Key Takeaways

  • Hitting a curb can cause various types of damage to your car.
  • It can affect your tires, wheels, and suspension system.
  • Some common signs of damage include unusual sounds and vibrations.
  • To minimize the risk, always remain cautious while driving and observe parking lot curbs.
  • If you notice any damage, seek professional help to address these issues.

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Picture this: you're driving along, and suddenly you misjudge a turn and find yourself hitting a curb. What damage can happen?

When you hit a curb you risk doing major damage to your car. The damage can range from wheel and rim damage that causes misalignment to steering and suspension damage. More serious damage like broken struts and tie rods can occur after you hit a curb as well.

As an expert in automotive care and maintenance, we understand the importance of keeping your car in top condition. That's why we're here to provide you with reliable information and advice on how to address the damages caused by hitting a curb. With our guidance, you can ensure your car remains safe and performs at its best, giving you peace of mind when you're out on the road.

Table of Contents

Tire Damage From Hitting Curb

When hitting a curb, one of the most common impacts is on the tires and wheels of your vehicle.

Tire Sidewall Damage

The tire damage can range from a tear or flat tire to a more severe case that might require replacement. A torn tire can sometimes be repaired, but if the tear is quite large, your local tire shop may suggest a new tire.

Superficial rim damage can occur due to scraping, but in some rare instances, the tire itself might be damaged. Although not very common, hitting a curb can cause damage to your vehicle's tire sidewall, leading to uneven wear and a decrease in tire pressure over time.

Wheel Misalignment

Beyond the visible tire and wheel rim damage, there might be underlying issues, such as wheel misalignment, which can result from contacting the curb. This misalignment can lead to uneven tire wear and affect the overall handling of your vehicle.

This type of misalignment will affect your steering wheel as well.

Additionally, hitting a curb could cause damage to your car's suspension, tie rods, and control arms, making the situation far more problematic. It's essential to have your vehicle inspected if you suspect there might be damage after a collision with a curb.

Suspension Damage

Hitting a curb can lead to a variety of suspension-related issues. Your car relies on the suspension system to provide a smooth ride and maintain control on uneven surfaces.

Two key factors to consider include shock absorber problems and strut issues. This type of damage results in higher collision repair costs.

Shock Absorber Issues

One possible outcome of hitting a curb is damage to your car's shock absorbers. If the impact was forceful, there may be uncontrollable bouncing when driving over speed bumps or uneven pavement. This not only makes driving difficult, but can also be a significant safety concern.

Strut Problems

In addition to shock absorber issues, you may also encounter strut problems after a run-in with a curb.

Your car's steering angle might be altered after the impact, potentially damaging your suspension's control arms and making it difficult to steer over bumps.

It's important to address these issues as they can quickly worsen, impacting the overall performance of your vehicle.

Steering System Damage

Hitting a curb can result in various types of steering system damage, affecting your vehicle's handling and overall performance.

Tie Rods

One component that may suffer damage from a curb impact is the tie rods. These connect the steering mechanism to the wheels and help control the vehicle's alignment.

When tie rods get damaged or bent, you may experience a loose steering wheel or difficulty steering the car. Take it to your nearest repair shop if you suspect this is the issue.

Control Arms

Another crucial part of the steering system that can be impacted is the control arms. These components connect the wheels to the vehicle's frame, allowing for up and down movement over bumps.

Damage to the control arms may cause trouble controlling the car over bumps, affecting driving safety.

Wheel Bearings

Damage to your wheel bearings can occur after you hit a curb. When wheel bearings are damaged, they will make a growling noise when driving at highway speeds.

Wheel bearings are vital to your vehicle’s operation.

Make sure to fix a faulty wheel bearing as soon as you notice an issue.

Undercarriage Issues

When hitting a curb, your vehicle's undercarriage may sustain damage, leading to various problems.

Exhaust System Damage

The exhaust system is situated on the undercarriage and is susceptible to damage when hitting a curb. Issues with the exhaust system can negatively impact your vehicle's performance and emissions.

Oil Pan Issues

Another component that may be affected is the oil pan. Hitting a curb can cause cracks or punctures in the oil pan, leading to oil leakage or pressure problems. This, in turn, can have adverse effects on your engine.

In conclusion, hitting a curb can lead to significant undercarriage damage, affecting critical components such as the exhaust system and oil pan. Be sure to inspect your vehicle for signs of damage after such an incident and visit a professional mechanic if necessary.

Body Damage

When you accidentally hit a curb, one of the most obvious and immediate concerns is the potential for body damage to your vehicle.

It's not uncommon for the impact to cause scratches, dents, or even cracked bumpers, depending on the speed and angle of the collision.

In some cases, a curb strike can also damage your car's undercarriage - this includes parts like the oil pan, transmission fluid, and cooling lines.

Hitting a curb can also have an impact on your vehicle's suspension system, potentially causing problems with alignment, steering, and ride comfort. Even a relatively minor curb hit could lead to problems in these areas.

It's essential to inspect your car for any visible signs of damage after a curb hit, and if you suspect any issues, make sure you consult with a professional mechanic to avoid further complications down the road.

What to Do After Hitting a Curb

So, you've hit a curb, and you're worried about the potential damage to your car. Don't worry; we've got you covered. In this section, we'll discuss some steps you should take soon after hitting a curb.

Inspect Your Vehicle

First and foremost, take a moment to visually inspect your vehicle. Look for any signs of tire or rim damage, such as tearing or deflation.

Additionally, check for any visible damage to other car components such as fuel lines, mufflers, and catalytic converters.

Seek Professional Help

If you suspect that your vehicle has sustained damage after hitting a curb, it's important to seek professional help as soon as possible.

A certified mechanic or repair shop can thoroughly inspect your car and determine if there are any issues with wheel misalignment, steering, suspension, or other components.

Getting your car checked out promptly can help prevent further complications and ensure your safety on the road.

Remember, while it may not always seem like a big deal, hitting a curb can cause various types of damage to your vehicle.

By taking the time to inspect your car and seeking professional help when necessary, you can help minimize any negative effects and keep your car running smoothly.

What Tire Damage Can Be Caused By Hitting A Curb?

About The Author

Christopher Sparks

Christopher Sparks

Christopher Sparks has been servicing vehicles since 2012. After completing the automotive studies program at Camden County College, he was awarded an Associates's Degree in Applied Science. His first job was a lube-tech at Jiffy Lube, and is currently an independent B-Technician servicing vehicles for the United States Postal Service. Christopher is ASE certified and loves rebuilding engines.

Read more about Christopher Sparks