Your Car and Potholes: The Known and Unknown Damages
What is a Pothole?
If you’ve ever experienced a pothole, you know they can get in the way of both your driving and your daily life. If you live in a cold-weather area of the country, you may notice that your roads are particularly susceptible to pothole damage. This is because of the way potholes are created. When water freezes in cracks in the road, it expands and causes weak spots in the pavement. As vehicles drive over the weak spot, erosion and damage occur, leaving holes in the road.
We know the frustration these holes can cause—our tips for when you hit one can help get you and your vehicle back on the road.
I hit a pothole, now what?
DAMAGES YOU CAN SEE
A Flat Tire: If you see a flat tire, call our 24-hour towing service, TOW365 at 1-877-GYR4TOW, to get your car to the trusted technicians at your nearest Just Tireslocation. We’ll examine your tire and, if we can repair the tire without replacing it, we will fix it for free.
A Bent Wheel or Rim: While it’s not as obvious as a flat tire, it’s important to have your rims inspected when you detect any sort of damage, as air can leak from the vent between the rim and the tire. Additionally, a moderately bent wheel can cause small vibrations that can lead to unnecessary wear, and eventually, misalignment. In either case, be sure to call 1-877-GYR4TOW to get your vehicle towed to your local Just Tires and inspected by our technicians.
DAMAGES YOU CAN'T SEE
Alignment: More often than not, there’s no time to slow down before hitting the pothole. When traveling at higher speeds, the odds of under-the-car damage increase, particularly when it comes to your alignment. If left unattended, poor alignment can cause uneven and rapid wear on your tires, which can lead to them needing to be replaced earlier than expected.
Off-Centered Steering Wheel: It’s not uncommon for a pothole to knock your steering wheel off kilter. In vehicles with Electronic Power Steering, your steering wheel has a sensor that speaks directly to the Electronic Power Steering in your vehicle, which assumes that your steering wheel is true-center. If your wheel is a bit off-center, your steering will be affected because signals being sent to your wheels are not accurate.
Impact Break: As a result of sudden impact to your tire, you may suffer a small tear in one of the many layers of the tire, resulting in the formation of a bubble that can lead to an air leak. This leak may cause the bubble to grow over time, and can eventually lead to major tire issues.
What can I do?
The best thing you can do to avoid issues related to potholes is to be an alert and cautious driver, so that you can avoid potholes altogether. If you do happen to hit one, be sure to bring your vehicle in to Just Tires for an inspection by one of our technicians, even if you doesn’t look like you experienced any damage. Schedule an appointment with your nearest Just Tires store.