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Hunter Four Wheel Alignment
We have the latest Hunter Hawkeye Elite Four Wheel Alignment System which features Hunters patented Quick Grip Target Adaptors eliminating metal to metal contact between the alignment targets and your vehicles wheels, our system is regularly calibrated and updated with the latest manufacturer settings. For customers that require a bespoke alignment set up for fast road or track use, we have Hunters WinAlign Tuner Pro Software that allows us to set your car for optimum handling. For cars fitted with height adjustable coilovers, we offer corner weighting using our Quick Weigh system to ensure you get the very best out of your cars handling capability, our prices are as follows;
Quick Alignment Check £9.99
If you'd like just to find out whether your vehicle needs alignment, our Quick Alignment Check is the perfect solution, this takes just five minutes and provides you with a comprehensive report, we'll advise you on what's needed and if four wheel alignment is required.
Four Wheel Alignment £99.00
Our most popular package, it begins with one of our specially trained alignment technicians discussing how your vehicle currently handles, what you use your vehicle for (normal road use, fast road use, track use etc), our technician will then complete a short test drive to assess the vehicles currently handling and steering feedback then it's back to the workshop where the tyre pressures and condition are checked before the vehicle is loaded onto the alignment ramp. Our technician will complete a before measurement of your vehicles current alignment and than proceed to make the necessary adjustments, this usually takes up to an hour to complete, once finished our technician will complete a final road test to ensure the vehicle is handling as expected and the steering wheel is level. Priced at £99.00, this packages includes one of of labour, where vehicles require additional time due to seized components, the charge for this additional time is based on our hourly labour rate split into fifteen minute segments.
Ride Height Setup & Four Wheel Alignment £199.00
For vehicles that have height adjustable coilovers, our ride height setup and alignment package is the perfect option, it includes everything we offer with our four wheel alignment package plus the additional labour to correctly setup your coilovers, this package includes two and half hours of labour.
Cornerweighting & Four Wheel Alignment £249.00
For the serious track day enthusiasts out there we offer comprehensive geometry setup with cornerweighting, this ensures you're getting the very best from your cars coilovers and is an essential service if you're serious about track use.
For bookings or for more information just get in touch, below you'll find some further information about our alignment service.
Since the car was invented it has been important that all four wheels point in the same direction, over time as the car and its components have evolved, so has the way cars steering and suspension set up or geometry is measured. The modern car is built for comfort, performance and handling, in order to achieve and maintain the best ride possible, the steering and suspension needs to be measured and adjusted within the motor manufacturer’s specifications.
This can only be done by measuring all four wheels and having a proper full four wheel alignment measurement, if only the fronts are set straight, through having tracking, two wheel alignment, or toe & go, and the rear wheels remain out of alignment (and not adjusted), your car could still suffer tyre wear, pulling and crooked steering wheel.
How do I know if my car wheels are out of alignment?
A good question! it is not always obvious, especially if the misalignment is slight, but there are signs to look out for:
Uneven tyre wear on the fronts or the rears - If you can’t visibly see the wear, run your hands over the tyre and you can soon feel where the rubber has worn excessively, on the inside or outside edges. Warning – Be careful, in extreme cases of excessive wear fine wire may be protruding from the rubber.
The car pulls to the left and right - When driving along a straight flat road and you either need to compensate through the steering to keep the car driving straight the car drifts to the left or right under braking.
A crooked steering wheel - The steering wheel is not straight, even when driving straight.
What is the difference between tracking and four wheel alignment?
Tracking was born of a bygone era when cars had very little or no adjustment, any measurement and adjustment tended to be on the front wheels for the ‘Toe’ angle only. Tracking on the fronts sometimes called 'two wheel alignment' does not take in account the direction in which the rear wheels are pointing. So if you have the fronts adjusted and set straight whilst the rears are out of alignment, the car may pull and your tyres could still wear. In its original sense, tracking uses gauges (usually the hang-on style) where the operator peers through a ‘scope’ or views a light/laser beam on a scale. This system does not allow for run out compensation (taking account for any errors in the wheel rim), so the reading result can only at best be approximate.
Four wheel alignment measures a minimum of 12 angles and compares them to the alignment data specified by the vehicle manufacturer. Wheel rim run-out compensation is taken into account, which gives accurate and repeatable readings. With such accurate readings, four wheel alignment allows toe adjustments of individual wheels which ensure the steering wheel is set straight. Further adjustments of camber, caster and other angles (where necessary) can ensure optimum performance and savings.
