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Old 10th September 2007, 23:36   #1
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Question Wheel alignment or wheel balancing??

Hi guys....

Before I start, I better give a little bit of history.

Between 8000-10,000 kms, the steering wheel of my car used to vibrate quite badly when I hit 130-140. But after the 10,000 kms service, everything was fine. I figured it might be due the wheel alignment done during the 10,000 kms service.

Again, between 18,000 and 20,000 kms, the vibrating problem resurfaced when I hit 130-140. And I thought it would go away once the wheel alignment was done during the 20,000 kms servicing.

Which brings me to my problem. I just took my car for its 20,000 servicing. And all the usual stuff was done. Engine oil, brake fluids, oil filter, wheel alignment, tyre rotation,etc, etc. However, the steering now vibrates real bad when I hit 100-110!!! I enquired with the service engineer and he says wheel alignment only ensures the car doesnt pull to the left or to the right. If I have to prevent the vibration, I have to get the wheels balanced! And the reason for the vibration to kick in early is probably due to the wheel rotation.

So what do you guys think? Is the service engineer right? Should I get my wheels 'balanced' (never heard of it before) or should I go over and give him a piece of my mind?

Btw, I went for Shell Helix synthetic oil instead of the usual mineral oil. Should I get it changed after 10,000 kms or can I use it for longer?
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Old 10th September 2007, 23:41   #2
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check this out leo Wheel Alignment and* Wheel Balancing
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Old 10th September 2007, 23:44   #3
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Get the balancing done and surprising that you havent heard of wheel balancing .

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Btw, I went for Shell Helix synthetic oil instead of the usual mineral oil. Should I get it changed after 10,000 kms or can I use it for longer?
How much was it per litre?
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Old 10th September 2007, 23:46   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by leodelg View Post
wheel alignment only ensures the car doesnt pull to the left or to the right. If I have to prevent the vibration, I have to get the wheels balanced! And the reason for the vibration to kick in early is probably due to the wheel rotation.

So what do you guys think? Is the service engineer right? Should I get my wheels 'balanced' (never heard of it before) or should I go over and give him a piece of my mind?
He is correct, its wheel balancing and can be due to rotation that it got fixed, as tyres wear balancing becomes essential.

Vibration is caused by faulty wheel balancing or weak suspension, steering parts or completely worn out tyres (in which case balancing also might not help).
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Old 10th September 2007, 23:55   #5
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faced the same prob when i got a new set of tyres for my zen...used to vibrate after hitting 90...went to the guy who put the tyres..he balanced the wheels for free....and prob solved...

even i am surprised that you have not heard of balancing, it is pretty common
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Old 11th September 2007, 00:11   #6
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Any idea where I can the wheel balancing done? Also, how much would I have to shell out for it?

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How much was it per litre?
It depends on your luck

The engine oil is available only in 1 litre bottles. When I picked it up (from the Shell outlet near SAP Labs, Whitefield), there were 2 different batches present. One batch had an MRP of Rs. 660/- per litre and the other batch had an MRP of Rs. 700/- per litre. Luckily for me, there were just enough bottles of the 660 batch! hehehehehe....... So I had to shell out Rs. 2640/- for 4 litres.

Btw, any idea when I should change the engine oil next?
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Old 11th September 2007, 00:16   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by leodelg View Post
Any idea where I can the wheel balancing done?
loads of places incuding your dealership, madhus near richmond is one i suggest, each wheel will cost 40 to 50 rs plus the weights, under 60 to 70 bucks per wheel max, only front wheels need balancing if you have a semi independent or fixed rear axle
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Old 11th September 2007, 00:18   #8
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Yes the wheel balancing should be done if there is vibration.i had this same problem Once after balancing it was perfect
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Old 11th September 2007, 07:51   #9
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leodelg, I do Rotation, balancing & Alignment every 5000km and hence stay away from these vibration...
I suggest the same for you as well...and ya, the service manager was right !!

Abhi
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Old 11th September 2007, 09:00   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jaggu View Post
only front wheels need balancing if you have a semi independent or fixed rear axle
IMHO all wheels need balancing esp as you are going to rotate them.
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Old 11th September 2007, 10:23   #11
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I am yet to find a Wheel alignment person in Bangalore who uses Torque wrenches to tighten the wheel nuts. Only top professional setup has these kind of tools. Most Bangalore alignment folks tighten with a spanner and spoil the wheel nuts and sometimes the bolt itself.

Who in Bangalore has torque wrenches or spanners that give the right torque?
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Old 11th September 2007, 10:32   #12
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It is a better practice to do Wheel Balancing, Rotation and Alignment every 5000 - 7000 kms.
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Old 11th September 2007, 10:40   #13
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@leodelg
Get wheel balancing , alignment done
Also get your wheel bearings checked...
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Old 11th September 2007, 11:53   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by leodelg View Post
Any idea where I can the wheel balancing done? Also, how much would I have to shell out for it?
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jaggu View Post
loads of places incuding your dealership, madhus near richmond is one i suggest, each wheel will cost 40 to 50 rs plus the weights, under 60 to 70 bucks per wheel max, only front wheels need balancing if you have a semi independent or fixed rear axle
yes ... good suggestion Jaggu !! seeing as that's my dad's shop :P

But yes, your problem is due to wheel balancing. If you are using alloy wheels, make sure they use sticker weights. the normal weight can sometimes cause scratches on the surface. The sticker weights are marginally more expensive...but not by much.... very negligible.
And yes, get all your 5 wheels balanced. I say 5 because in case you have a puncture and you use the spare wheel, that could give you problems if it isnt balanced.
@leodelg --- Where do you stay ?

Last edited by Nikhilb2008 : 11th September 2007 at 11:55.
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Old 11th September 2007, 12:08   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jaggu View Post
madhus near richmond is one i suggest,
Would second that. They are pretty good. Been going to them for past 20k kms. I do wa/wb/wr every 4k.

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Originally Posted by DieselFan View Post
Who in Bangalore has torque wrenches or spanners that give the right torque?
The above mentioned guys have them.
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