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02-17-2011 05:48 PM #1
pothole = aligment, suspension damage?
Did I do some damage or what? I have a 2003 540 6sp sport, no mods to it. I hit a medium pothole the other day, not the biggest, but I hit it square on the left tires. Unintentionally of course. I noticed it because it sounded funny going over it - almost tinny & not like a solid tight thump you're used to with the 540 sport. Immediately, I heard a light scraping noise that pulsed with the speed of the car. I slowed down to turn into a parking lot & the frequency of the scraping noise slowed down too. I couldn't see anything hanging under the car or loose in the wheel wells, no damage to the wheel, so I drove home. The scraping noise basically went 95% away during that time. But on the way home it became clear that the car now pulled to the right. And I have to keep the steering wheel a little left to keep the car straight on a road with no crown. For the past 3 days, I can confirm the car alignment must be off, as the car pulls right, and it requires slight but constant counter clockwise pressure on the steering wheel to keep the car straight. When going straight, the steering wheel is at about the 11:45 position, or just about an inch left. OK, so an alignment is in order.
But there's something else. The car has a noticeable different feel over bumps now. It feels a little looser to me. And going over bumps is a bit louder and harsher. And you feel it a lot more. It's not graceful and firm. In fact, the whole car now creaks a bit over bumps, the door seals pop now all the time, even over slight bumps. This was not the case before the pothole. There is no tire chopping or bouncing. It was not a massive pothole, and I hit it at about 30mph, so I doubt there would be frame damage, but could there be suspension damage - like a bent or worn or broken part(s)? And could such a problem cause the whole car to creak a little and seem a tad loose? I'll get under the car, but what might I look for?
AND now when I start the car, there is a LOUD rattle from the engine bay, lasts about a second. It doesn’t sound good, like beating on a wood drum. That is new too.
02-17-2011 08:12 PM #2
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