Winter is the season for the holidays. Families getting together and enjoying each other’s company is a common theme throughout the winter season. Unfortunately, so are potholes. Snow, cold temperatures, and rain all contribute to these unsightly and dangerous road hazards. They may not look like much, but those craters in the roadway are dangerous, not only to your driving, but to your car. How many times have you driven over a monster pothole and though to yourself, “Something just broke on my car!”? Next time you ask yourself that, remember these warning signs to see if something actually DID break.
- Loss of tire pressure. Potholes are taxing on tires and if you hit one just right, you may puncture even the newest tires. Even if you don’t puncture it, you might notice a bulge or a blister on the tire. If so, have your tire guys check it out to make sure there is no internal damage.
- Pulling to the right or left. This means you’ve got an alignment problem. Hitting a pothole can cause and worsen any alignment problem you may have. If your car is noticeably pulling in one direction, it’ll only get worse and potholes will offer no help.
- Loss of control, swaying, bottoming out. These are indicators that your steering or suspension may have been damaged. If you notice a considerable change in the way your car is steering or the ride, have your car checked by a professional. Struts, shocks and ball joints (plus countless others) are all very important components of controlling your vehicle while it is in motion. If one of them is damaged or broken, you’re putting yourself and others at risk.
Potholes will happen. Until there is a new breakthrough in the way our roads are designed, the winter season will bring on a number of new ones. Here in Texas, we can go to our Department of Transportation website and report a pothole to make its existence aware to the state so they can assign a contractor to fill them in. If you’re outside of Texas, check with your state’s DOT and let them know about any new potholes you come across. If you need to get your car checked out after running over a massive pothole, don’t hesitate to bring it in, we’ll take a look.