5 Parts On Your Car That Get Wrecked by Potholes
Spring has sprung! That means a fresh new set of potholes to ruin your commute. We all know they can be bad news for cars, but if you’ve recently hit one (or two, or three) of those dastardly potholes, here are the components of your car you might want to check. Tires Your tires will absorb most of the brunt of the impact when you roll over (or into) a pothole. The dramatic bounce is far more punch than most tires were designed to take. Some of the common injuries to a tire are: flats, tire separation and sidewall bulges. The sharp edges of a pothole can compress the tire against the rim of your wheel, which can separate the different sections of a tire from one another. In general, holes or cuts to the flat part of the tire that connects with the road can be patched or repaired. Punctures to the sidewall of the tire, however, mean it’s time for a new tire. Many businesses such as Discount Tire or Costco offer insurance packages for tires. If you live in an area that sees a lot of temperature variation in winter and spring, this is a solid investment. Exhaust As one of the lowest-hanging parts of your car, the exhaust pipes are very susceptible to road damage. Especially in the case of deep potholes, which can cause your car to bottom out and scrape against the road. This can result in a dent or tear in your exhaust pipes, catalytic converter or muffler. This can be more than just annoying. A hole in your exhaust system could potentially pump exhaust fumes and carbon monoxide into the interior of your car, a very dangerous situation. Wheels Potholes often have edges around them which are uneven, sharp and protruding, all of which are bad things for your car’s wheels. If you hit the right size and shape pothole going fast enough, you could potentially severely dent the wheel of your car. This would, in turn, cause damage to your tire and to the rest of your vehicle. You’d notice a dent in your wheel almost immediately, as the car would likely start to “pull” one way or the other. Suspension Most car suspensions, especially on your average sedan or non-off-road vehicle, are meant to be driven over relatively flat and even surfaces. While they can typically handle the occasional bump or dip in the road, potholes provide a unique and unexpected kind of impact. Your car’s suspension is a little like your leg. When you’re running over even surfaces, there’s no problem. Step on or in something unexpected, however, and you could severely injure yourself. Cars run the risk of denting, misaligning or even snapping a strut when they go into potholes. Fortunately, we have everything you need to replace that strut or your entire suspension without breaking the bank. Search our inventory to see if we carry a kit for your car here. Alignment This is one of the more common problems you’ll face if you hit a big enough pothole. Your car’s steering will naturally go out of alignment over a long enough period of time. However, running into a pothole provides a serious jolt to all the components which are responsible for your car steering properly. You will know if your car is out of alignment if it starts to pull or tug in one direction or another when you are driving down a straightaway. Fortunately, this is a pretty easy and inexpensive fix at most repair shops. At Strutmasters we are all about saving our customers time, money, and frustration. Don’t ignore problems caused by potholes. They will only get worse. Help other drivers, too! Report potholes to your local transportation bureau so that they can be fixed.