Error or Imagined? Warning Signs of Damage While You’re Driving

Posted By: Main Auto Body, Inc. | May 31, 2019

Black Exhaust From Tailpipe

There are few worse feelings than driving along on your journey, hearing a strange noise and worrying that something has gone terribly wrong with your car. While these instances are commonly mistaken for sounds from other vehicles or uneven roads, there are several signs you can look out for to determine whether you’re imagining the problem or have a true concern on your hands. Since 1977, Main Auto Body has been working with Oregonians on diagnosing these issues and helping them get back on the road with confidence in their vehicle. Contact us today to learn more.

Visible Signs to Pull Over

While it’s possible that you imagined that strange sound or mistook a bump in the road for a major mechanical issue, there are telltale signs that those perceived issues are actually happening and causing damage to your car. Visible signs that you’ve encountered real problems while driving include:

  • Rising smoke from your hood, signaling that your engine could be overheating
  • Emitting excessive exhaust that may even appear black in color, usually meaning your engine is burning too much fuel and that your air filter, sensors, fuel injectors and fuel pressure regulator should be checked
  • Warning lights that appear on your dashboard, which most often occur mid-drive due to a flat tire or issues with tire pressure

What Real Problems Sound Like

In addition to what you can see, there are sounds that your vehicle gives off when certain parts are in distress. These are important to recognize, as more often than not, the whistling sound from the wind or having your window open while traveling at high speeds could have your mind racing as to what may be wrong with your car. Listen for the following signs of problems while driving:

  • High-pitched, continuous squealing that may mean a worn or damaged belt
  • Continuous chirping sounds, typically an indicator of issues with your brakes
  • A loud “thump” sound accompanied by a feeling like something has hit your car, which could mean anything from road kill to your belt falling off

How Sudden Car Damage Feels

There are times when we drive over uneven roads or accidentally hit a pothole, and then feel like our car isn’t driving as well as before. You know how your vehicle drives better than anyone, and if you start to feel any of the following problems while driving, you should seek a mechanic in the near future:

  • Increasing the pressure on your gas pedal while having trouble accelerating, which could indicate issues with the clutch
  • Difficulty steering straight, which can sometimes be blamed on strong winds but could also indicate tires wearing unevenly or alignment issues
  • Vibration in the steering wheel and continued movement after hitting a bump or pothole
  • Roughness in maneuvering the vehicle, sometimes caused by bad breaks
  • Air conditioning coming out warm or heat feeling cold, which could mean a faulty compressor or leak

Addressing Your Damage

If you’ve experienced any of these problems while driving, failure to address these issues could have dire consequences and cause you more damage down the road. At Main Auto Body, your safety is our top priority. We offer fast and professional car alignment, collision repair, glass replacement and paintless dent removal services to make your car look and run like new and get you back on the road as quickly as possible. To learn more, contact any of our nine locations in Northwest Oregon and the city of Bend.

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