How Much Do Shocks and Struts Cost?

Written by: Staff
Last Updated:  August 8, 2018

The vehicle shocks and struts are two different parts but work together to ensure a stable ride.  If you feel the car handles poorly and you can feel the impact of the road becomes more noticeable, then it may be time to change the shocks and struts.  Pep Boys says by the time your car has driven 50,000 miles, your shocks and struts have cycled more than 85 million times, causing quite a bit of wear and tear.

To put it in simple terms:  The struts are responsible for supporting the vehicle which allows it to conform to the roads, while the shocks are mostly responsible for absorbing the impact due to the roughness of the road, making them an essential part to your car’s suspension system.  If your car was built after 1995, then there’s a good chance you will have shock absorbers in both the rear and front assemblies.

10 by Justin Capolongo, on Flickr
10” (CC BY 2.0) by Justin Capolongo

How much does strut replacement cost?

On average, shock and struts replacement can be anywhere from $100 to as much as $300 for the parts alone.  This will not include the cost of professional labor.  This will depend on the brand of the part, your vehicle’s make and model, and the retailer you’re purchasing from.

For those who want to have the shock and struts job performed at a local repair shop, the cost for this type of repair can range anywhere from $400 to as much as $1,500 to have all the shocks and struts replaced.  This will be based on the factors mentioned earlier. If you were only to need front or the back, then it’s safe to cut this estimate in half.

According to our research, we had called a few popular franchised mechanics to see what they charged.  Pep Boys, for instance, said the costs could widely vary depending on the factors we already mentioned, ranging anywhere from $200 to more than $1,000. Midas said the same thing and estimated anywhere between $200 to $900.

On, they list the average prices of quotes other vehicle owners received.  According to their estimates, owners were charged anywhere from $178 to more than $700 for the front strut/shocks only.  Glancing at the table, it seemed as if the higher end car brands such as Porsche and Jaguar were more than $600.

Strut replacement overview

Prior to having the shocks and struts being replaced, the mechanic, as we discuss below, will first want to confirm this is, indeed, the problem.  He or she will fully inspect the steering wheel setup, suspension and alignment to see if any repairs need to be made in these areas.

To change the struts, the mechanic will first lift the car with the hoist to access the under body of the car.  Next, depending on which shock/struct is replaced, the wheel will be removed and the brake caliper and rotor and the sway bar will be disconnected to gain access to the strut.  Lastly, the strut will be disconnected from the steering knuckle and strut tower to fully remove it from the vehicle.  Next, depending on the installation job, the entire strut will be replaced or the mechanic may part out the strut, effectively taking out the parts that are worn.

What are the extra costs?

To confirm the shocks and struts need to be replaced, mechanics will often want to perform a thorough evaluation.  This evaluation will often cost anywhere from $25 to $55, depending on the mechanic, but if you were to use the mechanic for the repair, then there’s a good chance they will apply this fee to your repair.

Tips to know:

If your car has more than 50,000 miles and you haven’t replaced the struts yet, then it may be a good idea to bring your car in for an in-depth checkup to make sure all of your parts are in working order.  Replacing them early enough can ensure a smoother ride and it can actually help allow other parts to last longer since the undercarriage will no longer shake due to the poor parts.

When replacing, it will really depend on the vehicle’s make, model and driving conditions.  It’s best to always refer to the owner’s manual for specific service recommendations.

Symptoms of bad shocks and struts may include excessive bouncing, swaying while turning corners, a stiff ride, poor steering response or an unstable feeling while traveling at higher speeds.  Visual observations, according to Firestone Auto Care, may include unevenly worn tires, fluid leaks, a dented shock or strut body, or corroded bushings or mounts.

How can I save money?

Most mechanics will always recommend replacing both struts at once since this is often the most cost-effective option.  If the front or back were to go bad, then there’s a good chance the next one will go bad shortly after.  Also, if one strut/shock is new and the other is older, there can still be a difference felt while driving.

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Average Reported Cost: $825

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Less Expensive $1 $1.5K $3K $5K $6.5K More Expensive $8k

How much did you spend?

Was it worth it?  

  1. jer paid $800 and said:

    4 struts

    Was it worth it? Yes

  2. Kevin (Arlington,  Texas) paid $850 and said:

    Two front struts

    Was it worth it? Yes

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