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WASHINGTON (WUSA9) -- Drivers are facing this tough choice right now: do you steer around those massive potholes everywhere and risk hitting something or do you just hit the pothole and maybe do damage to your car?

Repairs can be expensive. AAA says a simple wheel alignment will set you back about $50, or you can spend $500 or more replacing a top-of-the-line alloy wheel. Pothole damage is expected to set back American drivers about $6.4 billion this year. In a normal year the cost is about $4.8 billion.

Insurance will pick up some of these costs. There's always a catch though. Here's what you need to know:

Pothole damage is usually covered by collision coverage, BUT you only get coverage if your claim is higher than your deductible. Your claims go on your permanent record. If hitting a pothole causes you to hit another car, liability insurance kicks in.

Before you submit a claim to insurance, it may make sense to do a little homework. AAA recommends that drivers check to see if the state, city or county government reimburses for damage from potholes.

MORE: How To File With State, City, County for Pothole Damage To Your Vehicle

If you have a pothole that is driving you crazy, WUSA9 is helping get them fixed. Here's what you do: send us an email about the pothole by going to TellWUSA9.com. Please include a cross street if you can, and a picture if it is safe for you to take one.

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