What is Road Force Tire Balancing and why is it better than regular Wheel Balancing?
Have you ever been driving along the highway and thought “why is my steering wheel vibrating?” Vibration in your steering wheel is often a sign that you: (1) have a wheel imbalance or (2) there is a road force variation causing vibration while driving.
What causes wheel vibration?
Many things can cause excessive wheel vibration.
- One variable that causes vibration is the wheel being out of balance. Dynamic wheel balancing involves measuring any tire imbalance left to right and top to bottom, and then correcting the imbalance by adding weights to the wheel rim. For most tire stores, this is the extent of their “Tire Balancing” service.
- But another issue could be causing the tire vibration – and that is road force variation. Every tire and every wheel have slight imperfections that keep them from being perfectly round. Variations can occur in roundness of the shape, in uneven tire tread, or in uneven stiffness of the tire sidewall.
As a tire rolls, it flexes like a spring. Variations in shape or stiffness can cause vibrations because the tire is not perfectly uniform. Simply stated: the rounder the tire, the more smoothly it can roll along. When a trained technician ensures that the tire is balanced and as round as it can be, fewer uneven spots are felt by the driver in the form of wheel vibration.
So what does a Road Force Wheel Balancer do that is so much better?
Only a Road Force Tire Balancer can measure tire and wheel variations and pinpoint needed corrections. Lee Myles Auto Care & Transmissions’ Road Force Wheel Balancing machine enables us to simulate the actual force the road applies against the tire. As the tire spins against the loaded Road Force roller, the machine identifies the ideal amount and sizes of weights to be added. Utilizing a laser indicator, the Road Force machine shows the optimal placement where wheel weights should be attached.
But even beyond the precise application of wheel weights, the Road Force Tire machine can help a tire technician make the tire and wheel as round as possible while driving – through Force Matching.
“Force Matching”… What does that mean?
The Road Force Balancer identifies high and low spots in the tire and wheel rim so that – if necessary – the technician can shift the tire’s placement on the rim. Our “Force Matching” Service involves dismounting and remounting tires from the wheel rims in order to align the highest or stiffest point of each tire with the lowest point on its rim. Adjusting the position of the tire helps minimize variations in uniformity, creating a rounder tire and smoother ride.
Diagnosing a Defective Tire
The Road Force Balancer also enables the tire technician to reliably identify a defective new tire that has been shipped from the factory. Tire stores and auto repair shops that do not have this Road Force technology can spent countless hours – often inconveniencing the customer with multiple visits – to chase vibrations that can never be effectively eliminated.
Ride Quality you can FEEL!
This advanced Road Force Wheel Balancing technology enables our Lee Myles Auto Care & Transmissions technicians to make each tire as well balanced and round as possible as it rolls along the road. We have the ability to optimize the smoothest ride possible for any particular tire. Road Force Tire Balancing and Force Matching can go a long way toward restoring your ride quality to that “new car feel.”
AND BONUS – keeping your wheels properly balanced protects both your tires and your steering-suspension components so they can all last longer!