Belle Tire Assistant Manager Gives Vehicle Tips for this Pothole Season
LANSING - With winter coming to a close and temperatures rising, pothole season is right around the corner. As snow melts on the roads, drivers can now spot potholes easier and try to avoid them, but often vehicles still come into contact with potholes and may suffer damages.
James Joy, the assistant manager at Belle Tire in Lansing, Michigan said when a vehicle hits multiple potholes or a really bad pothole, damages to the vehicle’s alignment and suspension may occur.
“Bending or breaking the wheel, that’s usually the first thing to go,” Joy said. “Over time it will put wear on your shocks and struts up front, also ball joints, components like that that are in the suspension.”
Joy said there are a few signs drivers can look for it they believe their car has suffered any damages from running over a pothole.
“If a vehicle is having a pull to it, you’re having some sort of issue with that or it feels like it’s wandering a little bit, it’s usually time for an alignment check,” Joy said.
Joy said the suspension of a vehicle is designed to allow some give, but overtime, hitting numerous potholes frequently can damage the suspension of a vehicle.
“How the suspension is designed, it allows give in the suspension, and over time the potholes just kind of wear those parts out and they become loose inside themselves,” Joy said.
Luckily, Joy said components in a vehicle’s suspension that may get damaged from potholes, like its shocks and struts, are normal maintenance and can be fixed.
“Tires and wheels that also take the hit need to be replaced as well sometimes,” Joy said.
Joy said he sees a lot of vehicles with pothole damage come into Belle Tire for alignment and suspension issues. Joy said the best thing a driver can do to avoid possible damages is to stay vigilant in avoiding potholes, and to get your vehicle checked out if you think there are any possible issues.
“It’s real pothole season,” Joy said. “After snow melts, you can see potholes in the road much easier. We recommend just having your vehicle checked out if you’re having issues with it, leaking tires, pulling in the vehicle, just bring it down we can take a look at it for you.”
Joy said Belle Tire offers free alignment checks that take at most an hour and a half, and he encourages drivers to take advantage of that.
“We pay a lot of money for these roads and they still don’t work very well, so there’s not much you can do other than try to avoid them as best you can,” Joy said.