Torque shop

After a recent routine service, my workshop informed me that my car's front left suspension was "leaking" and I would have to replace it. The service supervisor recommended that I replace all four.

What does it mean when the suspension is leaking and why do I have to replace all four?

The term "suspension" refers to several parts, including rubber bushes, link arms, springs and dampers.

The only component that can leak is the damper because it contains oil and, in many cars, oil and gas.

Because of wear and tear, the oil or gas could leak. When this happens, the car will bounce on its springs every time it rides over bumps.

Dampers - which many refer to as shock absorbers - are critical to stability and comfort.

It is advisable to change in pairs (front two or rear two), but remember that dampers are wear-and-tear items, so if your car is more than five years old or has clocked more than 80,000km, it might be a good idea to change all four.

Shreejit Changaroth

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on December 05, 2015, with the headline 'TorqueShop'. Print Edition | Subscribe