Why It’s Important to Prime Shock & Struts Prior to Installation

When replacing shocks or struts it’s important that you prime them prior to installation. This is a vitally important step to help ensure these units provide optimal performance and long-term dependability of the suspension system.

Here’s a list of the key reasons why this initial procedure is important:

1. Removing Air

Shocks and struts are manufactured and designed to perform in a vertical position on the vehicle. However, they are usually stored horizontally which can create air bubbles internally. These air bubbles can compromise the performance of the shocks or struts by causing inconsistent damping, which can result in a bumpy and uncomfortable ride.

Priming the shocks and struts before installation involves compressing and extending them several times to expel any trapped air bubbles. This ensures that the shocks or struts are operating at their optimal performance level, providing smooth and consistent damping for a comfortable ride.

2. Prevent Premature Wear

Priming these units will ensure the internal seals and moving parts are properly lubricated. Proper lubrication reduces friction and wear on the internal components to help extend the service life of the shocks and struts.

3. Safety

Properly primed shocks and struts will provide consistent performance, which is crucial for maintaining OE vehicle stability during cornering, braking, as well as in emergency situations. The added stability and control help contribute to overall vehicle safety, ensuring predictable performance of the vehicle’s suspension system under various driving conditions.

4. Achieve Optimal Performance

Priming these units ensures the internal components are properly lubricated and adjusted prior to installation. This initial adjustment helps achieve a consistently smooth and damping force right from the beginning, leading to better handling and improved ride performance.

5. Warranty Compliance

Always make sure to follow the manufacturer’s recommendations, which most often includes priming the shocks and strut prior to installation. This will help ensure compliance with the manufacturer’s warranty terms. FCS shocks and struts are designed to perform optimally when properly primed, to match the intended engineering specifications.

How to Prime Shocks & Struts Before Installation*

  1. Position the Shock or Strut Vertically: Hold the unit in an upright position.
  2. Extend and Compress Piston Rod: Slowly extend and compress the shock or strut fully at least 3-5 cycles.
  3. Check to Ensure Smooth Operation: It’s important to make sure the motion is smooth and free of any resistance or noise, indicating that air bubbles have been removed.

*Not applicable for complete strut assemblies

Make sure to take time to properly prime shocks and struts prior to installation. This will ensure your vehicle’s suspension system will perform to the original specifications to provide a smooth, comfortable, and safe driving experience.