Pothole Season: How Do They Happen?


Have you ever wondered how potholes appear? You take the same route home every day, hundreds of days in a row, and then one day, all of a sudden … BAM! Your car hits a hole the size of a pet cemetery plot.

The Chicago Tribune wrote all about the potential explosion of potholes when temperatures change suddenly. The newspaper even hit up the experts, who say that, here in Chicago, we’re in for some bad roads this spring thanks to February’s long stretch of frigid weather, followed by a sudden warm-up.

"Whenever you get freeze-thaw cycles, you can almost hear the pavement cracking," said David Schulz, director of the Infrastructure Technology Institute at Northwestern University.

How does a pothole actually happen? According to the Tribune and the experts it spoke with, “it's basic physics. Water collects under roadways, freezes and expands, weakening the pavement above. After the water dissipates, a void is left, and the roadway collapses under traffic.”

[Pothole Crews Say Freeze-Thaw Cycle Just Warming Up, Chicago Tribune]

By David Thomas | February 22, 2007 | Comments (8)
Tags: Safety


I can't believe they did a story about pothole formation and didn't mention snowplows.

sum dude

Potholes are a rather nasty problem, specially for ppl with lowriders (which i dont have).

well low riders are stupid, but people with sports cars suffer- we shouldn't be forced to have a chevy tahoe for a comfortable ride

Ken L.

Chevy Tahoes, like most body on frame trucks, especially those with a live rear axel (mine included) feel imperfections on the roads a lot more than those riding in ultra lux vehicles like the Lexus LS 460. However, trucks can withstand the impact more often with its sturdier setup. Guys with sport cars, well…you’ll just have to dodge them with your razor sharp handling toys.

sum dude

i know how that is, in my old Bronco 2, you can really feel the road. I actually prefer to feel the road and imperfections dont know why but i cant stand ridin in cars where you cant feel a thing, same reason i like to hear engine noise, sure people find it annoying but it helps tell how the car is doin and stuff.


If you're driving fast enough your suspension doesn't have time to feel it;) Ha.

hey i like ur crs it is awsome


hey i like ur cars

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