A note on Alignments, since I've seen a lot of posts and questions about them, that indicate a lot of folks just don't understand them.
The suspension on many cars is adjustable, adjustable in the sense you can change the relative angles of the wheels/tires to each other and the body of the car. i.e. align them. Not all cars, and often live axles (rear suspension of the Commander) have no alignment adjustments.
That is done by loosening bolts that hold the clamp the adjustment in place, then adjust the wheel/tire alignment using precision tools that measure its angles, then retightening the bolts that clamp those adjustments in place.
The purpose of this is to keep the wheel/tires closely aligned relative to each other and the body of the car. The vehicle will track/steer/handle better and the tires will wear slower and more evenly.
Knowing that, in an ideal world, once adjusted, the alignment would never need to be adjusted again. And its NOT that uncommon for mild duty of daily driving on smooth roads avoiding any accidents or jarring like pot holes or hitting curbs, a car can go its whole life without needing an alignment.
But some vehicles don't live in an ideal world and the suspension suffers a lot of jarring and shock from pot holes, running over obstacles, etc. The jarring and shock can overcome the clamp force of the bolts and move the adjustments, i.e. knock out the alignment. The suspension components can suffer damage, bend, the body/frame can suffer damage and bend/twist slightly, which then effects the relative angles of the wheels, etc....
The symptoms of the alignment "being out" regardless of how it got out, is like Sebaar said, the vehicle doesn't track straight, pulls to one side, the tires don't wear evenly or wear faster, vibration and shaking as well (just wheel balance can create vibe and shaking with a good alignment), poor handling, etc....
I can't say it is wrong to have a professional "check" or "align" your vehicle every couple of months. It certainly can't hurt. But it seems excessive to me. Of course, if you're doing some pretty abusive off-roading, that is excessive and perhaps checks every couple of months might be worth it.
Again, you can check the alignment yourself, cause if the alignment is knocked out, there is often clues. While don't have the precise tools to measure the angles yourself to make adjustments nearly as well as pro shop, simple tools can be used to measure well enough to tell if the angles are Definitely Out. As well, you could see it with the naked eye if its bad enough. Look for the symptoms while driving, the NOT tracking straight, pulling to one side, the steering wheel off center to track a straight line, uneven tire wire, etc.... If you see these clues, its time to get an alignment shop. If NOT, you keep an eye on tire wear, if it stays even, that is a good clue you have the alignment in.
Again, I really think you're getting a build up of mud on the back side of the wheel, where you can't see it unless you get on the ground and look up under the vehicle at the back side of the wheel. You get enough mud caked on there, unevenly, it will be enough weight to throw off the balance of the wheels and create the vibration you speak of.
You may also have worn out shocks that make the wheel imbalance impacts felt even worse within the car.
If I'm correct, you should only need to get a little wet using a high pressure water hose to wash all the mud out of the backside of the wheels and on the tires to fix the vibration.
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Last edited by Mongo; 05-03-2016 at 08:43 AM.