Shock absorbers do as their name suggests--they absorb bumps and other movements that occur as you drive. When shock absorbers are working properly, your car drives smoothly. If, after checking the following signs of deteriorated shocks you think you need shock absorber replacement, give Ralph Thayer Automotive a call.
Bouncing when you are driving is a sign of shock absorbers in need of replacement. This can occur when you hit dips in the road, or go over speed bumps or railroad tracks. The car may also do a nosedive when you brake. As you come to a stop, the front of the vehicle will point toward the ground. This can cause longer brake time and a momentary loss of steering.
Even on the slightest turns or changing lanes on the highway, it will feel as if your car is leaning or swaying to one side. This will make it seem as if the car may roll over.
When you accelerate, momentum of the vehicle is transferred to the rear of the car, which causes the front end to rise slightly into the air, much like what happens when a speed boat cruises across the water.
If your tires are cupped, which refers to looking as if they have little scoops removed from them, this is a good indication that your shocks need replacement. The cupping occurs from the bouncing, which puts pressure on the tires.
How often your car's shocks require replacement depends on a variety of factors. If you drive over rough, bumpy roads frequently, this will put more stress on your car's shocks and will result in more frequent replacement. Carrying heavy loads will also cause more wear and tear on the shocks.
If you notice that your vehicle seems to be handling differently and suspect that your shocks are at fault, give us a call at Ralph Thayer Automotive for shock absorber replacement.