A shock absorber does the job of keeping the tires on the ground on a bumpy road, helping the driver to have control of the vehicle. As it’s always in use, it wears out quickly and loses the ability to function properly. There are some signs of a failing shock absorber to which you need to pay attention because bad shocks can turn your rides super uncomfortable.
Tell-Tale Signs of a Failing Shock Absorber
Many things can go wrong with shocks, and these will happen right under your nose. Knowing about the symptoms will help you figuring out the source of the problem and making an educated decision.
Uneven Wear on Tires
Shocks assist in keeping the tires on the grounds, so it makes sense that a failing shock absorber won’t let the treads to rub away evenly. It’s a huge red flag because it may cause accidents if the tires don’t stay firmly on the road. Patchy worn out areas increases the risk of hydroplaning and sudden flat.
Vibrations While Driving
It’s another shock absorber problem that you need to worry about. If the shocks are fine, there should not be any vibration felt through the steering wheel. It may happen when the fluid inside the valve or piston seal leaks and causes an overreaction with every tiny bump. You should take immediate action because the shaking could be intense at high speeds, leading to losing control over the car.
Watch out the Noises
Just like vibrations, unusual sound such as rattling or rocking could be the reasons of a failing shock absorber. A heavily worn shock could be the culprit if driving on uneven surfaces feels like experiencing mini earthquakes in every minute. Riding under such a circumstance will be highly uncomfortable. Besides, such massive shaking and rattling will put pressure on other car components, leading to wearing them out before time.
Slow Response of the Gas Pedal
The worse the condition of the shock the more time your vehicle will take to respond to the brakes. A failing shock absorber will increase the stopping distance as much as 20%. For example, if your car used to go no more than two feet before properly stopping, a defective shock can cause it covering more distance after hitting the brake. Such a problem needs immediate repair because it can cause fatal accidents.
Nose Diving While Braking
It’s a severe shock observer problem because it can make the driver lose control of the car, which can be deadly in wet weather. If the fluid in the valve or piston leaks through the seal, the slightest pressure on the brake will result in extreme piston movement within the cylinder. It may cause swerving by shifting the weight of the vehicle to the opposite direction of your turn or a nose dive by swinging the weight more than what is normal at the time of braking.
The Final Words
Take the car to a servicing center should any of these symptoms occur. Diagnose it for a failing shock absorber and other related problems such as issues with brake rotors or tire alignment. It’s better to take action because these can result in life-threatening accidents.