When is it time to have shocks replaced?
*This post brought to you by Monroe® Shocks and Struts. All opinions are 100% those of author.
Other factors to consider:
-Do road indents ( potholes) seem unusually harsh while driving over them?
-Does the vehicle bounce or float excessively?
-Does the vehicle dive, squat, roll or sway rapidly during steering or handling maneuvers?
-Does the suspension top or bottom out abruptly?
-Is the vehicle difficult or stressful to control at highway speeds, during windy conditions or when loaded?
-Has the ride quality changed over time? For instance, have you tested a newer car lately or have you taken a trip with someone whose vehicle has less miles? How did that handle compared to your current vehicle?
The appearance of your tires can also be a clue. Tires generally wear evenly across the whole surface of the tread. You know your own car better than anyone, so if you notice your car just feeling “off”, it’s time to have it looked at. You might be experiencing any number of tire issues, as shown below. Other factors could also be the cause – alignment, suspension, etc.
Having your vehicle aligned and tires balanced is a necessity. When tires aren’t properly aligned with the surface of the road that results in camber wear and depending on the positive or negative camber wear you’ll see wear on the inside or outside edge. You can also see toe wear if your vehicle isn’t properly aligned. Toe wear means that the tire may point “toe in” or “toe out”. This will cause rapid wear to your tires so it’s really important to get the alignment angle correct. Many times when you have your oil changed, they will offer to check the alignment – let them! Or you might even take advantage of the Monroe Shock and Struts Safety Triangle inspection – they are the real experts! You can locate a shop that does inspections, on the Monroe website: http://www.monroe.com/en-US/dealer-locator/.
Other tire wear includes cupped wear and wear caused by tire fault or misuse. Cupped wear is when cupped or scalloped dips appear around the surface of the tread. This could be caused by worn out suspension parts. Make sure they aren’t loose or bent. Another cause is worn out shock absorbers or unbalanced tires. Sometimes, the wear is completely in the hands of the vehicle operator. Skidding across a road surface will certainly scuff away the tread in one area of a tire. Do that consistently and well, you’ll soon need a new set. Of course, it’s not always driver error and sometimes a brake lockup is due to a brake malfunction or emergency situation. Carefully examine the tread on your tires should you notice any skidding.
Flat spot wear can be caused when tires sit in oil, fuel or other chemicals. I was completely unaware that this could occur, but it is definitely something to be aware of!
Monroe Shocks and Struts have the latest technology, not only to ensure a smoother, safer ride but to maintain the life of your vehicle. Have your shocks and struts checked out by a certified technician. After all, they are the pros and they can feel even the slightest pull or hear the smallest noises that are telltale signs that it’s time to replace your shocks or struts. Accidents might be prevented when everything is working correctly.
Let’s all do our part to keep ourselves and others safe out on the road!