Bumped Caddy Bumper



My ’76 Cadillac Eldorado was hit in the rear, and while the bumper wasn’t damaged, it compressed a fair amount. I need to know how to get the “shock absorbers” to extend back out. Can you help me?

Thompson Langley
Willmar, NC


The “shock absorbers” you’re describing were designed to minimize damage to the bumpers in minor collisions. It sounds like they’ve done their job!

Now that they’ve been compressed, they need to be replaced. You’ll have to chase down some replacement units now, and that may be challenging.

Most ’70s-era GM cars used similar bumper shock absorbers, so if you can find cars of the same vintage in salvage yards, you may be in luck. We’d recommend removing your original units for comparison before you buy replacements.

Mark Simpson
Managing Editor

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10 Responses to “Bumped Caddy Bumper”

  1. Mark Mason

    I think you can drill a small hole, 1/16th or 1/8th, and allow them to spring back. I've not done it myself.

  2. Alan Parnau

    I had that same problem with a VW Rabbit I once owned. I tied a strong rope around that side of the bumper and the other end around a tree. I pulled the car forward slowly and the "jerk" of the rope when it got tight pulled the shock absorber out. I had to do it two or three time to get it fully extended. May not have been a particularly elegant solution, but it worked.

  3. michael

    To Bumped Caddy Bumper. I have a 1974 Coupe DeVille and my bumper shocks were compressed. I removed them and put them in a vice. Drilled a hole to release pressure and fluid. Then was able to pull them out to their original length. I reattached with the bumper and they've been working for years. Just a thought in case you can't find a replacement and that is becoming the norm as time goes on.

  4. Mason Loh

    I believe they are call > Bumper Energy Absorber < if you looking to replace oem.but they were design to be a one time user as even if you were to pulled it back out , it will not absorbed the energy the next time it get hit. otherwise if you don't care about future bumper accidents then is okay. this is what I learn from body shops back in the 80's when I use to deliver body parts.

  5. Herb Storey

    Where can l buy America made gasoline sending unit?

  6. Steve

    If you pull on the bumper with a chain around a fixed object (light pole) it might pop back out . It worked for me on a 1991 Fleetwood. I have a 76 Eldorado also .. so I would try that fix first .

  7. John Anderman

    I have drilled a pair of holes one in the body and one in the shaft. The shaft got a stem from an air valve, the body hole got a grease zerk. The grease zerk was placed near the edge of the body. Pump in a lot of grease to help seal the body and air up the shaft. The shock should pop out. I refill the air and grease about once a year.

  8. Tony Waltzer

    You should be able to pull them back out. Chances are they are stuck due to dirt and rust build up. May have to get a little forceful but It should stay out. This happened on my 1977 Buick Regal, pulled it back out with a ratchet come-along.

  9. stan

    I agee that they should be replaced, but years ago I pushed the bumper in on my dads car, a gm with the same system, I gentle hooked a chain to the bumper and did pull it back into it's stock location, and I also read in a magazine years back that they, the cylinders, can be drilled to allow the gas to escape and pulled back into shape, although doing that would compromise what the cylinder is designed to do

  10. Roger Kaufman

    I have an 87 Buick Electra Estate and the bumper was hit and the shock compressed. I took a hammer and drove the shock out to the original length and you can't tell the car was hit.