Drove Over Curb in Parking Lot: Quick Fixes and Prevention Tips

It’s a common mishap: you’re maneuvering in a parking lot and suddenly find yourself driving over a curb. While it may not seem like a huge deal at the moment, there could be underlying issues that affect your vehicle’s performance and safety.

Driving over a curb can potentially cause damage to your car’s control arm, tie rod, or even rotors, leading to veering, rattling noises, and a shaking steering wheel source.

Depending on the height of the curb and your vehicle’s speed at impact, the suspension system might also be at risk, further impacting your car’s performance source.


Common Reasons for Driving Over a Curb


One common reason for driving over a curb is distraction. This might occur when a driver is unsafely using their phone, talking to passengers, or adjusting the radio. For example, if a driver is backing up while texting, it increases the chance of accidentally hitting the curb.

Poor Visibility

Another cause for this issue is poor visibility. Factors like rain, fog, or glare from the sun can obscure a driver’s view. A driver may unknowingly hit a curb when attempting to park their vehicle under these conditions.

Tight Spaces

Tight spaces also contribute to curb incidents. In crowded parking lots, navigating around other vehicles while driving or backing up may lead to accidentally driving over a curb. A typical example is in a shopping mall parking lot during the holiday season.


Lastly, inexperience is a major factor. New drivers may struggle with spatial awareness or underestimate their vehicle’s dimensions when parking. They might clip or drive over a curb due to their lack of experience or practice.

Drove Over Curb in Parking Lot


Effects on Vehicle Components

Wheels and Rims

Hitting a curb can result in bent or damaged rims. It may also lead to uneven tire wear and sidewall damage.

Suspension System

The impact could lead to suspension damage, causing your car to bounce or feel less stable. Suspension components like struts or shocks may be affected.

Steering System

Misaligned wheels are common after curb strikes, often causing your car to pull to one side. Tie rods can also get damaged, leading to steering difficulty.


Driving over a curb at high speed could damage your car’s transmission. However, if you were going less than 5 mph, the risk of damage is lower.


Damage Assessment and Repair

Visual Inspection

Begin by examining your vehicle for visible damage, such as dents or scrapes. Take pics of the affected areas for documentation purposes.

Mechanical Inspection

Check for potential damage to the control arm or tie rod, as these parts are susceptible to issues after hitting a curb. In cases of severe damage, the engine may be impacted, requiring a visit to a dealership or mechanic for further evaluation.

Repair Costs

ComponentRepair Cost Range
Control Arm$100 – $500
Tie Rod$50 – $250
Engine (if affected)Varies

Keep in mind, minor hits may result in simple alignment fixes, while more substantial impacts can result in more costly repairs. Always consult a professional for accurate estimates and advice.

Preventative Measures

Proper Parking Techniques

To avoid driving over curbs, practice proper parking techniques. Stay in lanes and use directional signals. Anticipate the actions of other drivers.

Adjusting Mirrors

Check your mirrors for blind spots and potential obstacles. Adjust them for better visibility when necessary.

Increasing Vehicle Clearance

If your vehicle is low, consider increasing its clearance. This can help prevent damage from driving over curbs.

Drove Over Curb in Parking Lot


Choosing Appropriate Parking Spaces

Select parking spaces that don’t require tight turns or maneuvering. This reduces the risk of accidentally driving over a curb.

Through these preventative measures, you can protect your vehicle’s exhaust system. Also, consider using an alternative browser for accessing online resources about parking safety.

Adjusting MirrorsImproved visibilityMight not eliminate all blind spots
Increasing Vehicle ClearanceLess damage from curbsCostly or difficult to implement
Choosing Appropriate Parking SpacesEasier to parkLimited availability in busy areas

Learn from the Experience

Take Responsibility

Accept that you’ve driven over a curb in a parking lot. It’s important to recognize the mistake to avoid repeating it.

Seek Professional Advice

Check for damage, like issues with your car’s oil pan. It’s best to consult a mechanic.


  • They can spot hidden damage
  • Proper repair


  • Potential repair cost
  • Time-consuming

Be Mindful in the Future

Follow parking lot safety tips and be cautious with an out-of-date browser.


  • Stay in lanes
  • Obey stop signs
Safety TipsResult
Use directional signalsBetter communication with other drivers
Anticipate the actions of other driversAvoid potential accidents
Be mindful of pedestriansEnsure their safety

Remember to take responsibility, consult professionals, and follow safety guidelines.

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Sean Mendez

Hi, I am Sean, a self-confessed petrolhead. I live in Boise, Idaho with a busy family of four and our energetic Labrador retriever. Thank you for visiting my website. You can find my email on the contact page.

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