How Car Suspensions Work

Once you drive a car on a regular basis, then the suspension is not something to ignore. A vehicle’s suspension actually works to reduce and even prevent your vehicle from jerking when you drive on bad roads. It also helps to reduce issues such as back pain and other severe back injuries. The suspension is certainly a very important component in a vehicle, but unfortunately, many people overlook them. So, in this post, we will show exactly how a car suspension works as shock absorbers, as well as the different types available so you can have a better understanding of why it is so important.

As mentioned previously, the suspension works to reduce the force exerted on a vehicle while driving so that the interior of the vehicle is as still as possible. There are many things that can cause a vehicle to jerk such as potholes and even rocks. The suspension essentially cushions the vehicle whenever it drives on a rough patch of road, pothole, over a rock, a crack etc. It also makes driving much easier, more comfortable and we’ll now look at the other functionalities of this feature.

Job

The entire job of a car’s suspension is to ensure the cabin is always stable and comfortable. It also has to ensure that the vehicle is always on the ground and that you have full control over the vehicle and tires while driving. The mechanics of how a suspension does this is quite complicated and we will dive into this in a moment. However, it is essential to understand that the role of a vehicle’s suspension is to provide contact, comfort and control.

Comfort

To understand how suspensions provide comfort to drivers and passengers, you need to understand exactly how they work. This explanation will also show how it provides control and contact which are also very important functionalities of a vehicle’s suspension.

The Inner Workings

Basically, it works on the law of force dissipation. This is when a force is converted into heat so that the actual impact of the force is significantly reduced and even removed. The suspension does this through struts, springs and dampers. The spring is necessary for the energy to transfer and the damper then converts this energy into heat. Check below for the details on how this is done.

Energy Storage in the Spring

The spring in a vehicle’s suspension is extremely necessary since it stores energy that is generated when the vehicle encounters something on the road that would cause it to jerk. This spring compresses to store the energy and different springs can store different amounts of energy. Energy storage is determined by the coefficient of the spring, the material it is made out of as well as the length of the spring. There are particular spring materials that are capable of storing more energy however how long it lasts is dependent on the material since some materials are stronger and more durable than others.

There are two kinds of suspension springs and these are leaf springs and coil springs. The most common one is the coil spring. The leaf spring, meanwhile, can store a lot more energy than the coil spring and these are usually used in vehicles with solid axles such as trucks.