Five Signs of Worn and Damaged Shocks

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Five Signs of Worn and Damaged Shocks
By: Luke Shaff ~ 7/28/2016

Shock absorbers are one of the most vital yet overlooked car components.  They keep the tires in permanent contact with the ground and provide optimum grip when braking and cornering.  Shock absorber replacement is crucial for driver and passenger safety.  Learn to recognize the symptoms of worn shocks and head to an auto repair center should any of these signs become more than subtle.  

The Symptoms

  • Uneven tire wear
  • Delayed steering response and/or noise when wheel is turned
  • Car sways and leans when switching lanes or turning
  • Vehicle bounces even when on a smooth road
  • Car nosedives when braking

As a rule of thumb, shock absorbers should be inspected by an auto maintenance professional every 50,000-75,000 miles.  A checkup may be necessary sooner if you frequently drive on uneven and rough road surfaces.  Due to their placement, hidden behind your wheels, shocks are difficult to inspect.  While most car components can be inspected by the car owner, shocks aren't one of them. Have your shocks inspected by a mechanic to determine their current condition.

It's a serious safety hazard to drive with damage to even one shock absorber. When the shocks are worn, your vehicle:

  • Loses braking efficiency and increases stopping distance by up to 20%.
  • Is more likely to skid or hydroplane on a wet road
  • Places more pressure and stress on the tires and suspension
  • Loses Anti-Lock Braking System efficiency
  • Creates an uneven or oscillating headlight movement, which can distract oncoming drivers
  • Will bounce and rattle, causing driver and passenger discomfort

Take your car to Luke's Automotive if it's long overdue for a shock absorber inspection or if it's never had one; we provide special offers on select services.

Schedule an appointment, or call 425-885-4333.