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Shocks & Struts 101

Shocks & Struts 101

Shocks and struts play an integral role in your car’s suspension system and they keep your ride smooth and safe. Below, find some terms to help you understand the basics of shocks and struts, and be sure to bring your car into Sears Auto Center for a free steering and suspension check.

Chassis: framework of the vehicle; if wheels and transmission are included, the assembly is called a rolling chassis

Hydraulic fluid: transfers power between the shock or strut and the wheels

Shocks:  shock absorbers are individual components of the suspension system; hydraulic dampening devices designed to limit or dampen the motion of springs as they respond to road irregularities

Struts: major structural components of vehicle chassis and suspension systems; act as shock absorbers and control up and down movement of springs

The difference: Struts take the place of the upper control arms, and the upper strut mount bears the weight of the vehicle. Struts cost more because they are a larger assembly, require special tools and equipment for installation, and take longer to install.

Suspension system:  includes springs, shock absorbers, and linkages that connect a vehicle to its wheels and allows relative motion between the two; contributes to the vehicle’s handling and braking, and keeps vehicle’s occupants comfortable and relatively isolated from road noise, bumps and vibrations

The Role of Shocks and Struts Infographic

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