Potholes: appear when you least expect it and it’s hard to avoid them. Hitting a pothole not only gives you a jerk behind the wheel but can also affect your portfolio.

Bumpy roads add an additional $ 335 to the average annual cost of owning a car-in some big cities can be $ 740 more- according to the American Association of State and Highway Transportation.

Potholes and poor road conditions accelerate the deterioration of the vehicle, maintenance costs, fuel consumption and tire wear.

How the potholes form

The bumpy start when water seeps through cracks caused by traffic wear. As temperatures fall, the water freezes and expands, forcing the floor rises. Continued traffic on these stretches of road known as subsidence causes potholes.

Avoid potholes

  • When you get in the way, watch for these dangers and what to do if one is preventable.
  • Keep tires properly inflated. A tire could burst if the tire rubs against the jagged edge of a pothole.
  • Watch out for puddles, they could be profound and sharp edges with water filled potholes.
  • Slow down. If you find a pothole but at a slower rate usually less damage.
  • Stop slightly. Depress the brake violently may damage the tires more and compresses the front suspension system of the vehicle.
  • Do not swerve. You could have hit the bump with improper angle thus causing more damage to the tire, rim and alignment.

What to do if it hits a bump

  • If you hit a pothole, make a survey of the damage as soon as possible.
  • Make sure your tires are inflated to reduce damage to the tires.
  • If your vehicle is going sideways, there might be a problem with the alignment.
  • Many cities have a pothole registration process. If you see a pothole that needs repair, contact the department that controls the streets of your town.

For more information about how to protect your car, contact your local American Family Insurance agent for coverage of your car, truck or other motor vehicle.