Did you know that experts recommend inspecting your car suspension system after every 50,000 miles? Despite most vehicles having durable suspension components, they often wear out with time. Failing to repair or replace faulty parts will then affect the functioning and reduce comfort.
The best way to protect your investment and maximize the lifespan of your vehicle is by keeping the suspension system in good condition. This way, you can enjoy rides even on bumpy surfaces and enhance your safety.
Here, we provide various auto suspension system maintenance tips to help you care for your car. We’ll also mention some of the practices you should observe to enhance the lifespan of different components.
1. Check Your Tire Pressure
One effective way to maintain car suspension systems is by checking tire pressure regularly. Properly inflated tires are less prone to blowouts and can help you drive better by increasing balance. They also protect the entire suspension system against damage and reduce fuel usage.
If you have a pressure gauge, it’s advisable to use it for inspection each morning before driving. Make sure that the air level is at the carmaker’s sticker on your manual or drivers’ door.
In case it’s below the recommended level, inflate the tires while ensuring you don’t exceed the limit since the air will expand when you drive. Another way to confirm you have the right amount of pressure is by taking your car to a mechanic for inspection at least once per month.
These can help you maintain your suspension system by balancing the tire pressure with the weight of your vehicle. The experts can also advise you on improving braking performance by maintaining the optimum tire inflation level.
2. Lubricate Joints
Most owners often focus on maintaining specific parts of their vehicle suspension system like springs and shocks. In the process, they forget to attend to the joints connecting different components. This issue then causes some parts to wear out quickly, affecting movement.
Lubricate the joints of your car’s suspension system to boost its lifespan and prevent premature damage. During every oil change, ask your mechanic to inspect these parts and the steering system bushing. This process will help them identify any signs of wear and tear and lubricate accordingly.
If your car is an older model, it may have a tie rod end instead of sealed joints. Due to constant friction caused by road hazards like potholes, these parts tend to wear out quickly.
But, lubricating them will enhance their lifespan and increase wheel alignment. This measure also prevents your fluid from leaking and protects other parts of your steering system.
3. Inspect the Shocks and Struts
Shocks are a vital part of your motor car suspension system. These regulate the movement of springs after hitting a bump or ditch, which prevents excessive bouncing. Struts also serve a similar purpose by absorbing the weight of your vehicle and surface impacts.
Since these components allow you to enjoy smoother rides, it’s essential to maintain them. Looking out for various signs will help you identify damage and fix it before it lowers vehicle efficiency.
Some of the warnings you should watch out for are:
- Unusual tire wear
- Fluid leaking on the outer part of the shocks
- The front part dives more when using the handbrake
- The vehicle tilts to one side during movement
If you notice any of these signs, it’s vital to inspect your shocks & struts. This way, you can determine if they are loose or worn out and replace them for better damping performance.
Besides, you will get better control of your vehicle when driving on rough surfaces and prevent damage to other parts of the suspension and braking systems.
4. Align Your Wheels
When looking for vehicle suspension system maintenance tips, consider aligning your wheels. This process has many perks to protect various parts against premature damage.
For example, it stops your car from pulling to the sides when moving and prevents excessive vibration. Aligning wheels also avoids the premature tire wear caused by constant swaying. Other than that, it gives you better vehicle control and improves safety.
The best way to ensure your tires are in the correct position is by getting professional realignment every 30,000 miles or two years. However, if you use rough roads frequently, consider getting these services at least once per year.
5. Inspect Your Entire Vehicle After an Accident
While linkages and springs are relatively durable, they may suffer damage after a car crash. Failing to repair them will then affect your car’s overall condition and driving ability. It can also lead to secondary damage and more expensive repairs.
If you were in a minor car accident, it’s advisable to get a comprehensive inspection even if no part appears broken. By taking this step, you can determine whether any part loosened or broke during the crash. You can then repair faulty ones and tighten any loose bolts.
On the other hand, if the crash impact is high, it may cause significant damage to your front suspension. In such a case, experts advise car owners to replace this section entirely. Taking this precaution enhances safety by helping you avoid using your vehicle with a bent strut or faulty control arms.
6. Change the Power Steering Fluid
Having enough power steering fluid lubricates your car and reduces the effort needed to turn wheels. If its level goes below the recommended one, you will have to support the entire steering’s weight. This issue can also strain some parts of your suspension system, like the power steering pump.
Ensure smooth vehicle operation and lubrication by inspecting cylinders frequently. If you notice that your power steering fluid is dirty, empty the reservoir and flush it before replacing it with a new package.
Taking this step will suppress foaming and reduce corrosion in the steering pump and power gear. In return, you will be able to navigate your vehicle with less effort and ensure your suspension system works optimally.
Protect Your Car Suspension System
Maintaining your car suspension system will help it function better and prevent damage to specific components. It also gives you better control of your car, improving safety and efficiency.
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