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Hidden Damages of Potholes

Beware of potholes York Region

The snow and ice may be gone, but that doesn’t mean that the roads are suddenly 100% safe to drive on. Potholes are still a concern, and are actually more dangerous than people realize.

While some damage from potholes can be fairly obvious, there can also a reasonable chance that a problem may arise without you knowing. Here are some of the things you should check out after running over a pothole:

Tires

While you could run into any number of issues from a pothole, tires are also the most susceptible to damage. Look for leaks or bulging spots, as these are the most common signs of impairment. There could also be a tear on the inside lining (you can find this by running your hand along the sidewall), and while this may not appear be to be a major problem, you could get a blowout if you have an impact on the same spot again.  You should also check your rims to make sure they aren’t damaged.

Alignment

Unless you know otherwise, you should take your car to a mechanic to see if your wheels have been misaligned. Constant wrestling with your steering wheel will be a dead giveaway, as your vehicle will try to pull you in a particular direction.

This may not seem all that bad, but a number of problems can arise from misaligned tires. Your tires will wear unevenly, you’ll increase your odds of getting a flat, and your tires could wear out prematurely.  its recommended to have a wheel alignment at least once a year.

Oh, and your fuel economy may also take a hit as a result.

Shocks

Your shocks work to keep you stable when you run over a speed bump or pothole. However, if all four shocks don’t work together, you’re in for some trouble.

Similar to a misalignment, damaged shocks can lead to bigger problems, such as uneven tire wear and decreased fuel efficiency.

If you aren’t sure whether your shocks are damaged, there are some telltale signs. If your car begins to sway when you make routine a turn or if you sink back while accelerating, there could be some damage to your suspension and shock absorption systems. And obviously, if you feel excessive shock when driving over bumpy roads, you definitely have a problem.

Avoiding potholes

The easiest way to side-step any costly damage is to avoid potholes altogether. The faster you go, the more damage you’ll sustain. You’ll have an easier time identifying potential potholes if you slow down and drive around them. Avoid unnecessary braking, as you could cause damage to your suspension when stopping over a pothole.

If it’s raining out, you should be aware of puddles, especially if you’re in cottage country. You won’t know how deep they really are unless you drive over them, so it’s best to just go around.