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After the Crash: Commonly Overlooked Vehicle Damage

Car crash
If you have ever been involved in a collision and you are not injured, your first reaction is to survey the damage to your car. You probably have several concerns regarding the physical damage to your car. How extensive is the damage? Will you be able to drive your car away from the accident scene? How long will the auto repair shop to repair the car?

All of these questions are valid concerns, but an equally important issue exists regarding collision damage to your car: the damage you can't immediately see. After a car collision, you might have damage to parts of the car that are not immediately apparent. Look at some common types of vehicle damage that often go undetected after an accident.

Electrical System

Your car might have broken headlights or taillights after a crash. However, part of the repair process should include more than just replacing the lights and putting in new bulbs. The crash could have compromised other parts of the electrical system in the car as well.

Sometimes a hard enough crash can loosen or break electrical wires under the hood and elsewhere within the body of the car. When power is unable to travel from the battery to various components in the car, this affects more than just your ability to play music or use the air conditioner. Safety features like windshield wipers and airbag sensors in the car rely on electrical signals to function.

A crash may also have affected the electrical system ground cable. This cable is responsible for creating a ground path between the battery and the metal body of the car. Without a tight metal to metal fit, the ignition system of your car will experience performance issues. Multiple grounding cables in a mostly fiberglass car body increases a potential loosened connection.

Bumpers

The front and rear bumpers of your vehicle will most likely bear the brunt of a collision. In fact, roughly 32% of crashes are rear-end collisions. Replacing visibly crumpled and mangled bumpers is obviously necessary, but what about when a bumper is involved in a minor accident?

Modern bumpers have reinforced plastic materials that should be as impact-resistant as metal but far less costly. The rigid outer covering gets scratches and dents during a minor crash, but often people overlook the inner bumper for repairs. Unless a mechanic thoroughly inspects it, a bumper you haven't replaced is less able to perform the job of absorbing the shock of another collision down the road.

Frame

As the skeleton of a car, the frame is important because it provides both support for vehicle components and protection during a crash. A hard enough impact can bend or twist the entire frame slightly, resulting in complications later. Diagnosing a bent frame after an accident is easy to miss if the accident was minor and left little damage.

Signs of a bent car frame can appear later as you drive your car. You may notice the front and rear wheels don't line up correctly. You can test this by driving in a straight line through water or sand and then counting the sets of tracks - more than two sets could indicate trouble with the alignment or frame.

Other signs include feeling as if the car drives crooked and doors do not close as tightly as before.

Unfortunately, these and other signs of damage often go unnoticed following an accident, which can lead to other problems later in the life of the car or affect its performance and possibly your safety. Don't let damage go undetected if you had a collision. Let the professionals at Cambron Body Shop take care of your auto body repair needs.

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