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Stop Bouncing Around!

By: Lora Crouch Woodys

Has your vehicle been jumping around and shaking you up?This may be a sign that your shocks are shot!What are shocks you ask? They are one of the most important parts on your vehicle! They are found mounted between the wheels and the frame.Woodys

I know what you are thinking…like I look under my vehicle very often to know that. I was the same way until I researched and found out how dangerous it is to have bad shocks. Let me give you a visual of what job the shock absorbents hold.Imagine you are driving down the road and you hit a hole or a raised spot. The springs of the shock absorb the resultant shock by expanding and contracting. My mind is blown that these springs carry the weight of your entire vehicle in this instance!Really, if you think about it, they are kind of your cars Superman!Woodys

Why is this critical you ask? We all know that we need all 4 wheels on the ground to be safe and to not bounce all over the place. Well, if you have just one bad shock and you have to hit your brakes for any reason, your tires can actually leave the ground up to 2″. I know that doesn’t sound like a lot, but for your safety and others it truly is a lot. Every second your tire is not on the ground can lead to an accident. If you are in a high speed situation and have to brake you can actually lose 100 feet in stopping power.

Trust me you do not want to be like a rock skipping over water!Woodys

How do you know when your shocks need replacing? Since they are not like wiper blades and you cannot obviously see when they need changed, you will need to watch for these symptoms.

  • Bouncing
  • Hard Riding
  • Swaying at HWY Speed
  • Wallowing around Corners

I do suggest however, to be proactive and treat your vehicle as you would your family. Get those annual check ups scheduled and ask your mechanic any questions you may have about the well being of your vehicle. As you see shocks are not just simply about giving your vehicle a smooth ride. They are not just a luxury item rather they are your integrate vehicle control, so when they fail your car becomes a hazard to both you and the other drivers on the road. So don’t go cheap out on these important components. Be smart, Be safe, and please replace your shocks whenever necessary.