Q: Can an accident cause the alignment to be off and the front left strut to leak even when only the body was damaged visually?

asked by on February 21, 2017

My car was damaged on the front drivers corner when I hit a lady's car who was doing an illegal U-turn. I slammed on my brakes and yanked my wheel to the right to try not to T-bone her and hit right where her passenger was sitting. I was going about 45 mph and once we impacted the front passenger side of my vehicle went on the curb and was tilted sideways. I impacted her car on the front passenger side where the tired and front bumper area were. Her car was not drivable and had to be towed. Her insurance company told me it was only cosmetic and that's all they fixed. As soon as I got my car back it was making a funny noise on the front drivers side. I tried to take it back and they said the alignment is probably off and to take it somewhere else because there is nothing they can do. I took it to Midas and they said the alignment was off and that the front left strut was leaking and those along with the shock assembly needed replaced. They also had to replace the two tires wear.

My car has 92000 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

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If the speed at time of impact was over 10 MPH and you jumped the curb, the alignment can easily be disturbed not to mention the possibility, indeed likelihood if the speed was high enough, of damage to the unibody of your car, the sub-frame, and suspension components. The only way to rule out frame damage is to have the car carefully measured using a tram. You should make a claim with the insurance company as, from your description, it sounds like not all the damage was documented properly, let alone repaired properly and completely. Automobiles are structurally strong enough to endure the normal forces involved in driving but they will sustain often substantial damage in these kinds of impacts and because the damage is costly to repair insurance companies are not always your best friend in identifying the damage and getting it repaired or compensating you. I suggest you get the vehicle carefully inspected and then discuss this with the insurance company. If you want an independent inspection of your vehicle’s suspension by a certified Mechanic to determine if there is misalignment and/or damaged suspension parts, please request a suspension inspection and the responding certified Mechanic will get your concerns addressed. If you have further questions or concerns, do not hesitate to re-contact YourMechanic as we are always here to help you.

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