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Alignment on 04 Civic

I bought my 04 Civic used in July 08 with only 18K miles. My miles are still low (not quite 41k) but I’m pretty certain I need an alignment due to the horrible roads I drive on daily.

Am I safer going to the dealership for the alignment or will I be safe enough going to a regular private mechanic?

Price is obviously a factor but I’m female and do not want to be taken advantage of, nor do i want new problems to ‘suddenly’ pop up. Other than the alignment my car is in great shape.

Dealers are no better at wheel alignment than others. If you have a mechanic you like who does alignment you can go there.

My local independent mechanic does the alignment on my cars. I generally avoid dealers like the plague.

Take a look at your tires, front and rear to see of they are wearing oddly. If not and if the car drives well; does not pull to one side or the other, you may not need an alignment but get one anyhow for peace of mind if that is what you want.

Then ask for the before and after alignment measurements, caster, camber and left and right toe for the front wheels. Get before and after camber and toe for the rear wheels as well.

Then you can decided if your driving habits warrant an alignment next time you want to worry. If you hit a huge pothole or hit a parking curb too hard, then you might need a front wheel alignment. Rears generally can stay good.