SUSPENSION & STEERING | ELart - Auto Parts & Accessories Online Shop

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What is the car suspension?

Car suspension is a number of parts and assemblies that are serving as the connecting link between the car body and the road. Smooth running, precision control and braking depend on their condition. In this section, we will talk about the steering and suspension of a car - types of car suspensions, types of steering gear, how they work, basic malfunctions.

What is the purpose of the car suspension?

The elastic element softens the impact, which transmitted to the car body, and as a result, smoothness and comfort increase. The elastic element softens the impact transmitted to the body, and as a result, smoothness and comfort increase. Suspension springs are an elastic element in cars, but there are also springs.

However, it is not enough to soften the impact, you still need to dampen the oscillations that the elastic elements create, and this is done by the shock absorbers. Without the shock-absorber the car, having run into roughness, would swing vertically for a long time, worsening coupling of wheels with the road.

The suspension must also transmit forces from the wheels to the car body and counteract the lateral forces that occur when cornering.

This is what the suspension rods or springs do.

The main purpose of the suspension: it increases comfort (smoothness), stability in motion (the ability to resist skidding and overturning) and pass ability of the car. All these requirements are in conflict with each other, so manufacturers are forced to compromise. For example, too soft suspension impairs stability, and too stiff - reduces comfort and reduces the life of the nodes.

How to detect malfunctions in the car suspension?

First, it is necessary to be able to “hear” the sound of a suspension bracket and to distinguish abnormal sound from the usual sound. It is normal to hear dull sound when hitting the bumps. It is abnormal to hear sharp metallic sounds that occur in ball joints, supports or shock absorbers. If you hear that, do not hesitate to check your car at the car service.

With broke down or defective shock absorbers, the car body starts to sway on the bumps. You can determine the condition by clicking on any of the front corners of the body and abruptly releasing it. The body must return to its original position and stop immediately. At the car service they will be able to more precisely determine the condition of the shock absorbers at the diagnostic stand.

If possible, from time to time check the condition of the rubber covers, protect the hinges of the various levers and rods of the suspension and steering trapeze. Especially if there were strong blows or collisions with "steep" obstacles. When the covers are damaged, rapid wear and failure of these components is inevitable. For the check the car is placed on a pit or elevated on a lift.

In general, listen and hear your car, because much of your safety depends on this skill.

What is steering?

The coordinated work of all systems and parts of the car guarantees the safety of driving.

Steering is a group of auto parts that allows the driver to steer the car in the required direction. Its task is to transfer and increase the steering effort from the driver to the wheels.

For an accurate and quick turn the car, two main groups of nodes are responsible:

  •   –   steering rack. It can be mechanical, with a hydraulic or electric drive. The electric power amplifier can be located on the rail itself or in the steering column;
  •   –   steering gear.

Pros&Cons about steering racks:

  1. Pros:

    •   –   simple and compact design;
    •   –   frequent maintenance is not required;
    •   –   light weight;
    •   –   low price;
    •   –   good steering ability to return to its original position;
    •   –   it has good control accuracy.
  2. Cons:

    •   –   doesn't soften steering bumps on rough roads;
    •   –   it can mainly be used only in cars, not trucks or vans.

What is the steering gear?

The steering gear provides the rotation of the wheels during rotation of the steering wheel. It facilitates the rotation of the steering wheel and allows the driver to apply less effort.

Most often, two types of mechanisms are used:

  •   –   rack and pinion are using in cars. Consists of a stem and spool mechanism that work together. The advantage of the rack and pinion mechanism is its simple design, but it is sensitive to road surface flaws and vibrations.
  •   –   worm gear. This is a complex and expensive unit that requires high-quality, timely service and periodic adjustment. Despite this, it provides good maneuverability, is less sensitive to uneven roads, and has high efficiency.