Shock & strut replacement

Had my tires rotated today at a popular chain tire store. They told me I had a leaking shock and said I should replace the shocks and struts and have an alignment for $668. When I got home looked at the shocks and did not see any evidence of leaking. Was expecting to see fluid on shock. Also wonder why I would have to replace the struts only 46,000 miles on truck. Do limited hauling, mostly light loads on paved roads.

You can do the bounce test and see. Also, was there unusual tire wear before the new tires went on? Newer shocks have slight seepage which is normal. I am not saying you don’t need shocks/struts, but this an easy money making pitch by most stores. I was told I need new struts for my '05 Camry 50K miles ago and am still doing fine with the original ones.

“Leaking shock” at a “chain store” typically refers to you and your wallet (not in that order). While it is possible that shocks or struts can go bad quickly under some conditions it is usually an effort to bolster the income of the garage. Do as Galant says and bounce each corner of the truck by hand. If it rebounds with no bouncing then they are fine. If you get one bounce then the strut or shock is on its way out. Two or more bounces mean you should probably replace it.

How are your tires wearing? Usually the first sign of worn struts or shocks is abnormal tire wire, typically “cupping” on the edges.

Along with both those^ very good thoughts, a truck especially will be all over the road with bad struts. If it passes @bloody_knuckle 's bounce’s test and you haven’t noticed any issues with drivability, you’re probably fine.

If you didn’t see any oil leaking from the struts, it means you went to a chain store that wasn’t experienced enough to squirt oil on the struts when you weren’t looking.

Given your low mileage and limited light loads on paved roads, I’d agree with the previous replies. Your struts are likely fine.

At least they didn’t pull the ‘Your car is dangerous to drive, if you leave it’s not our responsibility’ line, like one did years ago on my not-yet wife. Jerks.

Watch for puddles under each wheel where you park it. Also try and notice what happens when you hit a significant bump running down the road at 35 plus mph. If you feel a boogadie-boogadie (highly technical term) vibration (sometimes called junk-shake or wheel dribble) from any corner just after you hit the bump, maybe you need shocks and struts.

The bounce test isn’t as reliable as it was in the 70’s, car have much firmer springs and shocks these days.

Or maybe you need to stay away from chain stores that pay their mechanics on commission. As @JoeMario mentioned, they weren’t quick enough to squirt motor oil on the shock to “prove” it is leaking.

BTW, motor oil is thicker than shock oil.

Chain store mechanics work on commission. So they have a selfish incentive to sell as many parts as possible. And way too many times the parts are perfectly fine.

Many years ago I went to a new chain store that moved into the area for a front alignment. The “Mechanic” said I needed to replace the ball joints before they could do an alignment. I knew for a fact they were fine. And when I sold the truck some 200k miles later…the original ball joints were still fine.