As mother nature slowly transforms from summer to fall, we are reminded of many wonderful fall experiences; pumpkin carving, bonfires, haunted attractions, trick or treat and Shocktober.
What is Shocktober? Shocktober is a time of the year dedicated to reminding drivers about the condition of their shocks or struts. All vehicles have shocks or struts as part of their suspension system and while it is easy to forget, you should have your shocks or struts checked every time your vehicle is serviced for tire, brake or alignment services.
Why is the condition of your shocks or struts important? The interconnected undercar parts (tires, brakes and ride control) work together to provide proper steering, stopping and stability. If these parts are not operating at standard performance levels, they could affect a drivers ability to avoid an accident.
In fact, your shocks and struts are so important that Monroe Shocks and Struts even developed a three-part process for professional technicians to follow to ensure your shocks or struts keep you safe.
The process is known as the Safety Triangle inspection. No I didn’t say the one hit wonder “Safety Dance” by Men Without Hats, the Safety Triangle has never had a long-distance dedication by Casey Kasem, however having a Safety Triangle inspection will ensure your safety on all trips.
The Safety Triangle consists of three key areas; steering, stopping and stability. In terms of steering, the importance of your shocks or struts is to help evenly distribute your vehicles weight over all four tires, improving handling. When it comes to stopping, shocks or struts in combination with your brakes help your vehicle stop sooner under rough driving conditions by keeping your tires in contact with the road. Lastly, shocks or struts working with your tires help maximize the tire-to-road contact providing vehicle stability and safety by minimizing weight transfer.
Over time your shocks or struts will begin to wear down. The challenge with shocks and struts is that it is difficult to know exactly when the right time is to replace them. The rate of wear depends on many variables, such as road and environmental conditions, your driving style and vehicle load. If you still have your original shocks or struts and more than 80,000 miles on your vehicle, it’s time to get them replaced.
More importantly, the physical location of your shocks and struts can be a challenge to inspect or fix. For the inexperienced, there is a risk of serious injury if not performed properly. It’s always best to have a trained professional inspect and make any repairs.
5 Signs it may be time to have your shocks or struts need a Safety Triangle inspection at a Tire Discounters location:
1 – Knocking or clunking noises when driving over bumps – If you hear excessive knocking or clunking noises while driving over a bump, there is a good chance that it isn’t the background drums in Safety Dance. If the sounds are located near the front or rear tires, it could be that your struts are worn out or broken.
2 – Excessive vehicle bouncing – If you’re traveling down a perfectly paved road and the ride feels more like you are bouncing around like an off-road race across rough terrain this could be a sign of worn or broken struts.
3 – Uneven tire wear – If you notice uneven wear or the tires are cupping (looks like hollowed spots on the tread), chances are your tires are taking more punishment than they are supposed to be taking. The load of your vehicle is not being absorbed as it should. This is a very common characteristic when the struts are worn out.
4 – Your vehicle is swaying or leaning on turns -Even on the slightest turns, your vehicle will have a leaning feel or swaying motion if your shocks and struts are starting to go bad.
5 – Fluid leaks from the strut – The unusual leaking of hydraulic fluid from your shocks or struts is a sure sign to have them inspected by a professional.
At Tire Discounters, we don’t trick you, we treat you like family, except we might hog all the Skittles. Shocktober is a great time to have your shocks or struts checked. Let our ASE-certified suspension experts perform the Safety Triangle inspection on your vehicle.
In addition to the Safety Triangle inspection, we offer seven different courtesy checks and an extensive 22-point safety check. Don’t let your car turn into that possessed car Christine, have your shocks or struts checked and have the peace of mind knowing that your vehicle is ready for Shocktober!
If you need new shocks or struts, this is a perfect time to take advantage of Monroe’s, Feel the Difference Guarantee. A risk-free trial of 90 days or 1,000 miles on qualifying new Monroe shocks and struts. Click here to see a great deal form Tire Discounters and Monroe Shocks & Struts.