Get to Know Your Lexus Shock Absorber and Strut Assembly
FAQs—Lexus Shock Absorber and Strut Assembly
What's the difference between Lexus struts and shock absorbers?
In terms of design, they're quite different even though they share the same goals and even functions. They both exist to decrease excessive spring motion. The struts assembly, however, is a structural component of your suspension system.
Meanwhile, your shocks are more about shock dampening and absorption at localized areas of your suspension to make for a smoother ride so that it could decrease extreme suspension spring oscillation. Both of these car parts are responsible for improving your control over your Lexus vehicle, making it safer, smoother, and more stable. A shock cannot be replaced by a strut and vice-versa.
Will aftermarket shocks and struts work on my newer Lexus SUV?
Quite a lot of aftermarket shocks and struts will work with the standard suspension of newer models of Lexus without the need for modification. A self-leveling suspension, however, might require rear spring replacement in order to accept aftermarket struts and shocks properly. You can only use stock or OEM (Original Equipment Manufacturer) Lexus shocks and struts for Lexus vehicles that utilize air suspension.
There are no ifs or buts in regards to that. Take note that if your main shock has a 2.5-inch diameter, then you have a standard suspension. If it's instead 3.25 inches, that's a self-leveling suspension. Check your user manual to know if your Lexus has air suspension or not.
How do I know my shocks and struts for my Lexus require replacement?
You should go to your Lexus dealer and have their ASE-certified technicians inspect your shock absorbers and strut assemblies regularly whenever your Lexus vehicle is brought in for tire, brake, and alignment services. If there are unusual noises from your suspension system and excessive oscillation from its springs, then the technician is there to confirm or not whether it's a major problem requiring shocks and struts replacement.
These mechanics can usually detect these issues during road tests and from seeing the state of the shocks and struts from up close. A professional is what you need in order to interpret every post-brake bounce, sway, or dive from your vehicle as actual symptoms of damage or not.
Should I have my shocks or struts replaced if there's a light film on them?
Just because there's a light film on your shocks and struts it doesn't necessarily mean they require replacement from the get-go. As long as they're working properly, there's no need for hasty replacement decisions. A light baste of oil on your shock absorbers and strut assembly is usually the result of oil lubrication on the rod as it cycles to and fro of the working chamber.
As the oil is wiped off of the rod, it travels to your shock or strut. If the oil leakage is excessive and not just a film of oil, it could be an indicator of a damaged seal requiring immediate replacement.
I've replaced my shocks and struts assembly several times monthly because of excessive oil leakage. Why are they failing so much?
Excessive oil leakage is primarily the result of seal damage. Before replacing your struts and shocks (to be honest, before replacing any failing car part) you and your mechanic should investigate the reason why the components failed in the first place. You'll spare yourself so much money and wasted time by getting to the root of the problem and solving it so that your replacement shocks and struts won't suffer the same fate as their predecessors.