Wheel alignment refers to the positioning of each of the four wheels with respect to the body. Correct wheel alignment provides:
Light steering wheel handling
Positive steering wheel operation
Proper stability of steering wheel
Reduced tire wear When repairing a damaged vehicle, particularly one with a strut suspension, an error in body alignment will directly affect wheel alignment. Therefore, correct adjustment of body alignment is very important.
Tilting of the wheels from the vertical is called the camber angle.
Rearward tilting of the strut when viewing the front wheel from the side.
(As shown in the figure to the right, when caster is tilted rearward, the front wheels are pulled backward by the tires contact to the road. This reduces sideways vibration in the front wheels and also makes it easier for the wheels to recover their forward position after being turned. This "caster effect", helps keep the vehicle stable in the straight ahead position and improves steering correction.)
Inward tilting of the strut when viewing the front suspension from the front.
Toe-in refers to the turning in of the front wheels.
TOE-IN = B - A
Its purpose is to prevent slipping and scuffing of the tires on the road.
NON-STANDARD CONDITIONS CAUSED BY IMPROPER WHEEL ALIGNMENT
IMPROPERLY ADJUSTED CAMBER
Heavy steering wheel operation
Slow steering wheel return
Uneven tire wear
IMPROPERLY ADJUSTED CASTER
Excessive caster... Heavy steering wheel operation
Insufficient caster .. Slow steering wheel return
Imbalance between left and right... Car may be pulled to the side with the smaller caster angle.