After one of the worst winters on record, this spring we are faced with an epidemic of potholes on local and state roads. We are seeing more and more clients come in with pothole-related problems. Hitting one of these monsters can do major damage to your car and cause safety issues.
Here are some tips on avoiding potholes:
Slow down and don’t tailgate! If you are driving too fast or are too close to the car in front of you, you won’t be able to see the pothole or have time to avoid it.
Don’t speed up! Your car cannot “fly” over a pothole.
Don’t slam on your brakes! When you brake heavily your car will nosedive and compress the suspension (shocks, springs and struts.) You need to allow the suspension to absorb the impact to its full ability, which means taking your foot off the brakes just before entering a pothole.
Get a grip on your steering wheel! Hitting a pothole can snap the steering wheel to the left or right, so hold on tightly so you don’t lose control and end up in the wrong lane.
Watch out for puddles! Be especially cautious when driving over puddles, as you never know if there’s a huge pothole hiding in there that can damage your car.
Report major potholes! Protect your neighbors and loved ones by reporting potholes. For local roads, call the Department of Public Works in your town. For New York state roads, call the toll-free hot line at 1.800.POTHOLE (1.800.768.4653).
You’ve done your best to avoid them, BUT you still had your teeth rattled by a large pothole. Don’t assume that there’s been no damage to your tire, rim or suspension. If your car pulls in one direction, that could mean the wheels are out of alignment. If the steering doesn’t feel right or the car is bouncing over bumps, the steering or suspension may have been damaged. Come in to one of our shops for an alignment inspection right away. We will also check your tires, wheels, suspension and body panels.
Drive safely on the roads this spring, and keep an eye out for potholes. They are more than just a nuisance, potholes can be a serious danger to your vehicle and your safety on the road.