Some vehicles, particularly for the front suspension, have struts. While the terms shocks and struts often are used together, struts are a suspension assembly that includes a shock absorber, but the strut assembly also includes other suspension parts for that wheel, such as a coil spring.  

Several common signs can warn you that shock absorbers or struts need replacing.

Such as when your vehicle bottoms out over railroad tracks, speed bumps or dips in the road, or it keeps bouncing well after the fact. Other signs of car shocks and struts in terrible condition are unusual noises over bumps, excessive body lean or sway in turns, or the vehicle’s front end dives sharply in hard braking. Nasty shocks also can affect steering control and cause uneven tire wear.

Because car shocks wear out gradually, you might not notice because you get used to looser, bouncier ride quality, much like you get used to longer stopping distances as brake pads on your car wear out.

One way to test the condition of the shocks and struts of your car is to push down hard on each corner of a vehicle. If the vehicle continues to bounce after you let go, your shocks need replacing. However, this bounce test for the wonders may require quite a bit of strength, and with many high-riding SUVs and pickup trucks, it isn’t easy to get the leverage you need for a bounce test.

Instead, it would help if you had a qualified automotive mechanic check your shock absorbers and struts when your vehicle is on a lift, such as when you have tires rotated. The mechanic will see if there are significant leaks (shock absorbers are filled with fluid), worn mounts or bushings, or physical damage to the shock absorbers, such as dents, which can impair the bounce control function of the shocks’ piston or cause leaking.

Despite advice to get new shocks or new struts at specific intervals (often from those who sell replacements), such as every 50,000 miles, when you need to change them can vary by vehicle and how and where you take your ride. If your driving frequently is over bumpy, rough roads that put more stress on the shock absorbers and front struts, you will probably need new shocks and support for your vehicle more often than if you drive mainly on smooth pavement. Carrying heavy loads also will wear out shocks faster.

If you have more questions about your shocks – give us a call today at Advanced Auto Care -vista for your questions, concerns, or comments