Rules of the Road

Car Care 101 Rules of the Road by Sears Auto

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Potholes – more damaging than you think

Potholes – more damaging than you think

At times the road can get a little rough – construction, loose gravel, uneven pavement and those infamous potholes. These craters can cause big problems and not just to your tires and suspension system, but even to your engine. Here’s how to handle the hazardous holes in the road.

Reaction Time

Reacting properly to a pothole can help avoid costly damage to your vehicle. Here is what you should do:

  • Stay at least a car’s length behind the car in front of you. This gives you a wider view of the road – allowing you to see if you are approaching any road hazards.
  • Do not swerve to avoid a pothole. Doing this could potentially cause an accident. Instead, grab control of your wheel and slow down so the impact with the pothole is less severe.
  • Keep your tires properly inflated. Under or over inflated tires are more at risk for blowouts and flats.
  • Report a pothole to your state or city’s official website. That way, potholes can be fixed for future drivers and make the roads safer.

What’s your damage?

In the event you do hit a pothole (or several), there are a number of key areas on your vehicle to check over to ensure there isn’t any severe damage. These include:

Bulging tires: If you see any size bump on the side of your tire, you’ll want to get to a Sears Auto Center as quickly as possible.

Under the car: Small rocks or pieces of pavement can puncture or dent your vehicle’s fluid lines, or even get lodged in your brakes. 

Rims: Dents, large scratches or scrapes can cause vibration, a tear in your tire, buildup of rust or loss of air pressure.

Exhaust and engine: If you’re hearing odd noises coming from your vehicle, or your exhaust has gotten a bit louder, you can bet it’s probably not a good sign. Take precaution and drive carefully to your local Sears Auto Center.

What can I do to fix my car?

If you hit a pothole and discover a problem with your car, don’t panic. Simply visit your local Sears Auto Center or schedule an appointment online. Our experts will evaluate the situation and suggest only necessary repairs. Commonly suggested services for pothole damage include:

  • Alignment
  • Tire patching, replacement and maintenance
  • Vehicle Inspection
  • Tire balancing

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