Getting your car's tires aligned is one of the most effective methods to maintain them in excellent condition and let them work at their maximum potential. How long does a tire alignment take?
The average time for this task is about 30 to 60 minutes from the moment you pull your vehicle into the garage until it can work.
The exact answer may vary depending on some factors. Let's check our guide for a detailed explanation!
How long does a tire alignment take?
The first factor is the type of alignment you want to take. There are three options, each with a different price tag.
1. Four-wheel alignment
The four-wheel alignment is the most thorough option. It entails correcting the balance of the car's four wheels. The process takes anything from 30 minutes to one hour.
Although getting all four wheels adjusted on your car might take up to one hour or more, it's well worth it to get the most out of the alignment of the tires, the elements of your suspension system, and many more.
This option is the most comprehensive and best solution for your car. However, you can find a faster and less expensive alternative.
2. Two-wheel alignment
A two-wheel alignment is a technique that only checks and fixes the alignment of the car's front wheels.
Although it is technically possible for only the back to be aligned, most two-wheel alignments are for the front.
You can see that this method is quicker than the previous one. However, it will still take up to 30 minutes or even more.
The most time-consuming part of this method is to set the process up and tear it down when the adjustment is done.
You should expect the process to take 15 to 20 minutes to set up and dismantle independently.
Two-wheel alignment does not save much time. So why do most drivers decide to align their two wheels instead of four? The shops recommend this method for two reasons.
First, it's faster, allowing them to perform more checkups throughout the day yet charging up to 75% less than a four-wheel solution.
Besides, some shops only have alignment equipment that can handle two-wheel checkups and fail to assess the car's rear parts.
3. "Toe-n-Go" alignment
You may just request a quick toe realignment on the front of the car only, and the job only takes 15 to 20 minutes. We call this method "toe-n-go."
We have this type of alignment because the toe appears to be one of the awful things that may chew up tires. It is also the most significant element of the balance in the long run.
However, it is not the only factor (others include caster, camber, and so on). The problem is that specific alignment tools will only indicate toe corrections, limiting the technicians' choices.
So, if the placement seems to have gone swiftly, request to check the before and after data. Then, ask the technicians to describe how they did the job.
However, keep in mind that the toe is the only adjustable item in particular automobiles.
Even if they're doing everything they can, it will still be like a "toe-and-go" adjustment.
This video shows you how the technician aligns your automobile. Please check to learn why each type of service requires a different amount of time to complete.
Procedures And Steps To Perform A Wheel Alignment by Michael Fleming
What makes a tire alignment take longer?
Apart from the type of service, below are the three most important factors that determine how long a tire alignment will take.
1. The type of vehicles you drive
The type of vehicle getting serviced on will certainly impact how long to perform this task.
For example, the alignment of a small car or coupe with regular 14- to 17-inch wheels requires significantly less time than aligning a vehicle with a larger tire size or a one-ton diesel truck with 35-inch tires.
Also, new cars are usually quicker to fix than older ones due to the size of everything beneath and how easy the different components are.
For example, it's super simple to service a Honda Civic. You also find the tie rods easy to access without doing much extra work.
Compared to a Ford F-250, Jeep Wrangler,... which requires a longer time to set up and has adjustment parts hidden behind the chassis and other major chassis components, the Ford, Jeep... needs more time to work on.
2. Condition of parts during alignment
Because of the quality of the components that you are fixing, newer automobiles are typically easier to align.
Newer bolts and nuts are one of the factors that make your tire alignment time faster. As a result, they are unlikely to erode, making the maintenance simpler.
The sleeves and nuts on your car might be rusty and seized. Hence, the adjustment will become more challenging.
If the situation is terrible and technicians worry about component stripping, they may need to use WD-40 lubricant or a torch to warm them up and loosen them.
This service will undoubtedly add effort and time to the alignment process, making tire alignment take longer.
3. Experience of repair staff
Last but not least, the technician's skills can significantly impact how long a service takes.
If the technician has excellent skills and more experience, he can complete the task quicker than those with less experience.
Consider the difference between an ASE-certified mechanic with 20 years of expertise and a who recently completed training.
Without having to look anything up or struggle to set it up appropriately, the ASE-certified mechanic should be able to make an adjustment within 30 minutes or even less.
However, the lubrication and alignment technician may need more time to set it up since he has to search for what equipment to use, where the customizable components are, and how to make changes.
As you can see, there will be the extra time the new technician spends on some tasks while the skilled one can complete them at ease. The beginner may need 60 to 90 minutes for service as a result.
Because the alignment will cost the same either way, hiring an ASE-certified mechanic will get your car ready faster.
How long does a tire alignment take? Well, you may have to wait for 30 to 60 minutes to get your car serviced. However, it will take longer or shorter depending on many factors, such as the service you choose and your vehicle type.
To save your time and give your car the best adjustment, try to hire a skilled technician to align the wheels.
Hopefully, you will find this article helpful. If you need any further information, please feel free to ask. Thank you for reading!