The pothole epidemic blighting the UK’s roads is saddling motorists with seriously damaged cars and hefty repair bills, not to mention leading to avoidable accidents and casualties.
With councils across the UK revealing they are paying out small fortunes in compensation to motorists whose cars have been crippled after driving over gaping craters, one of the most frequently asked questions from etyres customers is: “Can a tyre damaged by a pothole be repaired?”
Although around 60 per cent of punctured tyres can be repaired, unfortunately the damaged wreaked by potholes is usually so extensive it would be impossible or unsafe to carry out a repair to British Standard BS AU 159. If you would like to find out if your damaged tyre can be fixed, you can print out our free etyres repairable area gauge which shows you in which area of the tyre tread it is possible to safely and legally repair a puncture.
Usually only the centre area of a tyre is repairable, while driving over a pothole tends to wreck the sidewall thus causing irreparable harm.
Pothole damage could result in a dangerous tyre failure and a blow-out while driving and while not every encounter with a deep pothole will require a replacement tyre, but it is imperative to pull over as soon as it is safe to do so and check for signs of cracks, lumps and bulges.
Each wheel should be inspected for signs of splits or dents in the rim. Additionally, if the steering wheel doesn’t return to centre properly or you notice clonking sounds when your vehicle changes direction or goes over a bump, it is important to get the car checked over as you could have a broken spring or shock absorber. Also, if the steering seems to veer to one side or you feel increased vibration coming through the steering wheel, the tracking may have been knocked. Again, it is important to get this re-set as ignoring it can lead to severe tyre wear and higher fuel consumption.
Potholes are particularly prevalent at the moment, they are created by a failure in the road surface that has been caused by water seeping into the underlying structure and cracks. During the winter months this water freezes and expands, moving the gravel underneath the tarmac. When the water melts a hole is left under the road and the tarmac collapses as a result of the stress from vehicles.
Snow and ice are the worst conditions for exacerbating existing road defects due to the repeated freeze-thaw conditions. However, hot temperatures can also be to blame as the road surface can both melt and expand in extreme heat.
If you suspect your tyre has been damaged by a pothole, contact etyres immediately so we can assess the extent of the problem and carry out a repair or supply and fit a replacement tyre at a time and location that suit you.
Denna Bowman, Head Office