Once you've determined your shocks are worn out, the first thing you have to ask yourself is whether to buy OEM or aftermarket replacement shocks . Which option is better for your Ford? Does it even matter?
Yes, it matters a lot. The shocks on your car are very important in maintaining ride quality and ensuring that the steering, handling, and braking performance stays optimal at all times.
Image Credit: AJ Pierce
You want to get replacement shocks that are:
- Built with quality materials
- Covered under warranty
- Designed specifically for your Ford model
OEM shocks fit the bill on all counts. Aftermarket shocks? Not really. Some aftermarket shocks don’t even meet any of the criteria listed above.
Why OEM is the Much Better Option
Here's why we always recommend OEM shocks above aftermarket ones:
OEM shocks are built with high-quality materials and good workmanship. Ford values the quality of its OEM parts, and it really shows. OEM Ford parts, including shocks, last a long time partially because they're made with premium materials and top notch craftsmanship.
You can't say the same about aftermarket shocks. Aftermarket manufacturers are able to offer low prices for their parts because they tend to cheap out on materials and labor. As a result, aftermarket shocks are not built well. For example, many aftermarket shocks aren't well sealed, meaning they'll start leaking oil sooner or later. They're also more prone to blowing out after hitting a hard bump.
2. Reliable Performance
Ford has a huge line of OEM shocks, each one designed and tuned for a certain Ford model. This is important because shocks will only work well if they're tuned to your vehicle's weight and springs.
Even when functioning as they should, aftermarket shocks typically don't perform well. It's because they're not tuned specifically for your car. Many aftermarket shocks are built with a one-size-fits-all approach because it's much cheaper than designing and tuning multiple shocks to fit certain models. That can really affect the shocks' performance on the road. For example, a one-size-fits-all set of shocks that are designed with sedans in mind wouldn't perform well on a SUV. The shocks wouldn't be firm enough to handle the extra weight.
OEM shocks typically last about 5 or 6 years, while aftermarket shocks last about 2-3 years due to quality and performance issues. That means you would be about halfway through your third set of aftermarket shocks when it's time to replace your first set of OEM shocks.
It's not only a pain to replace shocks so frequently, but it's also quite expensive. Since aftermarket shocks rarely come with a warranty, you would need to buy a whole new set of shocks every time your aftermarket shocks quit working. The costs add up pretty quickly. That's why OEM shocks are a great investment. They may cost a bit more than aftermarket shocks upfront, but they're definitely cheaper in the long run.
Finding Affordable OEM Ford Shocks
Often times, Ford owners settle for aftermarket shocks because they’re cheaper than OEM shocks. It’s understandable because OEM Ford shocks can cost a pretty penny, especially at dealerships. It’s only because dealerships mark up their prices by about 30%.
The good news is that it’s possible to find a great deal on OEM Ford shocks online. At FordPartsOnSale.com, we offer wholesale prices for genuine OEM Ford parts, including shocks. Look up your Ford model in our catalog of shocks or struts to see how much money you can save!