Car Pulls to One Side?

Car Pulls to One Side?
July 23, 2021
Car Pulls to One Side?

Learn to Diagnose Why Your Car Pulls to Left or Right When Driving or Braking

When your truck or car pulls to one side, and you’re fighting for control of your vehicle, it can be a terrifying experience. When you’re driving, you shouldn’t be struggling with the wheel to keep it straight. You’ll want to get this issue fixed fast, and to help you, we’ve narrowed down your problem to six possible diagnoses to help you get back on the road.

6 Reasons Your Car Pulls to the Right or Left:


  1. Uneven Tire Pressure - One of the most common causes of drift is uneven tire pressure. If you’re driving with at least one tire that’s overinflated or underinflated, your car can pull over to one side. If that’s the case, all you’ll need to do is add or release some air into your tires to even out the pressure. If the problem reoccurs, then your tire might have a leak that needs to be patched.

    If you’re not sure about the ideal tire pressure for your car, check your car’s manufacturer specifications. Most cars have a sticker on the door that tells you the ideal tire pressure too.

  2. Stuck Wheel Components - Sometimes your car can pull from side to side because of stuck wheel components. Maybe you have a stuck brake caliper or a wheel bearing that just won’t budge. To check whether your wheels are sticking, you’ll need to raise your vehicle and rotate each tire. The side the car is drifting towards is probably the side where the wheel is stuck.

    Your brake parts are an essential part of your car that allows you to drive safely. If you suspect anything is wrong with your brakes, you need to have them inspected. Make sure to get the hydraulic system and wheel cylinders checked too for additional damage. If you notice a burning smell when you brake, that’s usually an indicator these systems are damaged.
  3. Worn Steering and Suspension Parts - If your car is pulling over to one side when you apply your brakes, it might be an issue with worn-out suspension parts. When suspension parts get work out, they change position while you drive, which means that you’ll need to quickly pull on your steering wheel every time you press down on the brakes.

    If suspension parts are the problem, the pulling sensation will stop once you ease up on the brakes. In order to check for worn suspension, you have to grab your tire while your vehicle is raised, then wiggle the tire from side to side to feel if it’s loose or not. When a tire is loose, it’s sometimes called ‘excessive play’.

  4. Uneven Tread Wear Can Cause Your Car to Pull to One Side -Another possible culprit of your pulling problems? There could have been a defect when your tires were being made. If the belt in your tires slips, then it’ll pull apart from your tire frame, which causes your tire’s sidewall to weaken. Check your tires for abnormalities like bulges, ballooning, or a general appearance of warping.

    Another possible culprit is abnormal tread wear –that’s where areas on your tires are more worn than others. If you want to test for abnormal tread wear, you can swap out your tires and wheels and see if that fixes the pulling. If it goes away, then one of your tires was likely the problem.

  5. Wheel and Tire Alignment - If your car is pulling to one side while driving, you might need to have your wheels realigned. For safety, professional technicians always adjust your tires to make them straight as possible while you’re driving. One of the adjustments they do is called the camber adjustment, which is done to ensure none of your tires tilt outward or inward.

    There are other adjustments that can be done too. A toe adjustment is done so that the front of the wheel isn’t tipped. It won’t be the cause of your drifting issues, but a tipped tire leads to steering wheel misalignment. If your steering wheel is off, it’ll cause uneven tire wear, which is one of the potential causes of your car pulling. The toe adjustment is done by tightening or loosening your car’s tie rod ends.

    There’s also the caster adjustment, which makes sure that your suspension components and steering axis are at a right angle with your wheel. You can’t see it with the naked eye, but it’s still an important part of the alignment process. In order to notice caster adjustment issues, you’ll need an alignment machine.

Wheel Alignment Options?


All the adjustments mentioned above would typically require an alignment rack, which means you need to go to the mechanic. But if you can’t get it into the shop right away, some parts stores carry a string alignment guide you can use to do it yourself. It’s not a permanent fix, but it should help you for a brief period of time before you get your wheels properly aligned by a professional.

Shop for the Parts You Need

If your car is pulling to one side, needless to say, it’s dangerous to drive too far without fixing the issue. Visit to order all the parts a do-it-yourselfer needs to fix a car that pulls left or right on an even roadway. Contact us at (650) 560-HAWK if you have questions about fitment or the best parts for the job.

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