The Average Shock and Strut Replacement Cost
Shocks and struts are very important to your vehicle’s suspension. When they’re in good order, they ensure that your vehicle maintains safe handling, as well as mitigate bumps and vibrations.
While no maintenance schedule exists for these parts, they need to be changed. How often they get changed depends on many things.
In this article, we’ll cover a few subjects related to shocks and struts. First, we will talk about our main topic – the average cost of shock and struts nationwide.
Keep in mind that these numbers represent the national average. But it will give you a starting point as far as budget goes if you’re faced with this automotive problem.
Nationwide, the average cost for this type of replacement ranges from $488 to about $600. Anywhere from 50-60% of that cost covers labor, with the remaining 40-50% of the cost going towards parts. Sales taxes were not factored in to these estimates, since your state will have a different rate than others.
Another factor that could affect your cost is the make and model of your car. Some were fitted with shocks on all four wheels, while others have struts all the way around. Still others have struts on the front, and shocks on the back.
These are the only three possibilities. For example, you won’t ever see a shock on your front driver’s side, with a strut on the front passenger side. These parts are different, and are not interchangeable.
Now let’s take a look at some related subjects.
Difference Between Shocks And Struts
People often use these two terms interchangeably. They both perform the same function, but they are different in design, and are never used together.
A shock is a single removable part that mitigates bouncing. That’s about it. A strut, on the other hand, is more complex, as it is part of the suspension’s structure. It’s built right into the chassis, and has an impact on your steering, because it affects the angles of alignment. Of course, it too prevents the vehicle from bouncing.
How To Check Your Shocks or Struts
Whether your car has shocks, struts, or a combination of struts in the front and shocks in the back, you need to check them once in a while for flaws that could interfere with the performance of your suspension, and the overall handling of your vehicle.
Here are five things to check for:
- Do you see dents on the shock or strut?
- Are your rubber bushings cracking from dry rot or worn?
- Are the piston rods pitted, or dinged with little “pits”?
- Are the rubber bumpers crushed?
- Check your tires. Is there uneven wear or abnormal wear on them?
Of course, evidence can manifest itself in other ways. You may notice that it bounces more after a bump. It could also lean too much when you turn. A strut might give off a noticeable rattle or knock when worn.
If you detect any of these deficiencies in your shocks or struts, get your vehicle to a shop as soon as possible, and get them replaced.
Should I Drive With a Worn Shock or Strut?
On the one hand, if you want to get it home or to the shop, if you’re really careful, you could make it safely. However, you still would be doing so at your own risk.
On the other hand, if you’re trying to get to your vacation destination with the existing problem, you’re just asking for trouble. Most importantly, you’re risking injury or death to yourself or anyone else with you.
If you’ve been treating your shocks or struts as “not a big deal”, we hope this article has opened your eyes to help you avoid unnecessary risking serious damage to your vehicle. Most importantly, we hope it will help you always to keep safety first – for yourself and your passengers.