You’ve probably noticed that when you drive on an old road, your car tends to follow the ruts and grooves in the road surface. When this happens, it can be hard to keep the vehicle going in the right direction.
“Traflining” is the term for how the car tends to follow ruts and grooves on the road.
The name for this thing came from the fact that it is like a tram driver who doesn’t have to steer because the tram follows the path set by the rails.
On some parts of the road, all vehicles experience the tramlining effect, which can be felt by the steering moving by itself.
When a bumpy expansion joint on the road is crossed, the steering feels a little different.
Even if you’ve been through it, you might have thought it wasn’t dangerous and you shouldn’t worry about it. Tramlining can be dangerous, though, at high speeds or when the road is wet.
Some people don’t know that they could have caused tramlining by making changes to their car. Also, it could be a sign that something is wrong with the car’s chassis. Let’s talk in depth about this:
Who is more prone to tramlining? (what causes tramlining?)
Upsizing and using low-profile tyres: Many people who upsize their tyres and use low-profile tyres on plus size alloys complain that the tramlining effect is more noticeable. This is because high-performance tyres with a low profile don’t bend as much and can’t absorb shocks from the road as well as high-profile tyres can. This makes the steering more responsive and lets the driver feel the bumps in the road. If you want to upsize, use the Upsizing tool to make sure you stay within the safe range.
Most BMWs come with run-flat tyres, which make it hard for drivers to avoid tramlining. The sidewalls of run-flat tyres are very stiff, so they can’t handle shocks from the road. This makes it more likely that someone will tramline. How to make tyres last longer
Bad suspension parts: The way a car handles ruts and grooves in the road is also affected by how its suspension parts work. The chain is made up of a lot of different parts, like suspension bushings, ball joints, and suspension mounts. Some of the suspension parts wear out as the car gets older.
This change is happening so slowly that it might be missed. If some of the suspension parts are worn out, there will be some play in the suspension. This lets the wheels move with the bumps in the road. So, replacing the worn-out suspension parts will get rid of the play in the suspension and stop the car from bouncing around because of bad suspension.
Widening Wheel Track: The distance between two wheels on the same axle is called Wheel Track. As the track of the Wheel gets wider, the tramlining effect gets stronger. If you use wheel spacers to move the wheels out a little to change the way the car looks or to make it handle better, keep in mind that it will make tramlining more likely.
Over-inflated tyres: Driving with high tyre pressure tends to make the tyres stiffer and less able to absorb road shocks. This makes the tramlining effect worse. Some of the problem will go away if you just adjust the tyre pressures as the manufacturer suggests.
Wheels that are out of alignment: The wheel alignment is needed not only to fix uneven tyre wear, but also to change how the car drives. Tramlining can be affected by both the camber and toe settings.
Extreme positive or negative camber makes it harder for the vehicle to follow ruts and grooves that run along the length of the road. With more camber, the contact patch in a straight line is smaller, and the wheels are better able to follow the bumps in the road.
Also, more toe-out settings make it easier for the vehicle to change direction, but they make it less stable in a straight line.
The camber and toe settings can be changed depending on where the car will be driven. If the car is used for racing, the settings can be on the extreme side, but for the street, it’s best to use the settings that the manufacturer suggests. Three things you should know about balancing and aligning
Keep both hands on the steering to control Tramlining
Even if the car’s chassis is set up well, the car may still tramline. Many drivers have the bad habit of only using one hand on the wheel, but it’s always best to hold the wheel with two hands in the 9 o’clock and 3 o’clock positions. This lets you see what the wheels are doing and give precise steering commands to change where the wheels are going.
Now that you know what causes tramlining, have you been able to figure out why this is happening to you? If not, leave a comment below and I’ll try to help you figure out how to fix the problem.
How do you fix tramlining?
If you have a lot of tramlining, you should check for these things: Tires that are too inflated, misaligned wheels, and broken suspension parts.
Are sports cars more susceptible to tramlining?
Yes, tramlining is more likely to happen in sports cars. That’s because the way their chassis is set up is more aggressive than a regular car. They have a tighter suspension, low-profile tyres, and a more direct steering feel. This set-up works best on a smooth, fast tarmac.