Does Changing Wheels Affect Vehicle Alignment?

by Rae Castillon

Should you get an alignment with new wheels? If up- or downsizing, is it necessary? These are common questions, and the answer depends on what’s happening. Read on to learn about alignment and how it affects wheel selection.

Wheel Alignment: What Happens?

During an alignment, the suspension’s camber, toe-in, and caster are correct. The main focus isn’t the wheel, but how it works with suspension and steering components.

  • Camber is the wheel’s angle when viewed from a head-on position; it’s measured by the degree. If the wheel is angled outward, the camber is positive, and if it’s vertical, it’s neutral.
  • Caster is a reference to the angle of the pivot that’s attached to the suspension. When the wheel is turned, the pivot moves the wheel to the left or the right.
  • Toe-in is measured by the fraction of the inch and it’s typically almost zero. When this measurement is off, tyres wear unevenly.

Now that you’ve learned what changes during the alignment process, it may be easier to understand how wheel selection is affected.

Changing Stock For Comparably Sized Aftermarket Wheels

Say you’re planning to exchange your stock Ford Ranger wheels for something a little more upscale. When you buy wheels from us, every package comes with fast shipping and an installation kit. There’s no need to worry about proper fitment and alignment, as swapping OEMs for aftermarket wheels of the same size won’t bring any lasting changes.

Installing Bigger Wheels

Some people like the look of big Diesel wheels, and they do accentuate the appearance of some vehicles. It’s important to remember, however, that when the wheels are upsized, the tyres must be made smaller to keep the diameter constant. Because the overall diameter isn’t being changed, neither is the geometry, and the alignment will stay the same.

Going For Offset

Some drivers want to give their vehicles a new look by altering the offset. For instance, Niche wheels can be pushed out or brought in to give a deep-dish appearance. Dealing with offset can be tricky, though an alignment won’t be necessary unless the change in offset is extreme.


Slight changes in offset or wheel diameter won’t change the wheel and tyre package’s geometry, and the vehicle won’t need another alignment. The term refers to the suspension, not the wheels, and in most cases, changing the wheels won’t change much else. If you are interested in pricing, take a look at the wheel alignment cost at Walmart, its reasonable.

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