As parts of a suspension system go, shocks and struts are critical.
Shocks (also called shock absorbers) are usually mounted vertically behind your vehicle's tires. Their hydraulics minimize spring movement. Struts (also called strut assemblies), on the other hand, are often mounted horizontally; they're usually made up of a spring and a shock, they're weight-bearing, and they look like extensions of wheels. As an aside, though some vehicles may have shocks on one axle and struts on the other, not all vehicles actually have struts.
What they do, at any rate, is help your vehicle remain stable, and they do it, as you may have inferred by now, by controlling the activity of the suspension's coil springs. This does several things in turn. For one, it helps maintain wheel alignment. Secondly, it minimizes body roll. Third, it helps your tires stay on the road. Fourth, it keeps your vehicle handling and braking consistently. Put simply, driving remains enjoyable.
Occasionally, though, one, the other, or both can wear out. In this cases, repair isn't usually advisable; replacement is recommended. If the shocks and struts in your ride have started going bad, you're in luck: there are signs that'll let you know. Look for:
- Rough ride quality
- Excessive vehicular forward lean when stopping
- Unusual bouncing
- Pulling to the side during a turn
- Worsening steering response
- Loss of control at higher speeds
- Uneven tire treads or flat areas on your tires (i.e., cupping; not otherwise caused by misaligned wheels)
- An oily or greasy film on the parts
Fortunately, these symptoms usually show up long before the things get worse. If you're seeing them, do a suspension inspection and replace any shock or strut that the results indicate. Be sure to review the condition of the system every 50,000 miles or so, too, according to most owner's manuals; double-check yours for the last word on when to do that.
When it's time to order parts, you'll find plenty to choose from, right here our auto parts store.
Maintain Your Suspension the Right Way, with Genuine GM Shocks and Struts
Those your brand manufactures will fit the model you drive, guaranteed. You can buy them online, directly from GM, right here. Order now, and we'll ship them to your door.
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