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Tell-Tale Signs that You Need to Replace Your Car's Struts

By Jacob Razzarian : A how to tutorial about car struts, shocks and struts, car suspension, Automotive with step by step guide from Jacob Razzarian.

For the uninitiated cars can be a big mystery - huge machines filled with a lot of different parts of indeterminate use that all need keeping track of. Most people feel overwhelmed making sure the most basic and obvious parts of their cars are kept in good working order, things like their tires and their engine. Unfortunately this leads a lot of people to neglect smaller parts that are equally important but less noticeable, such as struts. Take a minute to educate yourself on the top signs that you need to replace your struts.

The first thing you need to understand is the fact that struts are often discussed in the same breath as shocks. If you've ever been to a mechanic or read any automotive literature you've probably heard the phrase "shocks & struts" mentioned here and there. Shocks and struts are similar pieces of equipment that often appear alongside each other combining to perform the same basic task as effectively as possible. Keep in mind, however, that not every vehicles has both shocks and struts. Some vehicles may only have shocks, while other vehicles may only have struts. The shock is a smaller part of your car's suspension while the strut is a full assemblage within your suspension. If you don't have struts to replace when the following signs pop up, you'll at least have shocks that would.

Your struts do two basic things. First, they have a place in making sure your car drives as tightly and responsively as possible. Second, they are primarily involved in absorbing shocks while you're driving. Knowing this, it's easy to identify the three main signs your struts have worn down.

Excess Vehicle Rolling or Swaying: If your car is swaying a lot or starting to roll more than normal as you drive it, then chances are your struts have worn down.

That Little "Dip & Bump": If you hit the brakes and the nose of your car dips down and then bumps up a bit, then your struts aren't in good condition.

Tail End Dips At High Speeds: Similarly, if the back of your car dips down when you hit the gas pedal, this is another sure sign of damaged struts.

Unfortunately signs of worn down struts can be hard to notice because they occur over time. As they gradually decrease your suspension and handling abilities, you adapt to this impaired performance as it occurs. Because of this, the absolute best way to determine if you need to replace your struts is simple- if you've driven more than 50,000 miles since you’ve last replaced your struts, then you probably need new ones.

Jacob Razzarian is a writer who specializes in car parts and installation. You can check out his latest website at Monroe Struts.

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