If you lived down south, it might be different, but you live here by McCullom Lake where winters beat on the roads and the roads beat on your Shocks, struts and suspension. Now that spring is here, you might want to have that checked.

Here around McCullom Lake, winters are good for ice fishing, snowmobiling and sipping warm cocoa by the fire. They’re not good for your car’s shocks, struts and suspension. In fact, they’re down-right brutal on a car’s shocks, struts and suspension.

The ice, the snow, the temperatures that drop below zero – they all conspire to find every weakness in the pavement – asphalt or concrete. Then they go to work tearing the road apart bit by bit. Before you know it, that road in or around McCullom Lake has a pockmarked appearance with a pothole here and a pothole there, not that anyone is dancing about it.

In fact, the closest you’ll see to dancing about potholes is what your car will do when it goes through the potholes. In the process, your shocks, struts and suspension take a beating. Before you know it, something has to give: your shocks or struts, or maybe a part of your suspension.

Whatever gives way first, when you start to have problems with your shocks, struts or suspension, it’s the kind of problem that likes to share. If it starts with the shocks or struts, it shares with the suspension. If it starts with the suspension, it spreads to other parts of the suspension and/or the shocks and struts.

The lesson to be learned is not to wait long when you have problems with your shocks, struts or suspension. Repairing the problem quickly keeps the cost of repair down to a manageable level. Waiting until the problem has spread increases the cost of repair proportionally.

Of course, when you have problems with your shocks, struts or suspension, you’re also liable to have trouble driving. In other words, it becomes a safety issue.

The suspension is something you’ll want to have a qualified auto repair technician look at for you. He or she can check the shocks and struts while they’re at it. In fact, after a McCullom Lake winter, you’ll almost certainly need an alignment, too.

The shocks and struts, however, unlike the suspension, are something you can reasonably check yourself. Just stand by one corner of the vehicle and press down. Hold the fender or quarter panel down a minute then release suddenly. Now, observe the way the car comes back up.

If it jumps up and bounces, you probably need shocks or struts. If it returns smoothly to its original position and pretty much stops, your shocks and struts are probably good, yet.

The best time of year to check your shocks, struts and suspension, especially here in the McCullom Lake area, is in the spring. With winter passing, you car has pretty much taken the worst winter will throw at it. Check your shocks, struts and suspension now and you should have smooth sailing the rest of the year.