It’s obvious when you hit a pothole, but any damage your car suffers may take longer to reveal itself. Potholes can do more than spill your coffee and make you bump your head. This blog will explain what can happen to your car after hitting a pothole.
How Do Potholes Form?
Potholes form when water seeps into cracks in pavement and softens the ground underneath. This can cause the road to cave in from the pressure. Potholes are more common in colder climates, but we still see them here in Atlanta. They can seriously damage your vehicle, so check the following areas of your car after you hit one.
Tire and Wheel Damage
Tires and wheels suffer the most damage since they are the first point of contact with the pothole. Assuming your tire doesn’t blow out on impact, the damage to your tire may go unnoticed if you don’t know what to look for. Look for any bulging on the tire rubber sidewall and check if the metal rims are bent, cracked, or broken. Driving on compromised tires makes you more susceptible to a blowout, so be sure to repair or replace any damaged tires immediately!
Suspension and Steering Damage
Does your car drift to the left or the right when trying to drive straight? Perhaps you hit a pothole, and now your car is making noise. Hitting a pothole can misalign your suspension or steering, which can cause both of these to happen. Suspension and steering damage may also cause your vehicle to vibrate while you drive and can wear down your tires faster than usual.
Undercarriage Damage and Leaks
Your undercarriage may have scraped the road depending on how deep the pothole you hit was. Check out your exhaust pipes, oil pan, and muffler for cracks or dents. Leaking oil and fluids should be fixed as soon as you can. The exhaust and mufflers directly correlate with fuel efficiency, so you’ll want to get those repaired soon.
Tips To Minimize Pothole Damage
- Make sure your tires are correctly inflated and in good condition.
- Drive slow and defensively on unfamiliar and rough roads.
- Be alert and keep your distance between the car in front of you.
- Remember – there may be more than one pothole.
- When you can’t avoid a pothole, take your foot off the gas and hold your steering wheel tight. DO NOT BRAKE. This will give you the most control through impact.
Contact McCullough NAPA After You Hit A Pothole
The ASE-Certified technicians at McCullough NAPA Auto Care can inspect your car after hitting a pothole. We know what to look for regarding pothole damage and can offer recommendations for tire repair, alignment work, and more. Give us a call or send us a message to schedule your appointment.