When should struts and shocks be replaced?

Written by FireStone Complete Auto Care and published on https://www.firestonecompleteautocare.com.

When it comes to the comfort of the occupants of a vehicle – as well as its stability, shock absorbers play an essential role.

In its most basic form, a shock absorber merely resembles a hydraulic pump in terms of design and working principle. As a vehicle drives over bumpy road surfaces, the fluid flow in the shock absorber helps convert vibrations into other forms of energy, thus providing for a smoother ride.

By keeping tires in constant contact with the road surface, even on bumpy patches, shock absorbers help drivers remain in control of their vehicles. Failing shock absorbers can lead to several unwanted situations while on the road, and should, therefore, be looked at by a professional or replaced where necessary.

SHOCKS AND STRUTS SUSPENSION

Shocks and struts are two components of your suspension system that keep your vehicle balanced and riding smoothly with all four wheels on the road. We recommend shock and strut inspections for maintaining excellent car handling characteristics. Blown shocks and struts can cause a vehicle to handle unsafely on public roads. Upon inspection, Firestone Complete Auto Care tire and auto service professionals can repair worn out shocks and struts, so your car will handle just like it came new from the auto manufacturer.

HOW DO STRUTS AND SHOCKS WORK?

The suspension on your car is made up of many components, including a set of springs that absorb bumps and road impact, a set of struts that support your springs, and a set of shocks (short for shock absorbers) that limit the bounce your car experiences by absorbing residual movement in suspension springs.

Without properly maintained struts and shocks an unexpected pothole, or even a gravel road, can actually cause the wheels of a vehicle to bounce off of the ground, which can easily lead to loss of control and collision.

REPLACE SHOCKS AND STRUTS ON YOUR VEHICLE

Since well-maintained shocks and struts critically contribute to the overall safety and stability of your vehicle’s steering and suspension, we highly recommend having shocks and struts serviced regularly and well before there is an issue. That said, if you observe any of the following symptoms while you are in your vehicle or looking under the hood, it may mean it has time to bring your vehicle to your local Firestone Complete Auto Care center for service right away:

SHOCK AND STRUT REPLACEMENT SYMPTOMS OBSERVABLE WHILE DRIVING THE VEHICLE

  • Excessive vehicle bouncing
  • The nose of the vehicle dips down, especially when coming to a stop
  • The vehicle sways and leans when turning corners or changing lanes
  • Not enough bounce; the ride seems stiff
  • Steering response is poor, or noise is heard when steering
  • Feels very unstable at high speeds

SHOCK AND STRUT REPLACEMENT VISUAL OBSERVATION SYMPTOMS

  • Vehicle tires are unevenly worn or show abnormally flat areas
  • Shocks or struts show signs of fluid leakage
  • Shock or strut bodies are dented or otherwise physically damaged
  • Bushings or mounts are broken, corroded or otherwise damaged

HOW OFTEN SHOULD I REPLACE MY SHOCKS AND STRUTS?

The interval for shock and strut maintenance will vary depending on vehicle make, model, and driving conditions, so we recommend driver’s always referenced their vehicle owner’s manual for manufacturer-specific service recommendations.

Original post here https://www.firestonecompleteautocare.com/repair/steering-suspension/shocks-struts/.

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