Pro-Align, which distributes Hunter wheel servicing equipment in the UK, has highlighted some of the potential consequences for CV fleets of wheel misalignment.
Accurate wheel alignment can cut running costs by reducing fuel consumption, tyre wear, vehicle emissions, and even driver fatigue, the firm says – but it warns that regular alignment servicing is often overlooked as the process can be time-consuming, while long-term damage caused by misalignment may result in increased vehicle downtime.
“Misalignment presents a number of issues for commercial vehicle fleet operators which is burning a hole in their pockets,” said Clive Seabrook, CEO of Pro-Align.
“As many as four in five commercial vehicles on the road are not regularly aligned, potentially resulting in significant unnecessary additional costs… [including] on replacement tyres and of course, fuel.”
Seabrook added: “There are a number of different ways vehicles can be misaligned, from general wear and tear through rough terrain and potholes, and kerbing issues resulting from loading and unloading, a common issue multidrop delivery vans encounter.
“With many commercial vehicles often accumulating big miles, it’s important that an alignment check is completed regularly to ensure that any negative impacts are minimised or avoided completely.”
In a direct attempt to overcome the time challenges, workshops equipped with the Hunter WinAlign HD alignment system can carry out fast and accurate wheel alignment diagnostics for multi-axle trucks in just four minutes, says Pro-Align.
Standard wheel alignment procedures require technicians to carry out 17 different operations, the company says, taking around 15 minutes – but with the Hunter system, only seven steps are required.
“With the addition of the dedicated Hunter commercial vehicle aligner in our workshops, we are able to identify wheel alignment issues for our customers in a fraction of the time we have before,” said Gavin Hewitt, aftersales director at Northside Truck & Van.
“Not only is it more efficient for our workshop, saving in time and labour, but it also gives our customers incredibly accurate results, every time,” he continued.
“The system’s customer friendly printouts allow us to illustrate any alignment issues that have been identified on the vehicle and have since allowed us to hugely increase our alignment job sales, all the while giving our customers peace of mind of a job well done.
“Having already reaped the benefits of the aligner at our Immingham site, we have now invested in further units at our workshops in Sheffield, Doncaster, Hull and Leeds.”