Gas charged lift supports are energy storage devices that create energy by compressing gas inside a cylinder. When closed, the energy is stored. When opened the energy is released to raise a hatch, hood, liftgate or trunk, holding them safely in an open position. Gas charged lift supports are sometimes incorrectly thought of as shock absorbers or struts, which instead absorb energy to control motion. Lift supports normally store a gas charge of 1,500 psi, therefore, they cannot typically be compressed by hand.
By design, all gas charged lift supports begin to fail over time. They are typically out of sight and out of mind…until they no longer function properly. Furthermore, they may work reasonably well one day and then not at all the next. The most common causes of failure include loss of gas pressure due to natural permeation, exposure to extreme temperatures and frequent use or cycling of the part. Replacement can also be expected if the vehicle is of five years of age or older. Lift Support usage can be broken into two categories: Automotive specific applications and Universal applications.