Far too many drivers ignore the signs that there is something wrong with their vehicle’s suspension, but this is not a mistake anyone should make. The suspension is a crucial element of a vehicle’s ability to drive safely, which means that if it’s damaged or broken in some way, it can have a huge impact on the vehicle’s safety.
It’s essential that if you own a car, you know how to spot all of the most common vehicle suspension problems. Because when left unchecked, these problems can spell the end for your car, which is why making sure to look after your car and its suspension system is so important. By taking adequate care of your car and its suspension, not only can you extend its life but also increase its safety, which is, of course, paramount.
A car’s suspension system is made up of a combination of shocks, struts, shock absorbers, tires and various parts that connect your vehicle to its wheels and allow for motion to connect the two. In simple terms, your vehicle’s suspension is what connects the body of your car to the wheels of the car. The suspension system that a car has in place is responsible for regulating how much the car bounces around when it’s driven, impacting how easy it is to drive and control. The suspension system is also in place to protect the vehicle from damage, making it even more important.
The fact is that at some point or another, most vehicles have trouble with their suspension, so knowing how to spot the warning signs of a potential problem and knowing how to deal with that problem is important.
At HB Auto & AC, we know how important it is that our customers have access to high-quality suspension diagnostic and repair services, which is why we are proud to offer a wide range of different options to support a range of suspension-related vehicle problems. When it comes to suspension repair, if you notice that there seems to be an issue, it is crucial that you get the problem seen to as soon as possible, which is where our suspension services come in.
Not only do we offer suspension repair services, we also offer a suspension checkup and maintenance service. When a vehicle is brought into us at HB Auto & AC, our ASE-certified experts and Master Mechanics evaluate the vehicle, by discussing any concerns that you have about the vehicle, test driving the vehicle, inspecting the steering and suspension areas, inspecting the shocks, struts and springs for any signs of damage or wear.
What are the crucial elements of the suspension system?
The system that makes up a vehicle’s suspension is fairly complex, with many different parts involved. However, there are six components that are basic to any suspension system, and these are springs, struts, shock absorbers, anti-sway bars, ball joints, and the spindle.
Springs – These are made from steel and are wound into a spiral shape. They are what allows the car to absorb energy when bouncing around without shaking the car passengers around too much.
Shock Absorbers – Shock absorbers are another kind of spring that has the ability to oscillate, working to minimize the effect of potholes and bumps on a vehicle. Shock absorbers use oil and gasses to help absorb excess energy from bumps in the road.
Struts – A strut simply combines the spring and shock absorber into one unit, and acts as the upper pivot point for the vehicle’s suspension. When a strut is worn, this is when the vehicle tends to sit further to one side than the other.
Anti-roll bars – When turning, natural forces want your car’s body to roll towards the outside turn. When you’re turning in a car, you can feel this force. However, it’s the anti-roll bars that counteract this force and prevent the car from turning over completely when being turned.
Ball Joints – A car’s suspension system is designed to be able to move up and down when on the road, and to do this the control arms are connected to the spindle by ball joints. These joints allow movement in the vehicle’s dimensions and are lubricated with grease and sealed.
Spindles – The spindle is the part of the suspension system that connects to the lower and upper control arms and acts as the centre point for the wheel to rotate around. The spindle needs to remain parallel to the road in order for it to work effectively.
Warning signs that your car may have a suspension problem:
- Your car dips when coming to a stop – if your vehicle dips further than normal when putting your foot on the brakes, this could be a sign that the shock absorbers are worn and may need replacing.
- Your vehicle pulls to one side while you’re driving – this does not necessarily mean that your suspension is damaged but it is a sign that it could be, so it is worth getting your vehicle booked in for a diagnostic assessment.
- One corner is lower than the others – if one corner of your car is visibly lower than the rest of the vehicle, this is a sign that your car’s suspension may be in trouble.
- It feels like the vehicle is drifting when turning a corner – if your car feels like it’s pulling or drifting slightly when you’re pulling a corner, this is a sign that there might be an issue with its suspension.
- Bouncing is more pronounced – when you hit a bump or a pothole your car will jerk about but if the suspension is damaged, the bumps will feel far more pronounced and your car will keep moving for a while after you’ve actually hit the pothole.
The shocks are oily or damaged – when you look at the shocks and struts under your vehicle, you notice that they appear to be oily or greasy, if this is the case then the chances are that fluid is leaking from them and they are not working properly.
Suspension repair services
At HB Auto & AC, we offer a range of suspension repair services, designed to cater to various suspension and steering problems. Whether your vehicle has become slightly bumpy to drive and you are wondering if it may have a suspension problem or one side of your car is hanging lower than the other suggesting a suspension issue, we can help to diagnose the cause of the problem, fix the issue and get your car back on the road as quickly as possible.
Our specialist suspension and steering experts are able to work quickly to diagnose the cause of your vehicle’s suspension or steering problem so that your car can be fixed and got back on the road as soon as possible.
Vehicle Models We Service: