Are shocks and struts covered under warranty?

Know for certain if you’re covered or will have to pay out of pocket for these parts with a big price tag

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    Noticing your car swaying or bouncing while you drive? Are you starting to feel every bump in the road? Is it becoming hard to control your vehicle as you steer? Sounds like your shocks and struts have worn out and need to be replaced.

    Shocks and struts are crucial for having not only a safe vehicle as you drive, but also a smooth ride. If they’re no longer working, you’ll want to know if they’re covered under warranty.

    Read on to find out.


    Key insights

    The average repair cost for shocks and struts starts at $1,000.

    Jump to insight

    These parts are not usually covered in extended warranties since they’re wear-and-tear items.

    Jump to insight

    Your factory warranty might provide coverage.

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    Whenever you need to replace shocks and struts, it’s best to repair them all at once.

    Jump to insight

    Shock and strut warranty coverage

    Are shocks and struts covered under warranty? Sadly, no. Shocks and struts are considered to be standard wear-and-tear items, which extended auto warranties, known as vehicle service contracts, exclude from coverage. They are both part of a vehicle’s suspension system, connected to the tires to reduce bouncing while driving and ensure an even ride by keeping your tires in place. Over time, they begin to wear from old oil, damaged bushings or standard deterioration. The only time they’re ever covered is when the new car warranty is in place, which is typically the first three to five years of a new car’s life span.

    » LEARN: What does a car warranty cover?

    What types of warranties cover shocks and struts?

    Your best bet at having any shock and strut coverage is through your factory warranty. Most of the time, factory warranties will cover shocks and struts if these parts fail due to manufacturer issues. Every factory warranty coverage period is different, so make sure you fully understand the duration and exclusions of your coverage when you purchase your vehicle.

    Because shocks and struts are wear-and-tear items that generally fail over time, they’re not usually covered under extended auto warranties or vehicle service contracts.

    » MORE: Car warranty guide: what you need to know

    Does your extended warranty cover shocks and struts?

    Unfortunately, there are not many extended warranties that cover shocks and struts, since they’re considered wear-and-tear items. Most companies will have an “excluded components” or similar section that will list items that are excluded from coverage. It’s important to read this section carefully. Confirm with a representative which items are excluded.

    ConsumerAffairs reviewer Kevin from Mississippi had a positive experience with his warranty company, which did cover struts, when his car needed some work. “When I needed them for some help, they came through with everything. I had to do my airbags and struts. I was told they go out around 80,000 to 100,000 on my car. Endurance provided a tow truck and the place to get it fixed. Everything went A-1. They covered everything.”

    How much does it cost to fix your shocks and struts?

    There are several factors that contribute to the overall cost of fixing your shocks and struts. There are the parts and labor, and the type of car you drive is a big component.

    “Once you go into sports car/luxury car territory, that price skyrockets,” said Sean Kim, a mechanic. “Even aftermarket air suspension for Mercedes or Lexus can run $1,000 plus per corner just for the part, not including labor.”

    Though RepairPal says you’re looking at starting around $1,000 for shock or strut replacement, Kim says that might not be the case. According to Kim, paying $500 per corner is not out of the question.

    The parts themselves are going to be what drives the repair cost up the most, along with the brand of vehicle. After this, our average estimate of labor costs is about $270.

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    FAQ

    Are shock absorbers covered by warranty?

    Shock absorbers are not usually covered under extended warranties, since they are considered to be “wear-and-tear items.” Factory warranties generally cover unexpected repairs if these parts fail because of a manufacturing defect.

    What is the life expectancy of shocks and struts?

    On average, shocks and struts have the life span of five to 10 years, or 50,000 to 100,000 miles. However, there are conditions that can reduce this life expectancy, including road hazards and your driving style.

    Do I need to replace both shocks and struts?

    It is recommended that you replace both your shocks and struts at the same time. Doing so will help you maintain the parts equally, giving you better control of the vehicle and assisting with longer tire wear.


    Article sources
    ConsumerAffairs writers primarily rely on government data, industry experts and original research from other reputable publications to inform their work. Specific sources for this article include:
    1. Monroe, “What Causes Shocks & Struts to Wear Out?” Accessed April 26, 2024.
    2. RepairPal, “Suspension Shock or Strut Replacement Cost Estimate.” Accessed April 26, 2024.
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