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About Front Shocks & Struts

Both shocks and struts regulate the spring movement to hold the tires on the road and protect the vehicle from shocks. The strut is part of the suspension assembly that includes a spring coil and the upper strut mount. Struts allow efficient utilization of space by taking the place of independent shocks, springs, and arms. They carry the weight of the vehicle and provide a focal point for steering. Hydraulic shocks and struts have piston rods connected to pistons that go up and down inside hydraulic fluid-filled cylinders. The pistons are provided with small calibrated fluid passages so that the hydraulic fluid can flow through them as the piston moves in the cylinder. The fluid passes through these small orifices slowly, which slows the motion of the piston and consequently springs and suspensions. Some shock absorbers and struts contain nitrogen gas, which prohibits fluid aeration and allows the suspensions to work longer in high heat.

As your vehicle rolls along the road, the suspension springs absorb bumps and road irregularities. Shocks and struts are used to damp the vibration and oscillation of the wheels after going over a bump or an irregular surface. The springs absorb the shock, whereas the fluid in the suspension systems helps to dampen the shock and maintain proper vehicle control by providing the wheels with proper traction. Shocks and struts are replaced if they suffer from fluid leakages or damaged bushes due to prolonged usage. Damaged or worn out upper strut mounts can cause noise, poor steering response or binding, and incorrect alignment. The upper strut mount contains the spring of the coil and is integrated into the vehicle's body. It has an insulating layer and a bearing where the strut pivots, as the vehicle turns. The insulating part is typically made of rubber bonded to metal. This rubber can break, crack, harden, and cause excessive clearance, metal-to-metal contact, and bearing failure. Struts also have boots or bellows which cover the shaft to protect it from dirt, grime, and leakage. The bumper around the shaft keeps the suspension from slipping out.