Shanghai Komman Vehicle Component Systems Stock Co., Ltd.
Shanghai Komman Vehicle Component Systems Stock Co., Ltd.

How to Determine If Your Car's Shock Absorbers are Malfunctioning?

May 18 , 2023

Car shock absorbers

Car shock absorbers are an important part of the car suspension system. Their function is to absorb the impact of spring rebound shock on vibration and deformation, as well as absorb the impact of the road. It directly affects the comfort and handling of the vehicle, which affects our driving safety.

The safety and comfort of the car are important indicators for us to evaluate a car, and the contribution of car shock absorbers to the safety and comfort of the car is invaluable.

First, as long as the car is moving, the shock absorber is constantly working. The life of the shock absorber is not like other parts, it can be used for a long time, and it basically will not cause any safety issues to the driver as long as it doesn't run on mountain roads. However, the ride is definitely not comfortable, with a lot of noise, which may cause motion sickness.

Functions of shock absorbers

From the name "shock absorber", it seems that the vehicle's vibrations are mainly absorbed by the shock absorber, but actually not. The energy generated by the vehicle's vibration when passing through rough roads is mainly absorbed by the spring, and the spring will produce rebound oscillations after absorbing the vibration. At this time, the shock absorber is used to slow down the vibrations caused by the spring.

When the shock absorber fails, the car will bounce due to the inability of the shock absorber to absorb the energy of the spring bounce when passing through rough roads, affecting driving stability and comfort.

In short, the shock absorber's main function is to suppress the spring's bounce and quickly dampen the car body's bounce. The shock absorber does not require maintenance during normal use, and only needs to be replaced when it fails. Two methods can be used to determine whether the shock absorber is damaged:

  • Drive on a road with poor conditions for 10KM before stopping the car and touching the shock absorber shell with your hand. If it is not hot enough, it means that there is no resistance inside the shock absorber and it doesn't work. At this time, you can add a proper amount of lubricating oil. If the shell heats up during driving, the shock absorber is lacking oil, otherwise it has failed;

  • When the car is at a stop, if we press down on one corner of the car body and then release it, the car body will rebound under spring force. If it quickly tends to stabilize after rebounding, the shock absorber is good. If it keeps oscillating a few times before stopping, the shock absorber's damping effect is poor.

In addition, the lifespan of the shock absorber is around 80,000 kilometers. If one is leaking oil, it means the other three are also about to fail; it is more economical to replace all four at once instead of multiple replacements. As for how to choose, it depends on the individual, but it is necessary to replace at least two, after all, safety comes first.

Moreover, shock absorbers may produce sound faults in actual use, mainly due to the collision between the shock absorber and the steel plate spring, the frame or axle, damage or detachment of the rubber pad, deformation of the shock absorber dust cover, insufficient oil, and other reasons. The root cause should be identified and repaired.

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