When you think about it, your car’s suspension really does have quite a difficult job. Year after year, the suspension system is responsible for supporting several tons of metal, and absorbing impacts from curbs, potholes, and other debris. And, just like most other automotive systems, we take our suspensions for granted – until they stop working well.
Suspensions don’t last forever. Depending on how well it’s maintained, your car’s suspension system will last you somewhere between 150,000-250,000 kilometers.
So if you want to ensure that you get the most out of your suspension, you should get it repaired as soon as there is a sign of trouble. In this article, we’ll take a look at 6 of the most common signs that your suspension may be in need of repairs.
1. Got A Bumpy Ride?
This is probably the most obvious sign that your suspension needs to be repaired or maintained. Shocks and struts usually absorb most of the impact from the road, and these impacts aren’t transferred to the cabin.
However, if your suspension is failing, it won’t absorb these impacts as effectively, and this force will be transferred directly to the cabin. If your ride feels “bumpy” even on smooth roads, your suspension probably needs some work.
2. Pulling And Drifting During Turns
If your car isn’t performing well during turns, this is a sure sign that your suspension is failing. Essentially, the suspension isn’t as “stiff” as it used to be, and the shock absorbers are not keeping your vehicle stable throughout the turn.
This can increase your risk of a rollover – if your suspension fails during a high-speed turn, the wheels can “bite” into the road, and cause the vehicle to flip, which can be extremely dangerous.
Because of this, you should take your car to a service station immediately if you experience a large amount of pulling or drifting during your turns.
3. “Dips” When Stopping Firmly
Shock absorbers don’t just absorb the impact of obstacles in the road – they help keep the body of your vehicle in a neutral position when stopping at high speed.
Because of this, a good indicator of a worn-out suspension is “dipping”. If you stop your car firmly, you may feel the body of your car lurching forward somewhat, and moving downwards, nose-first.
This should be a major concern, as poor suspension can increase the time it takes to stop by over 20% – and that can be the difference between avoiding an accident entirely, or totaling your car.
4. Tires That Are Unevenly Worn
Now, unevenly worn tires alone aren’t quite enough to diagnose a faulty suspension – worn tires can be caused by under (or over) inflation, worn-out brake pads, and even misaligned tires.
However, you should still examine your tire treads and look for unevenly worn spots, bald patches, and other signs of uneven wear. This can be a sign that one or more of your shock absorbers isn’t holding your car evenly, and is putting excessive wear on a particular tire.
5. “Oily” Shocks
Even if you don’t know much about cars, this is easy to test. If you’ve noticed any kind of oil or strange fluid leaking from beneath your car, you should get underneath your car and locate the shock absorbers.
Take a look at them, and touch each one. Do you see or feel any kind of oily substance? – are they covered with any kind of oily substance? If you do, your suspension is likely leaking fluid.
A leaky suspension is a failing suspension – so get it inspected by a professional ASAP to see what can be done to fix your vehicle.
6. The “Bounce Test”
If you think that your suspension is going bad – but you’re still not convinced – try this quick and easy test.
Go to the front of your car, and lean down on the hood with all of your weight. Push down a couple of times to “bounce” the front of the car, then release and watch the car move. Do this again at the rear of the vehicle.
What you’re looking for is any excessive bouncing. Your car should not “bounce” more than 2 or 3 times after you release it. If it bounces excessively, this is a sure sign that your suspension is failing, and needs to be repaired as soon as possible.
Got A Faulty Suspension In Winnipeg? Ride Time Can Fix It Up!
Ride Time doesn’t just sell fantastic used cars – we also have one of the largest service bays in all of Winnipeg! If you think your car has suspension issues, bring it in today! Our experienced, professional mechanics will take a look at your vehicle, and let you know what’s going on.
We pride ourselves on professionalism, affordability, and customer service. So don’t risk driving around on a faulty suspension – come to Ride Time today, and we’ll take great care of you and your vehicle.