If a car has been involved in an accident, there are sometimes very obvious signs of frame damage. Visible bending is one of the main keys. When the frame gets bent, even by a little bit, it can be highly detrimental to the structural integrity of the car. It can lead to a lot of other issues and make a car that appears to be in good condition into a lemon – all because the frame is bent just a fraction of an inch out of shape.
But what if you’re buying a car and you don’t know the extent of the damage? Is there any way to tell if there is hidden frame damage?
Check the alignment
The first thing to do is to take a test drive and see if the car pulls in either direction. If it does, that means the alignment is off, and the reason could be that the frame is bent.
Watch for uneven wear
If the frame isn’t perfectly even, different systems on the car are going to wear out in unique and unexpected ways. For instance, the suspension and the shocks could suffer greater wear on one side than the other. You may also see wear on the tires play out differently from the back to the front.
Listen for unusual noises
When the frame has been bent, other parts of the car may still work, but they won’t perfectly line up anymore. This can lead to creaking sounds, squeaking noises, grinding sounds and much more. Whenever you hear these unexpected sounds, it could be that two moving parts that were never supposed to touch have come in contact with one another.
If you feel that an auto dealer attempted to defraud you by selling you a car with significant frame damage that they tried to hide, then you need to know about all of your legal options.