Shocks and struts are necessary parts on your vehicle that keep it riding smoothly. These parts also help your vehicle to stop more quickly should you need to slam on your brakes. Unlike some car parts, shocks and struts do not have a designated mileage in which they need to be replaced. The lifetime of your shocks and struts depends on how frequently your car is driven and how durable they were made by the manufacturer. These are some warning sings that your shocks and struts may need to be replaced.
Bouncing When Going Over Bumps in the Road
Shocks and struts help keep your vehicle stabilized even when you are driving over bumpy roads. If you notice that your car is bouncing excessively on roads that are bumpy or unlevel, this is a good indicator that your shocks and struts need to be replaced.
Dipping, Squatting and Leaning
If your shocks and struts are wearing out, you may also notice that the front end of your car dips downward when applying your brakes or going around curves. If you are going around an especially curvy road and your car seems to lean over to one side, this can also mean your struts and shocks are going bad.
When accelerating your car to move forward after being in a parked position, the front end and rear end should remain level. However, if your shocks and struts need replaced, you may notice that the rear end squats down as you drive forward.
If your tires bounce up and down against the pavement frequently, this can leave areas on your tread that have been scraped off. This is known as tire "scalloping". It occurs due to the shocks and struts being worn and causing the tires to bounce instead of rolling smoothly while you drive.
Shocks and struts have a piston and hydraulic fluid inside of them to absorb the pressure of your vehicle as it moves. A small amount of leakage around the shocks and struts is perfectly normal. If your shocks and struts look excessively wet and oily, this means that a large amount of fluid has escaped and this will prevent them from working properly.
Some drivers may not feel that replacing the shocks and struts is an urgent repair that needs to be done. While worn shocks and struts will not keep your car from running, this can cause gradual damage to other parts of the car that may be more expensive to repair in the long run. It is best to replace your shocks and struts when you first begin to notice any of these warning signs. Contact an auto repair service like Affordable Automotive Service Center if you have specific questions about how your vehicle is functioning.