Our car is a very important part of our everyday lives. They take us to work, school, shopping, and for some of us it is our office. With that in mind we really need to take care of it so we can get to and from places. Weather is today’s topic because it affects the car every day, whether you drive your car or not. Much of the weather in the southeastern region of the U.S., where Classic Collision has 26 locations, revolves around extreme forms of water, wind and heat. When weather strikes, or turns the temperature up to 11, many auto repair shops get backed up for months with hundreds of cars that need repairs. Anything you can do to avoid it in the first place will save you a lot of hassle.
Did you know…
Exposing your car to excessive amounts of water, likely from driving on the road during or right after a heavy rainstorm, hurricane or flood can cost you dearly. Even if you aren’t in an accident it can cause so much damage that if you need a repair an adjuster might determine that your car is “totaled” because the repair will cost more than the value of the car. The adjuster will change the status of your title to a “salvage title” which means you will not be able to sell it for the Blue Book value in the future. Be aware! There are unscrupulous people who do purchase these cars, fix them up enough to get them running and then sell them to unsuspecting buyers. You can easily check a title by using the National Insurance Crime Bureau’s VIN check search tool at NICB.org. They’ll highlight if your vehicle has been reported as lost or stolen; if it’s been salvaged; or if it’s been declared a total loss by insurers after an accident. The service is free to use.
Cars today tend to have intakes fairly low down at the front of the car. If you drive through free standing water on the road it will be sucked up into the engine, causing it to stall. This has a domino effect in the engine with parts overloading and can even destroy the engine altogether. Driving through water can also cause hydroplaning, which means the tire sits on water instead of the road and causes loss of steering, braking and power control. We will be featuring more about this in an upcoming post so be sure and check back to learn more.
Another water culprit is humidity. Because humid air has more water and less oxygen, over time it requires your vehicle to work harder to produce power which can result in parts wearing out more quickly.
Winds of between 111 – 135 m.p.h. are enough to lift and move average sized cars (according to the engineers that helped devise the Enhanced Fujita Scale). Winds of even 30 to 45 mph can make driving significantly more dangerous and can even blow your car off course. High profile vehicles such as trucks, vans, SUVs and RV’s are particularly at increased risk in high winds. Strong winds can potentially cause debris to blow around and may cause an accident, or things can fall on/hit your car. We speak from experience here because, as an auto body shop, we repair a lot of damage from falling branches, trees, carports, and flying debris etc.