Whether you rear-end another vehicle at a low speed or hit a wall at a higher speed, front-end collision is nothing to ignore. Not all damages are cosmetic. In some cases, major damage could be lurking out of sight.
1. Hood Damage
It's relatively common to end up with a dented or warped hood after a collision, but the visible damage isn't the real concern. The main concern is damage to the latching mechanism. If the hood doesn't latch properly after the collision, then it can pop open when the car is in motion. This is especially dangerous if it happens at higher speeds, such as on the freeway.
2. Engine Leaks
Even a low-speed collision will jar the items under the hood. Hoses can come loose or even disconnect entirely, leading to leaks of fluids from the radiator or transmission. A more major collision can damage components in the engine, as well, leading to an oil leak. Smaller leak problems aren't always immediately apparent unless you notice the fluid under your car, so a lot of damage from low fluids can occur if you don't have the car looked over by a mechanic following the collision.
3. Mount Failure
Engine mounts are vital for securing the heavy engine to the frame. A cracked mount from a collision can lead to engine moving, which affects vehicle handling as well as the condition of the engine. In severe cases, a loose or broken mount can cause the engine to come off the frame entirely, which is both unsafe and can cause irreparable damage to your vehicle.
4. Frame Problems
If your car's frame becomes bent and warped, the vehicle's drive stability will suffer. Bent frames can cause wobbling or drifting even at low speeds, which makes the car harder to steer. A bent frame may also lead to rubbing of components, such as tires against a fender, a problem that can lead to dangerous tire blowouts. Fortunately, most modern car frames can be straightened if you get into a mechanic right away.
5. Alignment Issues
A bent axle or alignment may not be noticeable unless you take a close look at your tires to make sure they are aligned. If the axle completely breaks while driving, you can lose control of the vehicle. Out of alignment tires also affect drive quality and can make a car hard to handle. Always have the axles inspected and alignment adjusted after an accident, no matter how small.
Contact an auto collision repair center for an inspection if you have been in a front-end collision. Remember, even minor collisions can result in major problems.