Appropriate Vehicle Suspension Systems

Appropriate Vehicle Suspension Systems

Suspension plays a very important part of keeping your vehicle safe to drive. Without proper suspension, your vehicle will be at risk of unwanted body motion and excessive bouncing. Making the vehicle not only uncomfortable it could cause harm to your person as well by either jolting you around or being unstable to steer with proper control. 

So, let’s first get into some suspension basics and then more about what we have in our range of Tough Dog Suspension gear.

Suspension Basics

You may be wondering what exactly suspension does for your vehicle. Well, it does a great deal and can change significantly according to the vehicle’s purpose. Suspension gives you the possibility of driving safely by keeping your vehicle in contact with the surface you are driving on. Here is the purpose for your vehicle suspension: 

  • Maximize the friction between the tires and the road surface during acceleration, cruising, and braking
  • Provide steering stability with good handling
  • Comfort to the passengers

Essentially your suspension system absorbs the energy of the wheel to allow the body and frame to continue undisturbed. The three fundamental components of any suspension are:

Springs

  • A variety of springs are available such as leaf springs typically found on trucks or coil springs which are more typically seen in the 4X4 world.
  • Loosely sprung vehicles like luxury cars eat up all the bumps in the tarred road but are prone to brake dive (weight of the vehicle is transferred to the front wheels during braking which creates a downward force on the front of the vehicle) and acceleration squat (weight of the vehicle is transferred to the rear wheels during acceleration which creates a downward force on the back of the vehicle) as well as body sway or roll during cornering.
  • Tightly sprung vehicles like sports cars can be driven more aggressively as they minimize body motion though less forgiving on bumpy roads.
  • Springs absorb energy but have no part in the dissipation of energy so they are used in conjunction with dampers

Dampers

  • The most common being the shock absorber which converts the kinetic energy of suspension movement into heat energy that can be dissipated into hydraulic fluid
  • A strut is a shock absorber mounted inside a coil spring which gives structural support to the suspension system plus damper function. The MacPherson strut combines a shock absorber and a coil spring into a single unit. This provides a more compact and lighter suspension system commonly used for front-wheel drive vehicles.
  • a double-wishbone suspension is an independent suspension design using two (occasionally parallel) wishbone-shaped arms to locate the wheel. Each wishbone or arm has two mounting points to the chassis and one joint at the knuckle. This assists in minimizing roll and sway while providing a more consistent steering feel. 

Anti-roll Bars

  • A solid rod which expands the entire axle and joins each side of the suspension giving a moving vehicle more stability 

Where to find the best

Tough Dog Suspension offers a range of kits best suited to your vehicle. Follow the links below for more information: