Replace Shock Absorber yourself

Changing Shock Absorber yourself–manuals and video tutorials

Helpful guides and tips on replacing Shock Absorber
Make
Model
Car parts category
Changing Shock Absorber: video tutorials

Most viewed video tutorials on the installation of Shock Absorber

  • rear and front Shock Absorber replacement diy - online video
    How to change front shock absorbers on BMW 3 E90 TUTORIAL | AUTODOC
  • Installation Shock Absorber yourself video instruction on VW GOLF
    How to change a front shock absorber on VW GOLF 5 TUTORIAL | AUTODOC
  • How and when to replace Shock Absorber front FORD FIESTA V (JH_, JD_): video tutorial
    How to change rear shock absorbers on FORD FIESTA 5 TUTORIAL | AUTODOC
  • Remove rear online instructions
    How to change rear shock absorbers on MERCEDES-BENZ M W163 TUTORIAL | AUTODOC
  • Tips for changing Shock Absorber BMW
    How to change front shock absorbers on BMW 5 E60 TUTORIAL | AUTODOC
  • How to solve the problem with MERCEDES-BENZ front Shock Absorber: video guide
    How to change rear shock absorbers on MERCEDES-BENZ E W124 TUTORIAL | AUTODOC
  • rear and front Shock Absorber replacement diy - online video
    How to change rear shock absorbers on TOYOTA RAV4 TUTORIAL | AUTODOC
  • Installation Shock Absorber yourself video instruction on SUZUKI SWIFT
    How to change shock absorber on SUZUKI SWIFT 3 [TUTORIAL AUTODOC]
  • How and when to replace Shock Absorber front BMW 3 (E46): video tutorial
    How to change a rear shock absorbers BMW 3 E46 TUTORIAL | AUTODOC
  • Remove rear online instructions
    How to change front shock absorbers on VW SHARAN 7M TUTORIAL | AUTODOC
  • Tips for changing Shock Absorber VW
    How to change rear shock absorbers on VW PASSAT B5+ TUTORIAL | AUTODOC
  • How to solve the problem with MERCEDES-BENZ front Shock Absorber: video guide
    How to change rear shock absorbers MERCEDES-BENZ E W210 TUTORIAL | AUTODOC
  • How to change front shock absorbers VW PASSAT VARIANT B6 3C [TUTORIAL AUTODOC]
    How to change front shock absorbers VW PASSAT VARIANT B6 3C [TUTORIAL AUTODOC]
  • How to change front shock absorbers on RENAULT CLIO 2 TUTORIAL | AUTODOC
    How to change front shock absorbers on RENAULT CLIO 2 TUTORIAL | AUTODOC
  • How to change rear shock absorbers on VW PASSAT B6 TUTORIAL | AUTODOC
    How to change rear shock absorbers on VW PASSAT B6 TUTORIAL | AUTODOC
  • How to change front strut mount and shock absorbers HYUNDAI GETZ 1 TUTORIAL AUTODOC
    How to change front strut mount and shock absorbers HYUNDAI GETZ 1 TUTORIAL AUTODOC
Vehicle maintenance log book
Know what, when and how to repair, and manage your car expenses
Want to get more useful information?

Ask questions or share your repair experience on the car forum. Subscribe to updates so you don't miss out on new guides.

Install the AUTODOC CLUB app!
Your personal car expenses manager, maintenance tips, reminders about upcoming appointments and service intervals, DIY repair instructions – all this on your phone.
Google Play AUTODOC Club App
App Store AUTODOC Club App
Instructions for Shock Absorber change - QR-code scan
Scan

To download the app:

  • - scan the QR code
  • - download from App Store
  • - download from Google Play
DIY Shock Absorber troubleshooting guide
Advices on car maintenance
View more
  • Shock Absorber replacement and many more - free video tips
    How to flush engine during oil change | Tips from AUTODOC
  • Shock Absorber replacement tricks
    How to extend the life of your car tyres | AUTODOC
  • Shock Absorber Maintenance Hacks
    Types and features of run-flat tyres | AUTODOC
  • Shock Absorber service tips
    How to clean an engine bay | AUTODOC tips

Repair and replacement manuals

Frequently asked questions about replacing the shock absorbers

How do I tell if the shock absorbers are faulty?

