Car accidents most often occur within 25 miles of your home. That means they’re not from driving on the freeway, or a crazy person ripping through the drive-thru, they’re happening close to home while you or your neighbors are on auto-pilot. Let’s say you’re driving down the back roads by your house on your way to pick up the kids from soccer practice and BAM! Just like that. You hit black ice and slide into a guardrail. Now, your bumper looks to have suffered some minor damage, there’s a decent dent and some ugly scratches, but it’s still attached. Safe, right? Wrong.
The bumper on your vehicle is aptly named because it’s main purpose is to keep you safe in the account that you hit or “bump” into something in your travels. The original bumper was essentially a hunk of wood bolted onto the front and rear of a vehicle. That wood was meant to cushion the impact of various accidents. New vehicles have beautifully sculpted metal and in some cases plastic covers to hide the extremely important internal pieces of a bumper.
The main internal piece of your bumper is called an impact bar, or in some cases an absorber, depending on the make of your car. That impact bar/absorber is specifically designed as a (generally) one time use part that will absorb the impact of your hit. Underneath that plastic or metal shield is an entire slew of parts that when shifted from even a minor accident can mean the difference from experiencing a stiff neck, to serious injuries.