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What Happens if a Strut Breaks while Driving?

Last updated on February 1st, 2024

If you’re driving down the highway and suddenly hear a loud clunk from underneath your car, it could mean that one of your struts has broken.

Struts are essential components of your vehicle’s suspension system, and when they break, they can inflict a lot of damage to your car and put you in harm’s way.

If this happens while you’re driving, it’s essential to remain calm and observe the right protocols in order to ensure your safety and that of other drivers.

This article will discuss what happens if a strut breaks while driving, the potential dangers it may cause, and the best way to handle this situation.

What Are Struts, and What Do They Do?

The struts are one of the four major parts of a car’s suspension system, with the other three being the springs, shocks, and control arms.

A strut is a cylindrical, metal piece that connects the wheel to the car’s chassis. It helps absorb the impact of driving on rough roads and keeps the wheel from bouncing up and down.

This, in turn, helps maintain control of the wheel’s motion and prevents damage to the rest of the car.

Struts play an important role in ensuring a smooth ride for drivers, especially those who travel on rough roads or drive off-road.

Without struts, wheels would constantly bounce up and down, causing damage to them and the rest of the vehicle. Struts also help keep the car’s ride smooth, which is especially important for those who drive long distances.

What happens if a Strut Breaks while Driving?

Haven knows the importance and functionality of the struts in your vehicle, now we will show you what it’s like if these components get broken.

Excessive Shaking

If a shock absorber is damaged, your car will bounce around and engage in excessive rolling, squatting, and diving. To put it another way, it won’t be cozy.

Controlling your car will be more difficult, especially at high speeds.

Low Driving Control

A broken strut can cause extensive damage to your car, as well as pose a danger to you and other drivers on the road. When a strut breaks, the wheel can become dislodged, which can then lead to a blowout. This is a dangerous situation that can cause you to lose control of your car.

Even while driving down the highway when a strut breaks, this can lead to a major accident.

Risk of Accident

It’s crucial to be vigilant and stay alert while driving after a strut break. If you’re alone when the strut breaks, you could face additional problems.

For instance, the wheel might come off the car and get stuck in the pavement, which can cause damage to your vehicle and other cars or property.

You can also get stuck in the pavement if the wheel gets caught around your tires, which can be very dangerous.

Potential Dangers of a Broken Strut


If a wheel loses its support because of a broken strut, it could come out of its position and hit the ground. This could cause the tire to blow out and lose air, making it impossible to drive.

Getting stuck

Your brake shoe could get caught in the ground, which would cause you to stop in the middle of the road. You could also get stuck in the middle of the road because of damage to your tire.

Life Threatening

If you don’t stop your vehicle after your strut breaks, you could hit another driver, causing you to get into an accident and suffer serious injuries.

You could also hit something like a telephone pole or a tree, which can get you severely injured.

How to handle a Broken Strut while Driving

While driving down the road and a strut breaks, the first thing you should do is apply your brakes. This will slow your car down and give you time to think of a plan.

You should also avoid any sudden movements that could cause the car to swerve, like slamming on the gas pedal or hitting the brakes hard.

Even though you’re in control of the car, it’s important to remember that you can’t stop it on a dime. Your best bet is to reduce your speed, stay calm, and carefully find a safe place to pull over.

If you’re on a highway, look for a safe place to slow down and pull off the road. Maintain a safe gap between you and the car ahead so you have time to brake if necessary.

What to do after a Strut Breaks

When a strut breaks while driving, it’s essential to stay calm and slow down. After you’ve come to a complete stop, you ought to pull over to a safe place and figure out what caused the strut to break.

It’s best to get off at the nearest exit and find a safe place to park your car, especially when you’re on the highway.

Suppose you don’t have a spare tire; you can call a towing company to take you to the nearest repair shop. Driving with a broken strut could cause you to get into an accident, you shouldn’t attempt it at all.

How to Prevent a Broken Strut

You can prevent broken struts by regularly inspecting your car’s suspension system and ensuring there are no worn parts. 

You should inspect your car’s suspension system at least once every year, and if you notice any signs of wear, you should have the parts replaced as soon as possible. 

You can also prevent broken struts by driving carefully. If you often drive on rough roads or off-road, you should ensure your car’s suspension system is in top shape.

Final thoughts

There are many ways your strut can get damaged while driving, the most common being bad roads or high-speed curbs. 

Vehicles can develop faults at any time especially when they aren’t taken care of properly.

Always remember to drive with care. Change your strut immediately if it gets damaged. You can use many tools to change your strut, but one of the most popular and effective tools is the strut jack.

As a vehicle owner, you should know the importance of having your vehicle’s struts in the right condition. Also, check out our article on how to tell if a strut is bad for more info on struts.



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