2 Ways A Frame Bent During A Collision Affects Your Car's Other Safety Features

Posted on: 3 May 2019

After being struck by another vehicle, you may have discovered that your car's frame was slightly warped or bent during the collision. And, since the vehicle still drives fairly straight, you may believe that you can put off having the frame repaired. However, if your frame sustained damage and was weakened, it could adversely affect a couple of your car's other safety features, which could be dangerous if you were to be in another accident.

1. Causes a Delay in Airbag Deployment

One safety feature that is greatly impacted by a damaged frame is your car's airbag system. When you hit an object or are struck by another vehicle, the rigid frame pushes toward the airbag mechanism. As the frame makes contact, the mechanism sends a signal to release the airbags. Because the impact is registered immediately by the frame, the bags are deployed almost instantaneously.

However, if the frame has already been damaged, the impact from an object or another vehicle will cause increased initial damage to it. Because the frame is no longer rigid, there will be a delay in it triggering the airbag system. Even if this delay is only a couple of seconds, you or someone else in your vehicle could be seriously injured in that very short period of time.

2. Shifts the Alignment of Your Car's Seat Belts

Another problem that a damaged car frame causes to your safety features is that it creates a misalignment of your vehicle's seat belts. You may not even notice this shift in their position while you are driving. When you brake hard or strike an object, the seat belt's latching mechanism holds down on the belt and tightens it. This tightening of the belt holds you back and keeps you from flying forward. However, if you were to slam on the brakes or be in another accident, the seat belts' latches may not fully engage. Instead of tightening, the belt may remain loose, which could cause you or your passengers to hit your head on the steering wheel or dashboard, or worse, strike the windshield.

Even if you do not think that a slightly bent or warped frame is a big deal, you could be putting you and your passengers' lives at risk if you continue to drive your car without having it fixed. Take your vehicle to a collision repair service as soon as possible so they can assess the actual damage and discuss your options for fixing the frame.