Rick's Free Auto Repair Advice

Replace damaged bump stop on strut or shock

Bump stop on strut or shock

What is a shock/strut bump stop

A bump stop is a rubber or urethane molded device inserted onto a shock or strut piston to prevent metal-to-metal contact when a shock or strut is fully compressed when the vehicle “bottoms out.”

Why shocks and struts need a bump stop

In an extreme compression event where the spring is fully compressed, the shock or strut mount can hit the shock or strut body with high force, damaging the shock or strut. So the bump stop is a cushioning device to prevent that metal to metal contact.

In addition to damaging the shock or strut body, rapid full compression can also damage the internal shock or strut valves. The bump stops prevent that valve damage.

Where is the bump stop located?

You never really see the bump stop on a strut because it’s inside the dust boot at the top of the strut.

strut exploded diagram
Bump stops deteriorate over time

Because they’re made to absorb and cushion metal to metal impacts, bump stops can be damaged over time, especially if you drive with worn out springs that cause the vehicle to bottom out.

strut bump stop

deteriorated bump stop on strut

Deteriorated bump stop on strut

Can bump stops be replaced?

Bump stops are inexpensive and can be replaced. However, a worn bump

deteriorated bump stop on shock

Deteriorated bump stop on shock

stop is a symptom of a worn spring and strut/shock. So it doesn’t make much sense to replace the bump stop alone.

Replacing a bump stop requires the removal of the shock or strut from the vehicle. The strut must be fully disassembled in order to access the bump stop. At that point you’ve incurred the same amount of labor as it would take to replace the strut with a new unit. The same applies to replacing a bump stop on a shock.

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