5 Hazards to Watch for When the Roads Start to Thaw



Potholes are an irritating inconvenience that can damage your car's suspension and throw off its alignment. Unfortunately, you may hit plenty more of them when things start to thaw out during the spring.

This time of year is more prone to potholes because when snow thaws, the water seeps into the cracks in the pavement. This softens the gravel, and if it freezes again it expands, cracks and breaks, causing potholes to form.

What's even worse is that potholes are very hard to fix during this time of year. The asphalt mix used during the winter months is a "cold mix" that does not harden like the "hot mix" used during the summer. That means that some potholes have to be filled and re-filled several times until the temperatures warm up for good.

So what can you do about potholes? Not much, really -- besides trying to avoid them when you see them coming, that is. Not only can they damage your car, they can also cause accidents.