The role of shock absorbers and the risks of damaged shock absorbers

The primary role of a shock absorber is to maintain the wheels in permanent contact with the road and to ensure a maximum adherence, essentially in bends or while braking phases. This function “connection on the ground” is in fact one of the showpieces of the vehicle’s security.

Shock Absorbers and springs must imperatively be replaced by pair (front or rear) in order to guarantee the vehicle's balance, its road holding and efficient braking.

New tires and new brakes do not guarantee the security of the vehicle if the shock absorbers do not function suitably

Risks of damaged shock absorbers:

A damaged shock absorber could lead to many dangers:

1st Risk:

Skidding: Skidding when turning, aquaplaning

2nd Risk:

Extended stopping distance: At 50km/h the braking distance is extended over 2 meters, which could lead to an accident

3rd Risk:

Uneven headlight level: The oscillations of the undercarriage (rolling, pitching) prevent the beam of the headlights from preserving its horizontality.

4th Risk:

Premature wear of many parts of the vehicle: Bearings of wheel, suspensions, cardan joints, driveshaft, gear box, kneecaps, steering gear boxes, tires, etc.

Signs of damage:

  • Oil leak
  • Premature wear and tear of tires
  • Abnormal suspension noise
  • The vehicle leans forward “nose down” when braking
  • Excessive movements, bouncing, skidding when turning
  • Steering wheel vibration
  • Distortion of the shock absorber’s body
  • Broken fixing component

Causes of damage:

  • The vehicle ‘s driven distance
  • Rough roads
  • Driving style
  • Overloaded vehicle

A shock absorber oscillates 5000 times per kilometer. Therefore, it is recommended to carry out a regular inspection every 20 000km and replace them every 80 000km.