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Severe tire damage

2840 Views 27 Replies 15 Participants Last post by  Kbecker
I posted about our flat tire in the OnStar thread but here is a short recap. We have had the 2023 EUV for six weeks, it has 1600 miles on it. Monday before last, we had the front right tire blow out on I-94 west of Jackson Michigan. It was dark, in a construction zone, one lane, and snowing enough to make things slippery. Speed limit 60 but traffic was light and no one was tailgating us, so we were only going about 50 mph. That pothole claimed a lot of victims, we were one of nine cars with blowouts in that spot. OnStar had us towed to Art Moehn Chevy in Jackson.

Art Moehn Jackson was a pain to deal with. The service advisors are never available when you call and no one else can answer anything, you wait hours for call backs. It took until Friday for them to source and install a tire. $332 for one tire, and it鈥檚 not even the self sealing version since those are unavailable. The wheel has cosmetic damage but is still functional, which is good because they say wheels are unavailable.

They wouldn鈥檛 check for other issues until they got the tire on. So on Friday they finally checked it and said it needed a front end alignment and it could not be done until Monday. Monday they called and said it had a damaged strut, and it would take a week to get unless I paid $50 for overnight shipping. I need my car back sometime this century, so I agreed to pay it.

When the blowout happened we were transporting garbage. During one of the calls discussing the delays, I told them that whether or not it鈥檚 done I am going to need to get the trash out of there before it stinks up the new car. They promised to take care of it. They also said they would charge the battery.

Picked the car up yesterday. Total bill was $1240. Ouch. Garbage still in car, battery not charged.

But wait there鈥檚 more. On the drive home I noticed a weird humming noise that wasn鈥檛 there before. TPMS said the right front had 37psi and the other three all had 41. Could the noise be overinflated tires? Checked with a gauge once I got home and the tire with 37psi was the new one, on the damaged wheel, on the back right. I guess that makes sense, put the different tire in the back. But clearly they didn鈥檛 relearn the TPMS when they rearranged the tires.

Rather than deal with taking the car back to Jackson, we had it diagnosed by a local garage we trust. They said the noise was a wheel bearing. They can鈥檛 get to it until next week and with the car so new they thought we should take it to the dealer. They recommend Art Moehn in Chelsea. So we went there on our way home. Its much smaller and the service advisor there had time for us. He said they have the same name but are separate from Jackson, so we were not in his computer. He did the TPMS on the spot. We have an appointment to get our wheel bearing there tomorrow.

Please please let that be the end of it.

My insurance agent says that hitting a pothole is a single vehicle accident and if I make a claim it will be considered my fault. I wasn鈥檛 going to claim since at first we thought the cost was less than my deductible. But as the costs grow I am rethinking that. There is also a state of Michigan form I can fill out to try for some compensation there. It did not look promising but I may try it.

It鈥榮 always an adventure.
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Wow, @Kbecker. So sorry for your troubles. That wasn't a pothole; it was a pure hole in the ground.
Sorry to hear this. And yes, hitting a pothole can damage a lot a car. What sucks is that you can't send the bill to the ones in charge with the road maintenance... we are in NA.
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Oof that could be the worst tire adventure I've ever heard about on here.

I was left stranded in my Bolt due to a tire failure 500 miles after I got the car. Wasn't nearly as dramatic or expensive as your experience but still took me the better part of a day to get back on the road.

I ended up replacing all four tires at that point and got a spare tire and jack for the car.
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There is also a state of Michigan form I can fill out to try for some compensation there. It did not look promising but I may try it.
You will not get compensation. I went through a similar experience on US23, just 5 miles from my house, hitting a "step" in the pavement caused by settling. Took out both RH tires, but didn't damage anything else. My Bolt was just a few months old. I contacted MDOT and got the form, but was told up front that the only way the State will compensate you is if someone else has reported the problem and it hasn't been repaired. I did submit my claim, but it was denied. They did throw some asphalt in the problem area by the next day and did a permanent fix some time later. That section of highway, between the Ohio line and milepost 12 or so is notorious for pavement settling.

I'm not sure what you'd search under, but I reported it here at the time.
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Locally we can try to sue the contractor or whoever made the road damage.
This time of year, potholes appear suddenly. This one was just extra treacherous because of the orange barrels narrowing the lane and putting the traffic right on it.

