Wheel Balancing

Wheel balancing is the process of balancing the weight of a tire and wheel assembly so that it travels evenly at high speeds. Balancing requires putting a mounted wheel and tire on a balancer, which centers the wheel and spins it to determine where the weights should go. Every time a wheel is first mounted onto a vehicle with a new tire, it has to be balanced. The goal is to make sure the weight is evenly distributed throughout each of the wheels and tires on a vehicle. This process evens out heavy and light spots in a wheel, so that it rotates smoothly. If there is even a slight difference in weight in the wheels, it will cause enough momentum to create a vibration in the car.

What are the common symptoms indicating you need a Wheel Balancing

  • Vibration at the steering when driving at high speeds
  • Uneven tire wear
  • Reduction in ride quality

How it’s done

  • A tire mounted on a wheel is attached to a tire balancing machine.
  • The wheel is spun while vibration measurements are taken. This tells the mechanic if the weight is spread evenly, how much weight to add and where on the wheel to attach it.
  • If an imbalance is found, the mechanic may be able to rebalance and adjust the weights (adding more). But sometimes it requires the mechanic to also move the tire on the wheel and then rebalance. This is because a heavy spot on the wheel and on the tire can sometimes line up together, causing a greater imbalance that needs to be corrected.

How important is this service?

Vibration when underway could be caused by an imbalanced tire and wheel assembly or something else — a bent wheel, a damaged tire (which won’t be fixed by balancing), worn suspension parts or other aging components. If you feel a vibration, don’t wait to get it diagnosed. You’ll head off other problems — and enjoy a smoother ride — when your tires are well balanced.

 

Source: https://www.lesschwab.com/article/how-do-i-know-if-my-tires-need-to-be-balanced.html