Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls

What Is Tire Camber?

Tire Camber

You’ve probably never considered how your wheel stays upright. There must be something in there that holds it in place, but you’ve never given it much thought. It just bolts in place, right? In fact, there are angles that come into play that you have never considered. The angle of your wheel compare to the road is called tire camber.

Tire camber defined

Camber is the angle of each wheel in relation to the road. Specifically, camber is how much inward and outward tilt each wheel has when the wheels are pointed straight ahead. The angle is measured on the vertical axis. There are three situations of camber:

  • Positive camber is when the top of the tire is tilted further out than the bottom of the tire. It allows for easier turning, and is especially useful on off-road vehicles and large machinery like tractors.

  • Zero camber is when the tire rests flat on the ground; it has the highest possible contact patch with the road surface. It’s used for the best acceleration in a straight line, like on a drag strip.

  • Negative camber is the most common camber setting for passenger vehicles. As the tire rubber tends to roll when cornering, it is offset by negative camber. It improves grip when cornering, and gives greater steering feel. When too much negative camber is applied, steering tends to feel stiff and unresponsive to input.

How does it affect me?

Tire camber dramatically affects the safe operation of your vehicle. When your steering feels too loose or too tight, it makes driving difficult. Excessive negative camber or positive camber will wear your tires unevenly, and cause excess strain on your suspension components.

If you have impacted a curb, a large pothole, or have had an accident, there is a good chance your tire camber is affected.

How do I know my tire camber?

Tire camber is hard to see with the naked eye. Unless your camber is significantly out of specification, you won’t be able to tell unless you have a wheel alignment performed. It’s time for a wheel alignment to correct your tire camber if you notice any of the following:

  • Steering your car is suddenly more difficult
  • Excessive or uneven tire wear
  • Damage to a tire or wheel
The statements expressed above are only for informational purposes and should be independently verified. Please see our terms of service for more details

Skip the repair shop, our top-rated mechanics come to you.

At your home or office

Choose from 600+ repair, maintenance & diagnostic services. Our top-rated mechanics bring all parts & tools to your location.

Fair & transparent pricing

See labor & parts costs upfront, so you can book with confidence.

12-month, 12,000-mile warranty

Our services are backed by a 12-month, 12,000-mile warranty for your peace of mind.

Get A Quote

Ask a Mechanic
(100% Free)

Have a car question? Get free advice from our top-rated mechanics.

Ask A Mechanic
Over 10,000 questions answered!

Need Help With Your Car?

Our certified mobile mechanics make house calls in over 2,000 U.S. cities. Fast, free online quotes for your car repair.


Post a question and get free advice from our certified mechanics.


More related articles

P0121 OBD-II Trouble Code: TPS "A" Circuit Range Performance Problem
P0121 code definition Throttle Pedal Position Sensor/Switch (TPS) A Circuit Range Performance Problem What the P0121 code means P0121 is a generic OBD-II code which indicates that the Engine Control...
P0608 OBD-II Trouble Code: Control Module VSS Output "A" Malfunction
P0608 means there is an malfunction in the vehicle speed sensor A control module often due too faulty speed sensor or shorted electrical wiring.
P0684 OBD-II Trouble Code: Glow Plug Control Module to PCM Communication Circuit Range/Performance
P0684 code means there is a failing connection within the Glow Plug Control Module often due too corroded wires and solenoid failures.

Related questions

Q: What is Tire Camber?

When talking about your alignment, you may hear terms like camber, caster, or toe. These are all angles that are built into your suspension that affect the way that your vehicle drives, handles, and how the tires wear. Over time...

Q: Wheels need alignment

A wheel alignment is considered general maintenance and should typically be done once a year. A qualified technician will be able to check alignment and perform the alignment if it's required.

Q: While highway driving, rear tire blew out

The rubber tires on any vehicle can experience a blowout under a number of conditions. If the tire is low on air pressure, the added grip causes more friction, heat, and wear. If a tire has an unseen injury, a...