Driving in the spring is a wonderful feeling. The snow and ice from the winter is melting. The sun is also out more. But while you will want to drive safely on the road, also make sure you are aware of the condition of the road. If you see puddles, they could be hiding potholes. Hitting a pothole can be dangerous because it will do damage to your vehicle.
Why damage occurs
Damage from a pothole occurs when the tire exits it. With a disproportionate amount of weight on the submerged tire, the force of impact it has exiting the pothole is severe. One of the most common parts that can get damaged are the tires. The tires of a vehicle are always in contact with the road. When the tire enters a pothole, the force on the tires, which is relatively balanced on a level surface, is no longer evenly distributed.
Tires hitting potholes
As the tire drops into a pothole, the vehicle is no longer level, and the weight begins to shift more heavily on to the tire that is relatively lower than the tires on the regular road surface. The damage occurs when the tire exits the pothole. With a disproportionate amount of weight on the submerged tire, the force of impact it has exiting the pothole is severe. As it hits the edge of the pothole, a massive, concentrated force strikes the tire directly. This force, if severe enough, misshape the tire, rupture it, or even bend its rim. Maintaining optimal air pressure in tires can help prevent these types of problems, as it cushions the impact, the fact remains that hitting the right pothole in the right spot can leave a driver stranded regardless.
Other damage from potholes
Other damage you may notice could be dents or leaks. The tires of a vehicle are made to keep it a certain distance above the ground. While a tire is in a pothole, the entire vehicle moves lower to the ground, and the abrupt movement can cause the suspension to compress, dropping it even closer to the road’s surface. If the vehicle makes contact, the result can be anything from scratches to damaged mechanical components. If you hit a pothole, bring the vehicle in. No matter how big or small the potholes are, they can do damage to your vehicle.