Back in the ’70s and into the ’80s, you couldn’t open a newspaper without seeing an ad for having your car’s shock absorbers replaced. (A “newspaper” was what we called the internet back in those days.)

Today, you’re not as likely to see those ads, in a newspaper or on line. But your car still has shocks and they still need replacement once in a while. But they don’t tend to fail as quickly, and they’re not as easy to replace as they once were.

The shock absorbers in today’s cars are part of something called a MacPherson strut: basically your car’s entire suspension system built into a single component. The MacPherson strut eliminates the need for many of the individual components that were a familiar part of your car’s suspension. MacPherson struts are also more dependable and keep the suspension running straighter without needing repair. That’s why most cars no longer need the wheels aligned so often; they tend to remain within specifications longer.

But deep inside the MacPherson strut is a cartridge, and that cartridge is your car’s shock absorber. And just like those shock absorbers of old, they provide the dampening necessary to keep your car from bouncing and make your tires hold the road, no matter how bumpy the road surface gets. And, even though they’re more dependable than those old shock absorbers, the cartridges do eventually wear out. That can cause tire wear and, if they get bad enough, make it difficult to drive the car safely.

The technicians at your local Cottman Transmission and Total Car Care center are very familiar with MacPherson strut technology. They can check your car’s struts, and, if the struts are worn out, they can suggest the best course of action to repair them and get your car’s suspension back to like-new condition.

If you’ve noticed any bumps on the tire or are having trouble controlling your car over rough roads, give them a call; they’ll be happy to check your car and help get you back on the road quickly.