How does vehicle suspension and Shock Absorbers work?

Shock absorbers and vehicle suspension are integral part of any vehicle. Without it, you will be in for a bumpy ride, literally.  Having a well working suspension system not only enhances the performance of the vehicle, but it increases the aesthetic too.

Some car boffins opt to “drop” the vehicle’s suspension. This is done by replacing the factory issued suspension with an aftermarket option that is shorter and stiffer.

Below we discuss how suspension and shock absorbers work together to give us the ride of our lives, all the time.

Shock Absorbers


What is vehicle suspension and how does it work?

The job of the vehicle suspension is to maximize the friction between the tyres and the ground. This is to improve driving ability, braking and steering.

Some of the components of vehicle suspension kit.

Springs – They are energy storing. The types of springs vary as follows: Constant rate springs and Progressive springs.

Anti Roll Bars – These bars connect the right wheel to the left wheel. They twist themselves, in order to resist roll.



What are shock absorbers?

Shock Absorbers are hydraulic pumps that help control the impact and rebound movement of a vehicle while it is moving.  Another common name for them is Damper.

So what do Shock absorbers actually do?

Not only do they control the movement of springs in suspension, but they also keep your tyres on the road. If your tyres’ ability to touch the ground is reduced or broken, this compromises the ability of your car to brake, steer and drive.

Types of shock absorbers

Conventional telescopic shock absorbers -This is a relatively cheaper, simpler type of shock absorber. It is replaced instead of repaired.

Strut type shock absorbers – Struts replace part of the suspension system and is built to cope with greater loads.

Spring seat shocks – This type shows the same characteristics as both the Telescopic and the Strut type shocks.

How does vehicle suspension and shock absorbers work together?

The shock absorber is coupled, by vertically submerging it in the centre of an upright spring. The suspension allows the tyres to move up to absorb bumps in the road while the shock absorbers prevent your vehicle from bouncing up and down.

How do you know if your vehicle’s suspension needs replacing?

When you start feeling every bump in the road, that’s a sign that you need to get to a suspension specialist and have everything checked to ensure it’s on full working order.

Often the car starts drifting or pulling when you are turning.

Damaged or oily shocks are definitely a sign that a replacement is needed.

If you suspect that your vehicle is in need of suspension and shock repairs, contact us here.

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