Interested in Auto Careers? Learn the Effects of Wheel Alignment on Advanced Driver-Assistance Systems

With the integration of Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS) increasing within today’s vehicles, ensuring that the technology is functioning safely and effectively is more important than ever. ADAS represents a set of technologies that work to support drivers by providing assistance with certain aspects of driving. ADAS typically includes features such as lane keeping assist, forward collision warning, lane departure warnings, rearview video system, automatic emergency braking and more. 

These systems are designed to create a more comfortable and safe driving experience – but for the technology to work correctly, there are a few different vehicle components that need to be in working order. As a notable example, the wheels must be accurately aligned in order for ADAS to safely control the vehicle’s movements. If you’re considering a career as a mechanic, explore the relationship between wheel alignment and Advanced Driver Assistance Systems below.

Advanced Driver Assistance Systems Explained for Professionals in Auto Careers

ADAS operates using a variety of sensors, cameras, lasers, and radars that allow these systems to know what direction vehicles are traveling and where a vehicle is in relation to other cars. These technologies enable the ADAS computer to process and account for the conditions on the road around them. One of the sensors these systems rely upon is the steering angle sensor. When the steering angle sensor is correctly adjusted, it’s able to make accurate predictions about the location of the vehicle on the road and make the calibration necessary to safely direct the vehicle. However, the position of the ADAS sensors may be changed during an alignment, affecting the performance of the ADAS. If you want to become a mechanic, read on to learn more about performing wheel alignments on ADAS-equipped vehicles.

Advanced driver assistance systems improve both safety and the overall driving experience

Why Is Performing a Wheel Alignment on an ADAS-Equipped Vehicle Different?

When a vehicle undergoes a wheel alignment, its wheels are adjusted to ensure that a vehicle drives in a straight line, rather than dragging to one side. Using a computerized process, the three angles of each wheel are adjusted according to the specifications of the manufacturer. If the wheels are not aligned correctly, the tires may wear prematurely and the safety of a vehicle can be compromised. However, when the wheels are aligned in an ADAS-equipped vehicle,  performing a wheel alignment, it may affect the angle of the system’s steering sensor. This means that professionals in auto careers must perform a specialized wheel alignment procedure on these types of vehicles. Instead of a tire adjustment alone, a wheel alignment procedure for ADAS-equipped vehicles calibrates the ADAS sensors, radar, and camera to reflect the changed alignment. 

ADAS-equipped vehicles may need to be recalibrated after performing a wheel alignment

Tips for Performing a Wheel Alignment on Vehicles with ADAS

In order to perform a wheel alignment on vehicles with ADAS, a traditional wheel alignment is performed first, after which the ADAS must be calibrated. When calibrating the ADAS, each sensor, camera, laser, and radar should be checked to ensure that it’s in the right position to correctly control the direction of the vehicle. If the system is out of alignment with the body of the vehicle, the ADAS could receive the wrong information, compromising the system’s ability to operate safely. As more and more vehicles today are equipped with ADAS, it’s important to build the skills necessary to calibrate these systems during your career as a mechanic. Once you have the necessary knowledge, you’ll be able to work with a variety of ADAS-equipped vehicles and help to keep drivers safe on the roads.

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