A vehicle’s suspension system is the part that connects the vehicle’s body to its wheels.
The function of the suspension is to provide control over the vehicle when it bounces during a rough ride due to bad roads, potholes or bumps.
The suspension is the mechanism that makes driving in a car comfortable. It also causes the hard impact from a bouncing vehicle not to be felt by the passengers.
It is also the job of the suspension to protect the vehicle from damage from the numerous impact it has with the ground during rough rides.
When a car has suspension problems, the symptom is easy to tell, but tracing the exact source of the problem is usually the challenge. The source of the symptom could be a faulty or worn out ball joints, springs, shock absorber, struts, etc.
Knowing the exact source of the problem most time would require the attention of an experience mechanic in order to spot the problem.
It is also important to ask your mechanic to routinely check your tyres and suspension whenever your vehicle is undergoing a regular oil change.
So, how can we tell if our cars have suspension problems?
To know if your suspension system is faulty, here are some of the signs.
- When you hear strange clanking or knocking sounds when driving especially over bumps or at corners.
- Constantly correcting the steering wheel to ensure that the vehicle goes straight.
- If your car rides are no longer smooth, or when every bump causes the vehicle body to “bounce.” A rough ride is an obvious sign that your vehicle’s suspension needs work.
- If your vehicle dips or noses further than anticipated when you apply the brakes, this is a symptom of a worn out shock absorber.
- If your vehicles aligns to one side when driving. This could also be an indicator that the suspension and steering components have become worn out. Another reason for this could be because level of tread wear is different on your tires, or you are in need of a wheel alignment.
- If your vehicle appears to be drifting or pulling away when you are making a turn at a corner. This is a sign that the suspension is no longer carrying out one of its function of keeping the vehicle stable. It is risky driving a vehicle that exhibits these signs. There is also the risk that your vehicle might roll over when in motion. When this is noticed, it is very important to get the vehicle checked by a mechanic as soon as possible.
- If your vehicle bounces repeatedly when it drives into a pothole or a bump. The vehicle suspension is supposed to provide stability when it drives into a pothole. Continuous bouncing is a sign that the vehicle has a worn out or damaged shock absorber.
- If your shock absorber looks oily or greasy. An oily-looking shock absorber is a sign that the shock is damaged. You can tell an oily shock absorber when you look under the vehicle to inspect the shocks. If the shock is stained with greasy fluid, chances are that it has been damaged. It’s important to replace them at that point.
- If you begin to feel the impact when your vehicle drives into a bump or pothole. When the impact of running into a pothole is transferred to your body – or is really felt, your ride is no longer enjoyable or cozy, then its might just be the right time to have your suspension checked.