Common types of off-roading damage and how to diagnose them

September 7th, 2021 by

If you’re the type of driver who likes to get off the pavement and into the great outdoors, then you probably also have done your fair share of damage to your vehicle. Off-roading comes with the inherent risk of both aesthetic and mechanical damage to your ride and there’s really no way to get around it other than sticking to the pavement.

However, if you’re new to the game, our Orlando auto service experts are here to help. Here are four major types of off-roading damage and how you can diagnose them yourself.

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Four types of off-roading damage to watch for

#1: Misaligned wheels. 

As you traverse different types of terrain while off-roading, your wheels and tires are taking a beating. They can easily be thrown out of alignment with all of the uneven terrain, and this can damage your suspension and other components of your Orlando Toyota out of time. The best way to diagnose a misalignment is to feel it out. If you feel vibrations in your steering wheel or feel that your car is pulling to one side, then you probably have a wheel alignment issue. Also, if your steering wheel is straight but your car is drifting to one side, that’s another giveaway. If you notice any of these signs, bring your car to Toyota of Orlando to get a wheel alignment pronto.

#2: Body damage. 

Body damage is almost inevitable when you’re off-roading. Branches will scratch your paint, rocks and roots can leave dents and dings… it’s going to happen. An easy way to find it is to just give your car a wash and wax when you get home. If you unearth any scratches, dents, or chips, bring your car into our Orlando body shop for repairs.

 #3: Transmission issues. 

As you traverse new terrain, it’s likely that your RPMs will go up and down a lot. However, if they’re consistently spiking too high and quickly dropping and vice versa, it can actually damage your car’s transmission over time. A quick way to find transmission issues after off-roading is to look for leaks under the car (transmission fluid, in particular), and to watch for performance issues like a slipping transmission or difficulty shifting gears.

#4: Undercarriage problems. 

Your undercarriage can also take a beating when you’re off-roading as it has to contend with rocks, roots, and uneven ground. Unfortunately, the undercarriage also houses some of the VIP parts of your vehicle. This is where you’ll find components like the exhaust system, oil pan, and more. It can, however, be tricky to diagnose issues with your undercarriage because you’re not under the car that often. Look for things like leaks (oil, especially) and warning lights coming on in the dash. If you suspect undercarriage damage, don’t delay – come into Toyota of Orlando for a diagnosis and repairs.

Schedule auto repairs at our Orlando Toyota service center

Have questions or need auto repairs after a day of off-roading? Contact Toyota of Orlando today. We’re open seven days a week at (407) 298-4500!

Posted in Toyota Service