Sometimes, the roads and highways can be unforgiving, especially if they are scattered with diverts, bumps, and potholes. While your vehicle is designed to absorb the shock of hitting a pothole, repeated contact can start to wear on your car.
We can’t control the road, but there are ways to avoid receiving significant damage to your vehicle. Here are four ways you can safely avoid pothole damage:
- Check your tires
Your tires are the primary shock absorbers when you hit a pothole. If your tires are flat or lack the proper air pressure, there is a greater chance of damaging your wheel or suspension. If you live in an area where hitting bumps or potholes occur on a regular basis, frequently check your tire pressure.
- Remain Alert
It can be easy to put your car in cruise control and coast along the highway. However, it’s important to always be watching for unassuming obstacles that can have a damaging impact on your vehicle and others around you. A large part of avoiding damage from potholes is to simply be aware of your surroundings. Even if you do hit a pothole, preparing for impact can help protect you from an unexpected shock.
- Watch your suspension
If a pothole damages your suspension, you may notice a few warning signs. Your car may veer off-center while in motion. Controlling the wheel may be more difficult as the handling of your vehicle may feel loose. Additionally, If your suspension is giving off any unusual noises or vibrations, they could be damaged. If you notice any of these warning signs, your car will need to be fixed by a mechanic as soon as possible.
- Slow down
If you see a pothole that you cannot avoid, it’s better to slow down than to absorb the impact at full speed. Avoid braking abruptly and endangering yourself and others on the road. Check your surroundings and make sure that you can safely reduce your speed. Releasing the brakes just before hitting a pothole allows the wheel and tire to roll through it and helps reduce potential damage.
If you suspect that a pothole has damaged your vehicle, get a thorough inspection before driving long distances. Hard pothole impact can knock the wheels out of alignment, affect steering, dislodge wheel weights, damage a tire or wheel, and bend or even break suspension parts. Always stay proactive and safe while driving. Following these tips can help ensure that your vehicle stays intact and that you travel safely.