Avoiding those new potholes

20 April 2022

The UK has a very big pothole problem. Many of our roads resemble the crater-filled surface of the moon rather than smooth, modern day thoroughfares, and our beloved cars are paying the ultimate price.

In one year alone, UK potholes managed to cause £3.1 million worth of damage to vehicles. Despite the many campaigns and protests to prioritise pothole repairs, record rises in pothole damage related breakdowns, and the government’s £2.5 billion Potholes Fund, our roads are still plagued by potholes.

With spring the worst time for potholes – the wet and cold weather provides ideal conditions for pothole formation – drivers everywhere are bracing themselves for more pothole problems and the damage that comes with them. But fear not, we have five top tips to help you avoid potholes and keep your car in tip top condition!


1. Keep a beady eye on the road

Watching out for potholes and taking an alternative route around the area of damage is the simplest way to prevent potholes from making a mess of your vehicle. Make sure you leave enough time to react, planning your manoeuvre well in advance and only driving to avoid the pothole if it is safe to do so.


2. Slow things down

Driving over potholes at high speed causes much more damage than driving over them at slow speeds. So, if it’s not possible to avoid those potholes due to the presence of other vehicles, cyclists and/or pedestrians, slow down.


3. Exercise control when driving

Hitting a pothole at an awkward angle is another sure-fire way of causing more damage to your vehicle. Always keep a handle on your steering wheel if you have to drive over the pothole, and avoid accelerating over the hole. Instead let your wheels roll freely to allow for maximum absorption.


4. Check your tyre pressure

Maintaining the correct tyre pressure for your make and model is one way to prepare your vehicle for taking on potholes and winning. Check your pounds per square inch (PSI) on a regular basis and consult your vehicle handbook to find the tyre pressure that is applicable to you. Your tyres may need inflating or deflating to ensure they meet the manufacturer’s recommended PSI.

In addition to helping you minimise damage caused by potholes, maintaining the correct tyre pressure will ensure a safer driving experience and better fuel economy.


5. Report that pesky pothole

Getting the UK’s pothole problem resolved isn’t going to happen overnight. To improve your chances of encountering fewer potholes, report any potholes you come across using the government’s Report a Pothole tool.

If your vehicle has been damaged by a pothole, you may be eligible for compensation.


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