I know that stretch of US23, jdunmeyer. It was like the craters of the moon, for years. Worse than this stretch of I-94, even. And people go incredibly fast there, speed enforcement is thin.
If you can get documentation on the other victims maybe to support your claims.
You will not get compensation. I went through a similar experience on US23, just 5 miles from my house, hitting a "step" in the pavement caused by settling. Took out both RH tires, but didn't damage anything else...
It's amazing how US23 becomes as smooth as glass as soon as you cross the border into Ohio... ;)
The worst pavement ever, though, was W Huron until its recent repaving. So bad they gave up on lanes and just told cars to pick their way single file over both lanes. During that period, I led a group of sidecar motorcycles down Miller, because Huron was so bad, and the Ural behind me lost control on THOSE potholes and took out two cars. No one was even going over 25mph.

When I went to Alaska, I remember being asked what I thought of the roads. I said I am from Michigan and the Alaska roads are just fine.

In Bolt news, GM is covering my wheel bearing under warranty.
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Even out here in southern CA with all the rains, the roads are full of holes. But I've been out and over those roads from Milwaukee to central Maine in my Volt. Unbelievable. Barely qualified to be called roads.
Getting way OT, as is our wont here, but agree. I've been in countries which were bombed recently and lost the war and still have better roads than many parts of the USA.

jack vines
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It's amazing how US23 becomes as smooth as glass as soon as you cross the border into Ohio... ;)
As someone that drove extensively between Cleveland and Detroit for many years, I can confirm this statement.
The ironic thing about my experience on US23 is that I was just changing into the LH lane to get away from the bad pavement. The "step" was right at the junction between the RH and LH lanes.

As Michbolt says, it is amazing how things change at the OH line. :-(
Commiserations to the OP ....

.... do you have the stock LRR tires? In my mind I have already built a pretty strong case against the stock 215/50-R17's, whom I suspect to be much more vulnerable to damage. A pothole is never a pleasant thing, but some tires (typically those with higher aspect ratios) appear to negotiate potholes with more grace than the stock LRR tires. I would go even further and postulate that a more flexible/"softer" tire (not sure if I am using the correct term - what the opposite of the inherently rigid LRR tires?) is likely to do a better job protecting the suspension and the rest of the car from shocks, caused by road defects.
I do have the original tires, yes. And I do think a higher aspect ratio tire would be more resilient and improve ride comfort, but reduce efficiency. It鈥檚 all tradoffs.

This has been our third SE Michigan winter driving around in Bolts with stock tires (previous car was a 2020 Bolt) and I don鈥檛 think the OEM tires were as bad in snow as all that. It鈥檚 a front wheel drive car after all. I might feel differently if I went up north regularly, or lived on a never-plowed street. But my street is always plowed promptly. And I hate to just waste the stock tires; it would have to be a bigger handling problem for me to throw them away. Still, especially after this incident I might choose something different next time.

I got the Bolt back today and all the problems are now resolved. Driving like new!
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My insurance agent says that hitting a pothole is a single vehicle accident and if I make a claim it will be considered my fault. I wasn鈥檛 going to claim since at first we thought the cost was less than my deductible. But as the costs grow I am rethinking that. There is also a state of Michigan form I can fill out to try for some compensation there. It did not look promising but I may try it.
Yikes. Potholes can really do you in. I had a 2000 BMW 3-series that was totaled by a pothole on the freeway - the tire actually survived but the impact triggered the side airbag and that was that. Car was 14 years old with 195k miles on it, and they claimed repairs would be >$5k. As your agent said, it is considered a collision. If you have an exemplary agent, and are lucky, they may be able to appeal that 'at fault status'. It took my agent almost a year of back and forth, but we did eventually get it updated to a 'no fault' collision.

I hate potholes.
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the only way the State will compensate you is if someone else has reported the problem and it hasn't been repaired.
I've heard the same story in California. Of course, no one has ever reported the problem. :rolleyes:

On the other hand, I reported a pothole to our pothole hotline in my city. Someone called back for clarification later that day, and it was patched when I got home.
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It's amazing how US23 becomes as smooth as glass as soon as you cross the border into Ohio... ;)
We travelled through the Midwest in the Fall of 2021. Some states were repaving roads that looked fine, others look like 20 year old concrete plates that are all out of alignment.
I have already built a pretty strong case against the stock 215/50-R17's, whom I suspect to be much more vulnerable to damage.
I hit a pothole in Salt Lake City that I only saw for a moment, in heavy traffic. It looked perfectly wide enough to swallow my tire, about two feet long, with an obviously sharp edge. I gritted my teeth.
Kaboom!
I expected to have a flat immediately, and kept the tire PSI display up for hours afterward.
This was in a Mercedes C300 Sport, which has pretty stiff suspension.
The front tires are Continental Extreme Contact 225/45 R17 91W.
No damage. Thousands of miles later, still on the same low profile tires. They can't be rotated because they are different sizes front and rear.

I agree that low profile tires would seem more susceptible to damage than a 78 series used to be, but they aren't all latex balloons.
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