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Old 10-25-2011, 03:49 PM   #1
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How to tell if your struts or springs are bad or need replaced

Is there any way to tell when you need to replace either of these?
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Old 10-25-2011, 10:27 PM   #2
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Re: How to tell if your struts or springs are bad or need replaced

bumb before i go to bed
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Old 10-26-2011, 06:03 AM   #3
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Re: How to tell if your struts or springs are bad or need replaced

Bump for the morning
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Old 10-26-2011, 06:29 AM   #4
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Re: How to tell if your struts or springs are bad or need replaced

Bad shocks:
leaking oil
whacked out mounts
bounce test
floaty ride
watch the tire bounce over a bump from riding in another car

Bad springs:
ride height
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Old 10-26-2011, 07:55 AM   #5
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Re: How to tell if your struts or springs are bad or need replaced

Bad shocks/struts: you haven't replaced them yet

Bad springs: you haven't replaced them yet

Cure: replace them
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Old 10-26-2011, 04:27 PM   #6
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Re: How to tell if your struts or springs are bad or need replaced

Quote:
Originally Posted by sofakingdom View Post
Bad shocks/struts: you haven't replaced them yet

Bad springs: you haven't replaced them yet

Cure: replace them
Would they make any noise? Like when I get in my car it makes a noise like either the spring or shock isnt moving smoothly while going down and while driving it does the same, it's just pretty much on my driver side
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Old 10-26-2011, 04:48 PM   #7
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Re: How to tell if your struts or springs are bad or need replaced

Quote:
Originally Posted by evilemokid94 View Post
Would they make any noise? Like when I get in my car it makes a noise like either the spring or shock isnt moving smoothly while going down and while driving it does the same, it's just pretty much on my driver side
Probably yes. They creak and squeak and if you bounce the car it probably won't bounce smoothly or hardly at all. Plus the ride will be "floaty" or very harsh. ie not smooth. etc. If they don't feel right replace them. It sounds like you already know the answer.
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Old 10-26-2011, 04:52 PM   #8
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Re: How to tell if your struts or springs are bad or need replaced

They Creak when I get in or when I hit a bumb or something and when I push down I get the same noise and some resistance
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Old 10-26-2011, 04:54 PM   #9
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Re: How to tell if your struts or springs are bad or need replaced

What do you mean by floaty?
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Old 10-26-2011, 06:00 PM   #10
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Re: How to tell if your struts or springs are bad or need replaced

your front strut sounds bad for sure. but you should replace them all due to age and like sofakingdom said, doubt they have ever been changed anyway.
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Old 10-26-2011, 06:10 PM   #11
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Re: How to tell if your struts or springs are bad or need replaced

Quote:
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What do you mean by floaty?
Feels like the car is not well connected to the road. It wanders, pitches and rolls sort of like a boat. Some big old cars with soft suspension felt like that. Your car definitely shouldn't. It should feel smooth and like it'll go where you point it. You'll know the difference when you feel it.
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Old 10-26-2011, 06:42 PM   #12
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Re: How to tell if your struts or springs are bad or need replaced

Okay, are they hard to replace? And how are kyb gr2? I might just do the front for now and the rear in the spring
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Old 10-26-2011, 07:42 PM   #13
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Re: How to tell if your struts or springs are bad or need replaced

theyr not too bad. 3 bolts on strut tower, 2 bolts on knuckle, i believe 1 bolt holding the brake hose. then off to the alignment rack you go
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Old 10-26-2011, 08:41 PM   #14
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Re: How to tell if your struts or springs are bad or need replaced

That easy? And cool. I might do my tie rod ends while in at it then. Will I be okay doing just the front for now?
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Old 10-27-2011, 07:30 AM   #15
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Re: How to tell if your struts or springs are bad or need replaced

as far a bolts, yes that easy. not say you wont fight with it some here and there, but penetrating oil helps alot, especially on the knuckle bolts. i obviously dont have your car sitting right here in front of me to tell u if you need this or that. but your front struts are a little more paramount than the rears. also more money. but when u do get spare money, knock out the rears.
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Old 10-27-2011, 05:57 PM   #16
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Re: How to tell if your struts or springs are bad or need replaced

I will, when I do the front, do I just take the bolt out under the cap of the strut mount? Or do I have to take the whole thing? Also where are some good places to get the gr2s? Most I'm seeing on eBay are for all four for $146 but the fronts Re just $101 so I may get both now
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Old 10-27-2011, 07:02 PM   #17
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Re: How to tell if your struts or springs are bad or need replaced

I'd suggest doing the rears first. Shocks & springs both.

