Driving Advice: 3 bad driving habits you need to give up that damage steering & suspension systems
Even if you have been to the driving school and learned all the tricks of the trade, your driving style and habits develop over time. It is your responsibility as a driver, to adopt safe habits so that you can prolong the life of your car's steering and suspension systems.
Here are three common bad driving habits that you must avoid:
Speeding in the Corners
When you go through corners with a lot of speed, two main forces are acting on the car. The centrifugal force is pulling the vehicle away from the apex, and the centripetal force is pulling the vehicle inwards. The ability of your car to manage these two forces determines how well you can take the turn. If one force overpowers the other, your vehicle could be in serious trouble.
But what part do the suspension and steering components play in this tug-of-war? Well, the shocks absorb the load of these forces and enable you to turn comfortably. If you attempt to tackle a corner without shock absorbers, the vehicle will roll over or spin, even at low speeds. That’s why some cars have anti-roll bars or stiffer suspension setups to mitigate the effects of the two forces.
If you want your vehicle's suspension to last a lifetime, you should enter and exit the corners at a reasonable speed. Not only will the suspension last long, but you will avoid accidents.
Racing Over Speed Bumps
Speed bumps are used to slow down traffic before an important junction or crossing. They are designed in such a way that you always must reduce the vehicle’s speed or risk damaging the suspension components.
If you go over them at high speeds, the shock absorbers, the strut mounts, the axle, the tires, and the steering column all take a hit. You can even feel the aftereffects in the form of a misaligned steering wheel, cranky steering, and noisy shocks. The issues that arise after may not seem serious, but they can worsen over time and cost you a fortune to repair.
Turning the Steering All the Way
When you turn the steering all the way to the right or left and then accelerate, the torque from the engine puts a lot of stress on the steering and axle. It doesn't matter if you drive an RWD or an FWD, the effect is pretty much the same. It is advisable to accelerate slowly out of a turn, especially when the steering is turned over entirely to one side.
Signs That Steering and Suspension Systems are Worn Out
If you regularly do the things we talked about above, chances are that your car already requires a suspension overhaul. Look for one of the signs from the list below, and you will know when to visit a mechanic.
-Vibration in the steering wheel
-Loud noise when turning the wheel
-Pulling to One Side
-Too much movement/play in the steering wheel
When to Go for Service?
When you feel any of these indicators develop in your car, you should book an appointment with the nearest certified mechanic. You can save your car from a big disaster if you are quick.
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