Q: Hit a curb, bent the axle?

asked by on January 06, 2017

Hit a curb last night at about 10mph and the front right wheel hit directly on the side and took about 100% of the impact. The wheel is now touch the inside of the wheel well. Turns correctly and drives, and I took a picture on my phone and the axle appears to be the only thing that looks different on the affected side compared to the other side. Anything else I should be looking at? Estimated repair cost was around 150-250.

My car has 130000 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

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Although the CV axle on the side that was hit, particularly the CV joints, could have been damaged in the collision, the damage you are seeing is more likely due to the control arm, strut, and steering knuckle getting pushed inward. The control arm, strut, tie rod end(s), ball joint, and sway bar links could all have borne some of the force of the impact and been damaged to varying degrees. In addition, the wheel bearing and hub could have been damaged. The wheel itself should be measured for runout (to determine if the wheel was bent) and if the wheel is aluminum it should be at least visually inspected for cracks. Basically, in a situation like this, so long as the frame and subframe (that holds the suspension) was not damaged in any way, the car is eminently repairable but the exact cost will depend on a complete and expert inspection. There is no way of telling exactly which parts are damaged without at least a visual exam and a partial disassembly might be required to be totally accurate. If the CV axle joints and wheel bearings were damaged, you might not even find that out for a while as those parts might not "fail" or make noise until the damage that was done starts to "propagate" with use. It sounds repairable so the logical thing to do is request a damage inspection and the responding certified mechanic will give you a precise estimate of what all will be required to restore your vehicle to good condition.

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