible wheel-tire combinations.
Benefits of Road Force Balancing
Performing this technique prior to installing any set of wheels and tires, provides car owners with the same level of ride-comfort previously available only to OEMs. Plus, as an extra benefit to tire dealers, many road force balancers can optimize the corrective balance-weights (also, called match mounting), which results in considerable savings (on average 30%) in the amount of weight used. It’s in the best interest of the car owner to consult with a tire and wheel professional when shopping for tires by vehicle or by size. Shopping correctly and installing a new set properly, can improve previous ride quality. Is your vehicle riding with a mix of tires? See what professionals have to say on mix tires.
Benefits of Road Force Balancing Tires
- Solves wheel vibration caused by rim and tire runout & wheel-mounting error
- Serves as quick troubleshooting/solution so you don’t need to wait in the shop for many hours
- Identifies vehicle drift or pull problems (it’s when your car veers if you take your hands off the wheel briefly while driving in a straight line)
- It results to remarkable improvement in handling and driving quality
Is Road Force Balancing Worth It?
Yes for many, but this isn’t for every car owner. While an overkill for most customers, match mounting or road force balancing tires is useful for extremely low-profile tires as well as in solving persistent vibration problems. For car owners who want optimum quality, it’s a maintenance service that cannot be overlooked. But for customers who are yet undecided on whether to spend the money, you can look around for discount tire road force balance costs and compare other shops.
How Much Does It Cost to Force Road Balance Tires?
Balancing wheels requires dismounting tires and spinning them, and it generally takes less than 30 minutes. More often than not, pricing may be regional, but average cost is $25 per tire.
What Do Road Force Balance Numbers Mean?
20+ pounds of road force is a lot and can be felt by a sensitive driver. In essence, road force places a number on how egg-shaped the wheel-tire assembly is (or how out-of-round it is). Each car varies on how much road force variation tolerance it has: some vehicles can handle significantly more, while some can only handle road force variations that’s less than 20 lbs. Diagnosing vibration issues, and having the lowest amount of road force on each tire will generally give you better ride quality.
What Causes Tires to Vibrate?
If at 40 mph (64.37 km/h) speed (or more), and your steering wheel vibrates, this means your wheel, tire, or possibly brake assembly is out of balance. This vibration is typically felt when sitting in the driver or passenger seat, or through the brake pedal. Vibration at higher speeds can also be caused by uneven tread-wear. Static imbalance makes a tire/wheel assembly vibrate up and down. Dynamic imbalance causes the assembly to shimmy from side to side. Other tire issues that can cause shaking i.e. low tire pressure, uneven worn, and near bald tires.