In Raleigh, vehicles sometimes encounter hazards stemming from two seemingly unlikely sources: potholes and road salt. If you drive extensively during the wintertime, you’ll like encounter both of these roadway conditions at some point. By making sure you take prompt action to correct any damage they cause your car or truck, you can often prevent the development of long term problems.
During summer months, alert drivers can often avoid damage caused by roadway potholes; taking evasive measure to prevent running into a pothole sometimes becomes impossible during winter. Potholes hold several potential hazards for vehicles. These areas of depression or pitting in a road surface place unwelcome stress upon tires, for instance. In the worst case scenario, running over a jagged rocky pothole occasionally causes a flat.
However, probably the most common threat posed by potholes relates to the impact of the pothole on automotive suspension systems. For example, driving through a pothole may cause damage to ball joints, a component of many older suspension systems.
An automotive suspension system essentially serves as a buffer between the frame of a vehicle and the wheels. This complex mechanical assembly ensures that when tires cross uneven surfaces, the impacts won’t reach people sitting in the cabin and create an unpleasant, bumpy ride. When cars and trucks encounter potholes, the impact sometimes causes suspension system damage. (This longstanding problem has even prompted some automakers, such as Ford, to begin developing pothole warning systems for new vehicles.) Every year, potholes cost the public thousands of dollars in vehicle suspension repair bills!
Road Salt Hazards
Road salt and sand deposited on icy road surfaces during winter months to improve driving safety also sometimes exact a hidden toll on unwary vehicle owners. Some cars encounter acidic roadway splatter containing fine particles of roadway grit and road salt. Over the course of time, this material may gradually degrade a glossy automotive exterior. It eventually may contribute to rust development.
Experts offer several tips for drivers to reduce the potential for rust conditions:
- Try and avoid following winter roadway gravel trucks at a close distance;
- Whenever possible, don’t slosh through puddles in the winter;
- Wash you vehicle frequently during winter months;
- Schedule regular inspections of your vehicle to check for signs of rusting.
Some auto repairers apply protective coatings to vehicles to offer enhanced resistance against clinging acidic grit particles and other roadway debris. By preventing the buildup of acidic material on the surface of your vehicle, you’ll help safeguard a glossy paint coat. It remains important to check all parts of the vehicle for signs of rust development, including the undercarriage.
When you’d appreciate a careful inspection of your vehicle by qualified mechanics capable of detecting auto body rusting problems or suspension system damage, visit Weatherspoon Automotive, Inc. in Raleigh. We’ll look at your vehicle and let you know if we observe any signs of developing problems!