Accidents happen and when they do, it is important to know just what to do when one happens to you. No two accidents are the same, but surrounding all the differing circumstances, one thing is for sure. If you are rear-ended your vehicle will have some damage from the collision. Even if you can’t see any damage, it is imperative you have your vehicle inspected by an auto body mechanic to ensure it is safe for you to drive. Here are 5 reasons you should have your car checked and inspected after being rear-ended.
1. Hidden Body Damage: After a rear-end collision, even if you can’t see any problems with your vehicle, there might be some critical parts that were damaged. For example, underneath the plastic bumpers, there are a variety of instrumental parts essential for your vehicle to safely operate. An experienced, trained mechanic wiil find and correct these problems so you can drive safely.
2. Transmission Troubles: Since the transmission is located toward the rear of the vehicle, the probability of the transmission system being damaged after a rear-end collision is high, especially for rear-wheel and all-wheel vehicles. A professional mechanic will look for leaking transmission fluid, slipping transmission issues, problems shifting gears and other instrumental components. If you drive your vehicle and some of these issues occur, it could damage your transmission and other parts causing unnecessary expensive repair.
3. Wheel Alignment Damage: Alignment, also referred to as breaking or tracking is the system that connects a vehicle to its wheels. Poor alignment will cause brakes, tires, and suspension to experience damage. The key to maintaining your vehicle’s proper alignment is getting a professional wheel alignment. If the vehicle drives unevenly on the road, the steering wheel seems loose or wobbly, there are unusual vibrations that reduce the car’s comfort, then the alignment is probably affected.
4. Trunk Issues: The trunk of your vehicle usually, more often than not, is damaged in a rear end collision. If it doesn’t open and close easily, the latch should definitely be checked by a professional mechanic to prevent it from swinging open while driving, blocking visibility, or sending the contents of the trunk flying out into the road causing more accidents. You also want to make sure that it is sealed tight so water cannot leak inside and cause rusting.
5. Tail Light Failure: Tail lights should be inspected to make sure they work correctly after a rear-end collision. The same goes for the brake lights and blinkers. Not having these essential lights working correctly could cause even more serious accidents and damage.
It’s always a good idea to immediately contact your insurance company right after an accident and explain what happened. It also a good idea to contact 911 so a police officer can come to the accident site, prepare an detailed report. Input both contact numbers into your mobile device or write them on the owners manual of the car so they can easily be accessed during the stress of the incident. Exchange personal contact information and insurance policy information so if there is future damage, the insurance company will have it on file.