Cheeeeeeeeeeeeper and eeeeeeeeeeezier by far. Takes longer to jack the car up than it does to change the parts.

Then if you like the results, use your acquired accumulated wisdom and experience to help the front job not be as much trouble.
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Old 10-27-2011, 07:34 PM   #18
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Re: How to tell if your struts or springs are bad or need replaced

Front is not much harder than the rear.

Just remember to toss a chain and bolt around the spring so it doesn't fly out and rip you a new one.
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Old 10-27-2011, 07:51 PM   #19
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Re: How to tell if your struts or springs are bad or need replaced

if your doing springs too, the fronts can be kind of a PITA. if your putting lowering springs in place, that helps alot. i got lucky and was able to slip the new springs in without compressing them. the rears springs are cake. pretty much unbolt the shock bolts at the bottoms and jack up the body of the car and let rear end just drop, and the rear springs usually just "fall" out lol.
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Old 10-28-2011, 07:05 AM   #20
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Re: How to tell if your struts or springs are bad or need replaced

Exactly... front springs are not a trivial matter at all... but the rears are beyond easy. Like I said, it takes longer to jack the car up and let it back down than it does to change the rear springs & shocks, even taking into account the 30 seconds or so that it takes to remove and reinstall the back seat; and like the other fellow said, when you take the shocks loose, the springs literally FALL out. Zero labor basically. Worst thing you have to watch out for is putting too much stress on the rubber brake hose.

Fronts, not so much. Struts aren't too bad but changing the springs is a good bit more invasive.
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Old 10-28-2011, 01:18 PM   #21
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Re: How to tell if your struts or springs are bad or need replaced

Dumb question for you before you start tearing into all of it, when was the last time you greased any of the front end? I had a lower ball joint that was replace when I got new tires, and they didn't grease it when it was installed. It didn't take long for it to start doing what you described. Crawl under the car, and grease all the ends, and see if that makes any difference.
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Old 10-28-2011, 02:48 PM   #22
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Re: How to tell if your struts or springs are bad or need replaced

Last time I greased them? Um maybe 3 weeks ago. I put 4 squirts in each nipple
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Old 11-03-2011, 07:04 PM   #23
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Re: How to tell if your struts or springs are bad or need replaced

Okay I'm confused, i was telling my dad I was about to order my new shocks and struts from rockauto an he sId he wanted to check them first before I did. So he went around and bounced the driver side and passenger sides and they depressed from him applying pressed and as soon a he let go it came up and stopped, but they're the original shocks and struts so I'm confused. Also while I was under my car today checking my ujoints I noised my passenger rear spring is bright blue with little dirt on it and my driver was all dirty and rusty so I'm wondering what happend to make them replace just one
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Old 11-04-2011, 06:20 AM   #24
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Re: How to tell if your struts or springs are bad or need replaced

If the shocks & struts are original, they're garbage. PERIOD. Replace them.

Same for the springs. They're CHEEEEEEEP and EEEEEEEEEZIE. (Rear, anyway...) Replace them.

Just do it. You won't BELIEVE the difference it makes. You'll kick yourself for being such an idiot and not doing something SO CHEEEEEEP and SO EEEEEEEZIE alot sooner.

Then once you get the rears done, it will be OBVIOUS to you and your dad and anybody else that can get a before/after experience, that no further "testing" or "convincing" will be required.

