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Your steering and suspension systems work together to keep your tires on the pavement and your vehicle under control – until a power steering problem makes your steering wheel hard to move, or a suspension problem makes you whole vehicle hard to rein in.

If your vehicle bounces, sways, squeaks, or makes you work hard just to turn the steering wheel, request a diagnostic appointment. Our Midas Auto Service Experts® will conduct a thorough inspection of your steering, suspension, and other possible causes for your vehicle handling problems. We’ll take the time to explain your vehicle’s condition, and let you know which services are urgent (and which can wait). We discuss the best options for your budget and provide a written estimate before making any repairs.

Most drivers wonder about their vehicle’s suspension when the ride gets rough. But that bounce and squeak isn’t the only way a bad suspension can spoil your ride.

Does your car lean into turns a little a little too forcefully? Does the back of your vehicle drag when you accelerate? Does the front take a noticeable nosedive when you brake?

With a damaged suspension, it feels like you’ve lost a little bit of your control over your vehicle. Listen to that instinct – the lean, the drag, and the nosedive are warnings of heightened rollover risk and increased stop time.

Wheel Alignment – The suspension service that goes hand in hand with your tire maintenance routine.

How do you know if your suspension is damaged?

A bad suspension leaves visible signs if you know where to look, but the change in your vehicle’s handling will probably catch your attention first.

Signs of a damaged suspension that you can see and hear:

  • One corner of your vehicle sits lower than the others. Suspect a broken spring.
  • Your vehicle fails the “bounce test”: Lean your body weight on the front of your parked vehicle and then move away quickly. If the vehicle bounces more than twice, suspect a problem with your shocks and struts.
  • Your tire treads develop a specific, uneven wear pattern called “cupping.”
  • You see oil, grease, or obvious wear on your shocks or struts.
  • You hear squeaking, especially when turning or braking.

Here are several symptoms of a damaged suspension that you can feel as you drive:

  • Your ride feels rougher than usual.
  • Your car leans forward, backward, or toward one side as you brake.
  • Your vehicle pulls or drifts, especially around turns. The prime suspect: bad shock absorbers.
  • Your vehicle pulls or drifts while driving straight. The cause could be your suspension – or your steering, your tires, or your brakes. Rule out uneven tire pressure, then see a mechanic.

Here’s a tip that just may save you a trip to Midas. (We won’t take it personally.) Some signs of steering and suspension problems are really brake and tire problems in disguise. So, at the first sign of trouble, check your tire pressure and tread wear. Your suspension is designed to work with four correctly-inflated tires, ideally of the same age and tread life. If optimal tire pressure doesn’t fix the problem, make your diagnostic appointment.

Is it safe to drive a car with bad suspension?

Driving with a bad suspension is likely more dangerous than driving with a suspension in good shape. The suspension contributes to your vehicle’s road traction and resistance to centrifugal force when turning and braking. Depending on the suspension problem, you could face increased risk of rolling over, or find yourself unable to stop as quickly as you expect in an emergency.

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