Shock Absorbers Working Principle:
The working of a shock absorber is less complex, it can be easily understood if we know
about the law of conservation of energy. This law state that energy cannot be created
or destroyed, it can only change forms.
So, let us learn about potential and kinetic energy in brief. Potential energy is stored
energy, and kinetic energy is energy in motion. A shock absorber uses this principle in
its working. For instance, when your car, hit any bump or dip in a road, your vehicle’s
suspension and springs move so that the tire can stay in contact with the road and
absorb the energy. In this case, the shock absorber dampens the movement of the
spring as it converts the spring’s kinetic energy into thermal (heat) energy. This thermal
energy then degenerates in hydraulic fluid.
A shock is an oil-filled cylinder, which allows the suspension to move, that’s a piston
moves up and down through the oil-filled cylinder. This up and down movement of the
piston forces small amounts of fluid through some tiny holes in the piston head.
Due to the fact that a small amount of fluid is forced out, the suspension’s movement
slows down. It dampens the compression and rebound the springs. The faster a shock
absorber’s springs move the more resistance the absorber offers. This makes the
system a velocity-sensitive.
How durable are Shock Absorbers?
Unfortunately, it is often the case that most of the shock absorbers available in the
market are relatively vulnerable to damages. This is especially true if the car’s
suspension system is often forced to work under extreme temperatures.
Yet, at this point of time, car owners may be asking how they are supposed to know if
their shock absorbers need to be replaced.
Well, the easiest way car owners can approach is to drive their car to the nearest
uneven roads that have lots of bumps or holes.
It is also important to keep in mind that even though oil leakage coming out of the
shock absorbers are obvious indicator for replacement, there is a tendency for some to
wear out even without the least amount of oil leakage.
Yet, it is also necessary for car owners to pay careful attention to any signs of dents
visible on the body of the shock absorbers, ragged bushes, tiny holes visible in piston
rod and also abnormal tyre conditions.
Advantages of a Shock Absorber:
Below are the benefits of shock absorber:
– it’s available in various shapes and different strengths and hardness, with
– Deformation of a shock absorber is relatively large as no matter in tension,
compression, shearing, and changing force.
– The natural frequency of the vibration isolation system is lower but has a higher
– Easy to maintain without sliding
– The modulus of elasticity in a shock absorber is much smaller than that of metal,
and large elastic deformation can occur.
– The shock absorption effect is good.
– Convenient installation and disassembly.
Disadvantages of a Shock Absorber:
Despite the great advantages of a shock absorber some limitations still occur. below are
the disadvantages of a shock absorber in a car:
– It has a low ability to resist environmental pollution and temperature change.
– Its life is short
– A shock absorber finds it difficult to achieve natural frequency below 5Hz
– Some types cannot be repaired but have to be replaced.
Symptoms of Bad and Failing Shock Absorber:
Below are symptoms or signs of a bad and failing shock absorber in a car:
– Vibrations while driving
– Swerving or nose-diving while braking
– Braking takes time to actuate
– Uneven tire wear
– Leaking fluid
– A cracked bushing at an attachment point.
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