JUST DO IT.
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Old 11-04-2011, 06:24 AM   #25
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Re: How to tell if your struts or springs are bad or need replaced

I'm gonna do them in the spring, shocks, struts, and springs. I'm ordering my rear shocks today along with 4 new tierod ends and adjusters. Later this month when it's my birthday I'm gonna get my struts and new weatherstripping, the. After Christmas I'm gonna get new springs for the front and rear so when spring gets here I'm gonna do a suspension overhaul. Btw my shocks and struts are monroes and my springs will probably be moog. Those ok?
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Old 11-04-2011, 07:20 AM   #26
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Re: How to tell if your struts or springs are bad or need replaced

The best time to buy suspension upgrades is December. Just about all of the vendors have great specials going on. I bought these items for my 85 Z last Dec. It made a huge difference! "Tight as a Tick". Click on my Signature for more information.
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Old 11-04-2011, 08:37 AM   #27
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Re: How to tell if your struts or springs are bad or need replaced

+1 for holliday sales
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Old 11-04-2011, 03:00 PM   #28
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Re: How to tell if your struts or springs are bad or need replaced

I'm buying from rockauto lol. They don't do sales
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Old 11-06-2011, 07:21 PM   #29
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Re: How to tell if your struts or springs are bad or need replaced

i traced my squeeking to the sway bar bushings.
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Old 11-06-2011, 10:22 PM   #30
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Re: How to tell if your struts or springs are bad or need replaced

Not to jump in on your thread, but I have a question. My shocks and struts are original also, had them checked out and they said they were good. still have the stickers and paper on them from factory. I have a 89 RS with 54,000 should i change mine also? I just noticed a little floating feeling recently.
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Old 11-07-2011, 06:07 AM   #31
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Re: How to tell if your struts or springs are bad or need replaced

I removed all of my original suspension stuff, boxed and labeled it, put it in storage. Wherever the Z ends up, this stuff goes with it. New Bilstein shocks and struts will make a big difference on your low mileage car.
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Old 11-07-2011, 06:11 AM   #32
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Car: 85 Z28 T-Top 36mm sway & wonderbar
Engine: TPI L98 350 W/85 Vette Stage II ECM
Transmission: W/C T-5, alum drive shaft
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Re: How to tell if your struts or springs are bad or need replaced

Quote:
Originally Posted by evilemokid94 View Post
I'm buying from rockauto lol. They don't do sales

Rockauto has a 15% discount though, and a sale on discontinued items for our cars! LOL back @ ya. I bought my Moog steering linkage and replacement steering gear from them. Here is the link on the Rockauto sale;

http://www.rockauto.com/RSS/vehiclef...l=en&html=true

Last edited by 85 ZXX; 11-07-2011 at 09:00 AM.
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Old 11-07-2011, 09:10 AM   #33
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Re: How to tell if your struts or springs are bad or need replaced

How to check springs/struts. with the car sitting on a solid surface, push down on all four corners(preferably over the tire) keep pushing down and get it bouncing up and down, once its bouncing good let go and count how many times it goes up and down, it should only go 1 1/2 times up and down, so if its at the bottom of the travel and you let go it should go up, down then settle in at the ride height. If it keeps bouncing after 1 1/2 times then that spring/strut is bad. Do that on all 4 corners. If one is bad make sure to replace the other sides. so if the front passengers is bad replace the drivers side too
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Old 11-23-2011, 06:54 PM   #34
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Re: How to tell if your struts or springs are bad or need replaced

well i went ahead and did my rear shocks, they were really easy to do after i broke them loose lol, the were the orignials and were dead so the rear end rides alot better now too so that made me happy, the rear passenger shock was loose too so it was rattling and making all kinds of noise so its nice now to not hear that. cant wait to do my struts. but i have a new question, how do you tell when a strut mount is bad? im thinking about replacing both of them when i do my struts just to do them since my driver is rusty anyways and original but how do you know when they are bad?
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1986 camaro sports coupe with a base firebird spoiler, iroc hood, Z28 5 spoke rims, 20% window tint.
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5.7 L31 motor, carter all preformance 600 CFM carb, hei distributer, edelbrock proformer vortec intake, 95 LT1 camshaft, alex springs, double roller chain, rebuilt 700R4, 2.5 inch exhaust with flowmasters 80 series muffler.
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Old 11-23-2011, 07:07 PM   #35
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Re: How to tell if your struts or springs are bad or need replaced

i just changed my struts this week.it was really easy if you have the right tools.you will need a 15/16 socket and a pullbar to break loose the bottom bolts.they are torqued to 195 footpounds.no need to remove the calaper or draw a line across the old strut/spindle as my manual said to do.just support the lower control arm with a jack and unbolt the strut.as i understand it if the strut mount bearing turns freely and isn't wobblely its fine.
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Old 11-23-2011, 07:07 PM
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