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How to Lubricate Shocks and Struts: Detailed Guide!

Last updated on February 1st, 2024

To lubricate the shocks and struts, jack up your car and remove the wheel for access. Take your lubricant and spray it on the bearings, turn plate, and bushings.

After it’s properly set, fill up a grease injector with grease. Apply it to the same parts. Repeat this process for every shock or strut.

That was just a glimpse of how to lubricate shocks and struts, but there’s much more to be discussed. So, stick with us till the end.

Lubricating Shocks and Struts: Step-by-Step Guide!!

If the shocks or struts start to squeak, you’ll need to lubricate them. Since shocks and struts are different components, their lubrication process is different.

Steps to Follow Before Lubrication

But before you start lubricating, there are some things to consider. So, make sure to:

  • First, jack up the car and remove the wheels to gain access to the suspension system.
  • Check for leaks in the suspension system. It may damage the suspension components along with the whole car body.
  • Lubricate your suspension bushing and piston rod using lubricant oil.
  • Check if any parts in your suspension system are old or worn out. For example, the springs or ball joints.
  • Clean the area around the shocks or struts with brake cleaner and a cloth. This will prevent future corrosion or damage.
  • Inflate your tires according to the correct measurement in your owner’s manual. Proper air pressure greatly affects the shock’s performance.

All of this is to make sure the other elements of your suspension are working perfectly. Now, you can start lubricating.

Strut Lubrication

Let’s start with how to lubricate squeaky struts. We’ve found silicon or lithium-based spray lubricants to work the best. Here is the list of tools you’ll need:

Now, follow this step-by-step guide:

Step 1: Jack up the Car

Raise your vehicle using jacks. Place the jack stands under your vehicle to support the weight, and lower the jack. There are four jacking points under the rocker panels of your car. 

Step 2: Remove the Wheel

In some vehicles, you’ll have to remove the wheels to access the struts. You can watch this video on how to remove the wheels:

How to Change a Wheel on a Car 

If the strut is already accessible, skip this step.

Step 3: Spray Lubricant

Now, take your lubricant and attach the long nozzle to it. Then, spray on the strut bearings, turn plate, and bushings. You’ll have to hold down the dust cover while spraying the bearings. Wait a few minutes, and spray again a few times.


Step 4: Apply Grease

Take the grease injector and fill it with grease. Now, inject the grease into the turn plate, strut bearings, and bushing. Make sure that the grease doesn’t leak out from around the injector nozzle. 

Source: Youtube

Again, use a long nozzle for any areas you can’t reach with a normal nozzle. Repeat the same process for every wheel.

With that, your struts have been lubricated.

Shock Lubrication

Now, how do you lubricate shocks in the car? To lubricate the shocks, you can follow the struts’ lubricating process, as they’re almost the same.

The only difference you might face is the dust cover. Struts have dust covers on them, which need to be held down for lubrication. But shocks don’t have this cover.

Also,  it’s best to use shock absorber oils like Waxpol to lubricate shocks.

When to Replace Shocks and Struts?

You should replace the shocks and struts of your car after every 50,000-100,000 miles on average. Depending on your driving, it may last longer or shorter.

But you can look out for these symptoms that indicate your car’s shock or struts need replacement:

  • When they’re worn out, it’ll be hard to control the vehicle.
  • Fluids will leak from the exterior of the shocks and struts.
  • The tire treads will also be uneven.

Shock Replacement

Just remove the bolts from the shock, and it’ll come out. Then, put in the new one and bolt it, maintaining the recommended torque. Be sure to match the shock with your vehicle’s specific model.

For a detailed guide, watch this video: How to Replace Shocks with basic hand tools

Strut Replacement

First, remove the brake line and bolts holding the strut. Jack up the suspension to remove the sway bar. Hammer out the knuckle and remove the upper bolts of the strut. Now, just take out the strut and replace it with a new one.

For the detailed process, watch this video: How to Replace Struts in your Car or Truck


Can I Spray WD40 on My Car Shocks?

Yes, you can use WD40 on car shocks. Regarding its silicon properties, using WD40 doesn’t cause any damage to your shock absorbers. Usually, you don’t need to remove the shocks for applying WD40. But, if there are serious lubrication problems, disassemble first. Also, avoid using excessive WD40.

Are Shocks Filled with Oil?

Yes, shocks are filled with hydraulic oil. They’re attached to a piston. During the bouncing movements, this piston moves within the hydraulic fluid. Thus, the pressure is greatly absorbed by the oil which reduces the impact. Always make sure that the shock is 90% filled with oil.

Can I use Engine Oil as Shock Oil?

No, engine oil shouldn’t be used as shock oil. That’s because it reacts to the temperature. In hotter temperatures, the engine oil gets thinner. While, in colder temperatures, the oil will get thicker. This will change the dampening factor. Thus, it’s best to use silicon oils which remain constant.

Bottom line!

I hope you learned everything about how to lubricate shocks and struts. Still, here’s one last tip. When changing your worn-out tires, replace the shocks as well. Thanks for staying with us till the end.



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