Bumped a Curb? It May Be More Serious Than You Think
Even Minor Curb Bumps Can Cause Damage
It can happen to the best of us. Especially during winter when the roads become extra slippery, no matter how careful you are, there’s still no 100% guarantee that you’ll never hit a curb.
It’s acknowledged as a common occurrence. It’s also a well-accepted fact that not all curb hits are equal. The severity of a curb hit will typically depend on the speed of the vehicle as it hits the curb, and the height of the curb. Of course, the faster one was driving and the higher the curb is, the more serious the damage will likely be.
This doesn’t automatically mean, though, that if you were travelling slowly, say 5 to 10 mph, you can instantly assume that there’s no damage. That’s an assumption that you should avoid making because hitting a curb can cause more damage than what you might expect.
What potential problems can result from hitting a curb?
Probably the most serious damage that can happen from a curb hit is the misalignment of your car’s suspension. The front suspension is composed of many different parts and damaging any of those can mean the difference between staying safe and driving towards danger.
For instance, if your tie rods (the ones that connect your steering system to your wheels) get broken, you won’t be able to have as much control over your steering as you normally have. And on icy roads, this can prove fatal. The same is true for your control arms which are responsible for the up and down movement of your suspension. If your control arms get damaged in any way, your suspension wouldn’t be as effective, and your driving won’t be as controlled.
Another common damage that can result has to do with your tires which can become prone to uneven wear and possibly lead to a disastrous blowout. If your tire rim gets bent due to the impact of the hit, your steering wheel might start to wobble. And if your alignment was affected, you may struggle to keep your car from drifting in one direction or another.
What should you do when you hit a curb?
Unless you’re a skilled mechanic yourself, the best thing you can do after hitting a curb is to have your vehicle inspected by a trusted mechanic. Even if the damage is as minor as a sway bar bracket getting broken or an inner tie rod needing replacement, you won’t really know how lucky (or unlucky) you are unless you have your car checked.
The most common check that will be done when you bring in your car to a repair shop after a curb hit is an alignment check. Typically, this involves taking measurements to remove any guesswork and figure out exactly which parts got bent or moved out of place.
It’s better to know the extent of the damage right away so the necessary fix can be done before anything else gets worse or causes more serious damage. The old adage “prevention is better than cure” applies under these circumstances. It will be in your best interest to have your car checked and fixed as soon as you can to avoid further damage, possible physical harm and other more costly expenses.
Big Sky Collision Center Fixes Cars
While we don’t do mechanical work, like alignments, we do take care of you if you have been in an accident. Was your vehicle damaged due to a collision? Give us a call at 406-259-6328 and we can get you fixed up to factory safety standards!
There’s a reason that we are the best auto body shop in Billings, we make you our priority.