Frequently Asked Questions

Centramatic Wheel Balancer FAQ

By using centrifugal force the free moving weights (durametal and synthetic fluid) sealed in the balancer automatically distributes to exactly where needed, placing the assembly in equilibrium or perfect balance. When a sprung assembly is out of balance, deflection is caused via the springs or tire sidewalls. These free moving weights sense this deflection and move opposite the heavy points to balance the entire assembly, wheels, tires, drums, hubs, even mud, snow or ice stuck to the wheels.

In most cases, pre-balancing is not required. However, if a vibration still exits after installation, a computer balance of the problem position can indicate a mis-mounted or defective tire, a bent wheel or other "out of round" condition, which balancing alone cannot correct. Wheel bearings should also be checked and defective parts replaced.

This problem can be found by inspecting the area where the wheel and tire meet. A guide rib or circumference ring is molded into the sidewall of the tire. Measure the distance from the wheel to the guide rib (approx. 1/2 inch depending on tire brand), at the top, bottom and both sides, a variance in this distance indicates a mis-mount. A mis-mounted tire will roll out of round. This leads to erratic tire wear and vibration, regardless of how well it is balanced. Reseating the bead properly corrects the problem.

Our balancing media consists of two parts. Part one is durametal, a hardened alloy similar to shot but 10 times harder. This is primary media, as a solid cannot change shape or form under centrifugal force. It remains exactly where needed under high speed. Part two, the dampening fluid is proprietary synthetic oil, designed to operate in the most extreme environments. The rings are about 1/3 full of this fluid. Its function is to lubricate, dampen vibration and help balance. However, a liquid alone would merely flatten out under centrifugal force at high speed and be forced back around the ring to an undesirable position. That’s why we use the benefits of both solid and a liquid.

Absolutely, the largest investment in tire dollars are on the rear. Typically, even when loaded, duals carry less weight per tire and are prone to pounding. This causes excessive heat build-up and excessive, erratic tire wear. Centramatics help cool the duals and one pair of balancers handles four tires, wheels, hubs, and drums. Rear drums are a major cause of imbalance on dual assemblies.

Depending on the severity. Tires that are severely cupped will receive marginal results. While tires that are slightly cupped will true out. The balancers cannot grow rubber back where it is gone nor will it make the deeper tread wear faster. One or the other would have to occur to be able to correct severe tire cupping.

Simply remove the wheel, use the bolt holes as guides and reinstall the wheel. Steer axle balancers mount between the hub and wheel, while balancers for the duals mount between the dual wheels.

Most models start working at 20-22 mph depending on wheel diameter. This occurs long before vibration due to imbalance, which is at speeds in excess of 35 mph.

We have balancers with 1,439,716 miles on them and still in good working condition. That’s why we have a 5-year unlimited mile warranty and offer unequaled service.

Alignments control the direction and travel of the tires. Vehicles must be aligned by creditable alignment facilities to exacting specifications. Pre-mature tire wear and resulting vibration occurs if proper alignment is not maintained. Worn, loose or missing suspension components must be replaced. Centramatics balance the assembly and cannot correct alignment issues. Many forms of tire wear and poor handling result from mis-alignments.

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