This is indicated by changes in the car behaviour while driving. You’ll hear knocking and characteristic rattling sounds in the suspension, and the car body may sway from side to side, which is especially noticeable when driving on poor quality roads. The car handling is impaired, the braking distance increases, and the vehicle skids on corners. If you suspect a failure, the shock absorbers should be inspected. Often they get out of order due to loss of tightness, which is accompanied by streaks of oil on their surface. If you cannot see any leaks, take your car to a garage, as thorough diagnosing is only possible using special equipment.

It is dangerous to use a car with leaky shock absorbers, as oil and gas inside perform the dampening function. If the housing integrity is impaired, the component loses its operability. Please note that a small amount of oil condensation on the housing of the component does not mean it's defective: when the unit is working, oil settles on the rod, which is necessary for its seal lubrication. As a result, oil fog appears under the shock absorber dust boot, evenly covering the surface of the parts. Then condensation will accumulate on the housing as well.

Can a car with broken shock absorbers be used?

It is highly inadvisable to operate a car when these components are defective because this directly affects road safety. For example, when driving over bumps, a wheel with a bad shock absorber constantly loses contact with the road. Due to the shift in the centre of gravity, the car loses stability when cornering. The driving comfort is also reduced. The load on the components of the running gear increases by several times, which leads to their premature wear. Braking path increases, especially that of cars equipped with the anti-lock braking system. This system, as well as the stability control system, can operate with malfunctions. The hydroplaning effect occurs at speeds lower than usual.

Can I replace a shock absorber myself?

Using the tutorials from AUTODOC CLUB, you can handle the replacement of shock absorbers yourself. For this job, you will need wheel chocks, a jack, as well as a set of spanners, a metal brush to clean the assemblies of dirt, and penetrating oil to help loosen stuck fasteners. Look for detailed instructions for your exact car model in our video guides.

The shock absorbers are replaced as soon as they start malfunctioning. Some manufacturers recommend replacing the components after 80,000 kilometres, however, these parts are able to last even longer if used carefully and on quality roads.

What causes shock absorbers to fail?

The sealing elements of the product deteriorate, wear out and and crack over time, thus leading to loss of the component tightness. The rod corrodes under the influence of moisture and dirt. A broken dust boot contributes to the product wear, as the contact parts undergo abrasive wear when exposed to dirt. If the vehicle operates on poor-quality roads, the valve mechanisms inside the unit may deform under excessive loads. The components often fail due to mechanical damage. For example, the housing can easily deform when hit by a rock or other solid object, which is especially dangerous for monotube shock absorbers as this can cause the piston rod to jam.

Can shock absorbers be repaired?

No, the components can’t be repaired. They should be replaced if they malfunction. It usually takes from 1 to 5 hours to replace the components on one axle. After that, the wheels should be aligned.

Can I replace just one shock absorber?

No, products should be replaced in pairs on the axle. Characteristics of new and used parts differ, even if the latter operate properly. Therefore, replacement of only one component will result in an unbalanced suspension, which can lead to impaired handling and reduced driving safety. However, you don't have to replace shock absorbers both on the front and rear axles simultaneously unless the vehicle's suspension is being tuned.

Will new shock absorbers make a ride smoother?

Yes, as the car body will sway from side to side less when driving over bumps. The vehicle's stability will improve as well. Please note: the smooth ride of the car is affected both by the condition of the shock absorbers and by the degree of their stiffness. So if you install stiffer sports components instead of the standard ones, this may have a negative impact on driving comfort. The smooth ride mostly depends on the condition and stiffness of the coil springs. Thus, soft springs and shock absorbers should be installed to ensure maximum comfort and a smooth ride.