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What does your car’s suspension do and what maintenance does it need?

mechanic checking car suspension

The average car is made up of hundreds of components that work together to provide you with a safe and smooth ride.

When major components experience unexpected problems, a vehicle service contract (also referred to as an extended car warranty) can help you pay for those repairs without costing you thousands.

One of the major components of your car is the suspension system. Here’s what it does and what you can do to keep it working great.

What is the car’s suspension?

Your car’s suspension is a system that absorbs the impact of road conditions. It protects the car and ensures comfort for the passengers inside.

It does this by increasing the friction between the tires and the road. 

When you drive, your car is bound to roll over road imperfections. Those bumps on the road interact with your wheels but the suspension stops it from affecting your car’s frame. Without your suspension, not only would the ride be uncomfortable, you would also lose grip on the road and your car’s wheels would be jumping up and down on the road’s surface all the time. 

Steering stability and good handling is all thanks to the suspension. 

Have you considered getting comprehensive breakdown coverage for your suspension? Here are some tips on how to buy extended car warranty coverage.

What parts make up the car’s suspension?

The suspension system is made up of several parts, but generally these are the main parts:


The springs are the connection between the wheels and car body. Therefore, they work primarily to make sure that the wheels always have contact with the road.

There are generally four types of springs used in today’s cars:

  1. Leaf spring
  2. Coil spring
  3. Torsion spring
  4. Rubber spring

Shocks (or in some cars, Struts)

The shocks are pump-like devices that absorb the energy (impact) of bumps and vibrations on the road. They convert kinetic energy (movement) into thermal energy (heat).

There are conventional shocks and adjustable shocks:

  • Conventional shocks
    • Monotube
    • Twin-tube
    • Coilover
  • Adjustable shocks
    • Active dampening
    • Electronic/Magnetic ride control
    • Air
    • Self-leveling

What are some signs that your suspension is failing?

You will usually be able to know that something is wrong with your suspension with these five signs:

  1. When you drive, you’re experiencing a bumpier-than-usual ride.
  1. When you hit a bump, your car continues bouncing.
  1. When you turn a corner, your car drifts or pulls to one side.
  1. When your car is parked, you see that one side of the car is lower than the other
  1. When you steer, you’re having to exert a lot of force.

How do you do maintenance on your car’s suspension?

Most modern suspension systems don’t require a lot of maintenance, but you should do a couple things every now and then to keep the suspension system in good condition.

  1. Check your tires’ inflation every 1,000 to 3,000 miles.
    • For the correct tire pressure, check your owner’s manual or the vehicle placard located in the door jamb on the driver’s side.
  1. Have a professional check your suspension system every year or 12,000 miles.
  1. Have all four wheels aligned every 2 years or 24,000 miles.
Infographic car suspension

Suspension repairs can be one of the most costly services

Many car owner manuals say that suspension systems last around 70,000 miles. Of course, this doesn’t mean that they can’t fail much sooner than that. Suspension system repair costs can vary from $1,000 to $5,000 in some cases.With low monthly subscription vehicle breakdown coverage, you can avoid paying for these expensive repairs out of pocket. has created vehicle breakdown coverage that is simple, trustworthy and affordable. Transforming the extended car warranty marketplace through technology and transparency, offers a full suite of worry-free, no-haggle car care plans through low-cost, 100% online, monthly subscriptions that drivers can sign up for in less than five minutes. Get an instant quote today!