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What Advantages Do Aftermarket Shocks Offer?

Aftermarket shock absorbers can offer improved handling at high speed or (particularly for trucks and SUVs) when driving in very rocky or bumpy conditions. Some aftermarket shocks are even adjustable, so the owner can fine tune the ride to his or her liking. In general these adjustments require changing something (such as turning a dial) under the car, but a few are electronically adjustable from the cockpit. High-quality aftermarket shocks may also be more robust than stock. This doesn’t matter very much for cars but is a significant issue for off-road or towing trucks.


Vehicle veering or sliding in side winds? This could mean you’re dealing with a shock absorber problem. Worn or leaking shocks can lead to unsteadiness on the road. You shouldn’t have to “correct” your car, even in mild gusts.

Uneven wear appearing on your tires. Big red flag! When your shocks are worn, they can’t keep your tires firmly on the road. The result? Patchy areas of wear. Tires must maintain uniform contact with the road. Uneven tire wear can increase your risk of hydroplaning and leave you more prone to a sudden flat.

Rocking, rolling and rattling. It could point to worn shocks when your vehicle shakes, rattles, and rocks a little too hard when driving over minor road bumps or railroad tracks. Since a vehicle’s shocks are responsible for controlling the impact and vibration of the suspension, worn ones won’t be able to soften the blows of the road.

Swerving and dipping when applying your brakes. If bringing your vehicle to a stop causes the front end to dip noticeably or, worse yet, results in any swerving, worn shocks may be the culprit. Watch out, since this symptom could prove especially dangerous in wet weather.

Excessive vibration in your steering wheel. Traveling over an uneven road surface can naturally cause the steering wheel to vibrate a little, but the vibration should go away as soon as you reach a smoother surface. If the vibration remains constant while you’re driving, it might be a sign that there’s a serious problem with your shocks. 

Delayed or longer stopping distances. Worn shock absorbers can increase your braking distance by 20%, which could mean the difference between a safe stop and an accident. This symptom may have you coming in for a brake inspection, which is A-OK.

No matter which symptoms your vehicle may be experiencing our technicians here at Full Throttle Parts will be able to diagnose the real culprit, whether it’s worn shocks, or something else entirely.