Happy Shock-tober! It’s hard to know if a part needs replacing when you can’t see it. Here are three tell-tale signs it’s time for new shocks or struts:
1) Stopping distance increases
Most drivers notice the wear on their shocks and struts when quick-stopping distances increase. Shocks and struts are designed to control the tires and to keep them in contact with the road surface as much as possible. If vehicle tires are free to bounce (which is what happens when struts and shocks wear) they are not as effective at gripping the road, so steering, handling, and braking are all affected.
2) Control while turning decreases
When you turn a corner, the process should be smooth and easy to handle— as your car begins to turn, its weight is thrown to the outside of the corner and the shocks help to absorb the energy and stabilize the car.
If the shocks aren't working properly, it can cause body roll (or lean) where your car “rolls” in the direction of the turn.
If you're struggling to maintain control when turning or you notice that you're being thrown to one side of the vehicle, there might be a problem with your shocks.
3) Rides get bumpier
Chances are, you won’t notice this if you’re a daily driver- but your passengers will. Since the wear tends to be gradual, most drivers don’t realize their rides slowly getting more rocky as time goes on. But bumpy rides indicate a huge problem. While shocks and struts provide ride comfort, their primary function, tire control, is a much more important role. Worn struts and shocks will cause a change in tire wear and vehicle handling that should not go unaddressed.
At V&F, we provide the best in shock and strut replacement, with Monroe Shocks and Struts. Monroe offers premium replacement shocks and struts featuring state of the art ride control technologies specifically designed for each vehicle with extensive coverage for European, Asian, and North American passenger cars, light trucks, and SUVs. Now through October 31st, purchase a combination of 2 or 4 qualifying Monroe products and receive up to $80. Call us today at (413) 314-2280 or schedule an appointment online.
Happy Shock-tober! We're using the entire month of October to review suspension basics, maintenance, and repair. This article was originally published in 2018 and has been updated.