Can you explain the Hunter Printout?
For each alignment package, you will be given a report generated by our Hunter system;
‘BEFORE’ – this shows the alignment readings of the vehicle straight ‘off the street’ with no adjustments.
‘AFTER’ – this shows the alignment readings, after adjustments have been made by our technician to get the alignment in line with the intended specifications.
The Hunter Alignment Report uses clear, easy to understand graphics. Each angle measured, such as Camber, Caster Toe, etc is represented by a box or bar with a black arrow ‘hovering’ above. The colour of the bar can either be red denoting that the angle is out of the manufacturer’s specification and therefore out of alignment or Green denoting it is within the specification and therefore the alignment is good, the black arrow indicates by how much the angle it is in or out of the intended specification.
The exact angle measurement figures are displayed centrally in the coloured bar, the small figures in the top left and right of the bar are the to and from tolerances of the intended specifications.
TIP: It is worth keeping all your alignment reports with your car documentation, as when it comes to sell your car, you can show it has been regularly checked and that the car is in good condition.
Wheel Alignment Jargon Buster
Toe is the angle of the wheels in relation to the vehicles centre line (an imaginary line straight down the centre of the vehicle, when viewed from above), just as the name suggests, imagine the pair of wheels (front or back wheels) as a pair of feet. When you turn your toes inwards and your heals out, this is what is know as Toe-in and yes, you’ve guessed it, when you turn your toes out and heels in, this is Toe-out. When this happens to wheels you end up wearing the edges of your tyres excessively, Toe in or Positive Toe causes your car to wear the outside edges and Toe out or Negative Toe your car will wear the inside edges.
Individual toe is measured from the vehicle centre line. Individual toe can be thought of as a ‘per wheel’ value.
Total Toe is the sum of two individual toe angle readings added together.
Think of Camber as the amount of ‘tilt’ of the wheel, one way or the other, positive Camber is when the top of the wheel leans away from the car, Negative Camber is when the wheel leans in at the top, the amount of tilt doesn’t have to be much and not always noticeable to the eye but it is enough to cause undue tyre wear and make the car pull.
The easiest way to understand Caster is to look at a bike (when viewed sideways on), if you draw a line down from the centre point on the handlebars down the forks to the ground (on a car this would be the suspension strut), this indicates the ‘pivot point’, then draw a second line vertical through the centre of the wheel and where this touches the ground shows the ‘tyre contact point’. The top angle that has been created is what is known as the Caster Angle, if this top angle is reduced then stability is less, therefore it is important to get the Caster set to its optimum angle for the best possible control.
Is literally just that! An imaginary line running down the centre of the car, from the front to the rear and equidistant from the sides.
Thrust angle is the direction the rear wheels are pointing in relation to the centre line. If the thrust angle is not zero the vehicle will ‘crab’ – move sideways from the back!
This is simply to ensure the steering wheel is set straight when the vehicle is travelling along a straight and flat road.
Often overlooked and often resulting in vehicle pull, Cross camber is the difference in camber from one side to the other, if each wheel is itself correctly in tolerance, but at opposite ends of the scale, then the cross camber will be high and might need attention. Some manufactures now specify this value, the car will tend, as a general rule, to pull to the side with the least negative or most positive camber.
SAI & Included Angle
Steering Axis Inclination (SAI) is the inward or side to side tilt of the suspension strut top towards the centre of the vehicle, and in all cases is positive. SAI is not altered in the aftermarket, only returned to the factory setting, perhaps following accident damage. SAI gives driver feel to the steering and assists in unwinding the steering after steering lock has been applied, bringing the steering back to the straight ahead. The Included Angle is calculated by adding the SAI and Camber Angle together.
Set back is defined, where one of the front wheels is sitting back (relative to the wheel on the other side), negative setback is the left wheel back (relative to the right), positive setback is the right wheel back (relative to the left). Set back would be identified when measuring the SAI and caster angles as the values would be too low and out of specification. Which side is set back or set forward can be established by reviewing which wheels castor angle is within specification.
The height at which the car is from the ground and essentially is measured from the ground to the underside of the car. Although some motor manufacturers ride hide height stipulations vary, eg BMW specify (for some models) from bottom of wheel rim to top of wheel arch. This is to check there is the same ride height around the car, as set in accordance to the manufacturers specifications and ultimately an accurate alignment measurement.