What does a shock absorber do?

All cars have springs that control the height of a vehicle. Shock absorbers control those springs. If your shock absorbers are faulty the spring will bounce your tyre off the road.

If my brakes are in good condition, then should I have a problem stopping?

You will still stop, but a worn shock absorber will affect the efficiency of your stopping distance. Your brakes simply slow the rotation of your wheels. How soon you stop depends on how much contact your tyre has with the road. “That’s the job of your shock absorbers.” One worn shock absorber can increase your stopping distance by up to 2 metres at 50 kph.

If my shock absorbers are worn, will I notice it when I drive my car?

Shock absorbers wear gradually. We often don’t notice they are worn as we adjust our driving habits. Unfortunately this does not limit the potential danger of driving on worn shock absorbers.

If my car has just had a safety check will my shock absorbers be ok?

In a safety check your cars shock absorbers will almost always be checked for leaks or broken mounts. However to ensure your shock absorbers are operating efficiently a car should undergo an electronic shock test or a bounce test by a shock absorber safety expert, at the shock shop it’s free and just takes two minutes. For your peace of mind and the safety of your car and passengers it is worth it.

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Tests have shown that if just one shock absorber is worn, a car may need an extra 2.6 metres to stop. That could be the difference between stopping safely and crashing.