Shock and Strut: Bad symptoms and Replacement Cost

Last Updated on May 12, 2019 by themechanic

The shocks and struts are very important components when it comes to stabilizing and securing the body of the vehicle. Shocks, also known as shock absorbers, are responsible for minimizing the movement of the suspension and spring. In other words, shocks prevent your vehicle from bouncing around as it moves on the road. Struts are components of the suspension system which are attached to the chassis. The job of the struts is to hold up the vehicle and support all its weight. They do this in conjunction with the coil spring and regular spring. Therefore, you have two components who work together to support the weight of the vehicle and keep it from bouncing around as you drive.

5 Bad Symptoms

Obviously, if the shocks and struts were to ever go bad, it would cause a very uncomfortable driving experience for you. Not only that, it would be extremely dangerous for your vehicle too. Other components in your vehicle run the risk of getting damaged from the bouncing and destabilization. These symptoms must be addressed or else you’re looking at hundreds or even thousands of dollars in eventual repair costs.

To recognize the symptoms of bad shocks and struts, below are the top 5 symptoms that you can expect to experience.

1) Strange Sounds

If you’re driving and you hear strange knocking or rattling sounds, then it means you have bad struts or shocks. These sounds are likely due to the weight of the body not being firmly supported as it should be. The body may rattle around as a result. As time goes on, the sounds will become louder and more annoying.

2) Bouncing

You step on the gas pedal and experience a lot of bumpiness and bounciness as you move faster. If that is the case, then your struts and shocks are definitely the cause of this. The bouncing will start off minor, but it will quickly escalate as the problem continues to go unfixed. Meanwhile, all that bouncing is slowly damaging your suspension system, wheels, tires, and brakes.

3) Leaking Fluid

There are seals on shocks which keep hydraulic fluid trapped inside of it. If these seals were to get damaged, the hydraulic fluid will come out. It will first leak onto the body of the shocks and then drop onto the ground below. The more fluid that is lost, the less functional the shocks will be. This means more bounciness and a lot of vibrations.

4) Uneven Tire Treads

When your car bounces on the road because of bad struts and shocks, the tire treads tend to get worn out faster too. That is because some areas of your tires are not touching the road. This means the areas that are touching the road will get worn out, while the other areas will stay the same. As a result, you have uneven tire treads which make vibrations and steering worse.

5) Swerving

When you go to make a turn with the brake pedal pressed, the body weight of the vehicle will move away from the direction you’re turning. Then you will be swerving on the road.

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Replacement Cost

The shocks and struts are considered an assembly in the suspension system and they’re usually replaced together. If you need to replace your shocks and struts because they’ve gotten damaged or gone bad for some reason, you can expect to pay anywhere from $320 to $430 to replace them. The parts cost alone is about $210 to $280, while the labor costs are around $110 to $150. You also have the added fees and taxes to worry about too. In all, the total amount will be in the $350 to $450 range.

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