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View Full Version : Help needed buying struts. KYB vs Monroe



woolveren
10-24-2011, 08:56 AM
Hello friends,

I have a 98 Audi A4 1.8t ( non-sport suspension). Its almost 212K and still going with the stock struts and shocks. Recently car started showing
symptoms like premature tire wearing, front end shaking terribly back and forth while sudden braking. Also two tires( one in front and other back) are cupped very badly and outer layer seems to start separating.

And of course, I took it to the mechanic and was told to replace the struts soon. And I thought of getting struts online as it is more cheaper.
And here is where I need some suggestions from you guys.:)

I found KYB-GR-2 Excel struts for a good deal. I know KYB struts are good and have been using it in my Toyota for more than 70k miles and still going good.

Also, I have heard that Monroe Sensa trac struts are better for a smooth driving and comfort compared to KYB.

And about Bilsteins, it seems like it is more used in off road vehicles and are more heavy duty.

QUESTION 1: So my first question is , which one is better for a daily driver (medium performance driving) car?

QUESTION 2: Do I need to replace the coil springs since the mileage is 212k? ( I have heard that coil springs usually donít need the replacement. Is it true?)

If I need coil springs, I am thinking of getting Eibach springs. Howís that spring?

Please advise...

walky_talky20
10-24-2011, 09:24 AM
KYB is a good brand. I believe they are actually the one of the OEM suppliers for Toyota. OEM for Audi is BOGE which are also very good. It seems like the factory shocks on the B5's seem to last a very long time in most cases. I think BOGE or KYB would be a little more controlled than a Monroe (ie: slightly more aggressive than a Monroe).

If you don't mind, what is your price on the KYB's? To me it looks like around $100/corner. Add some Eibach's and your at $150/corner. For a little more you can something really nice. ST coilovers are only $200/corner and most say they offer a ride quality very near OEM sport at whatever height you want.

Again, not sure how good of a deal you're getting on the KYB's, so I don't know what other options are competing. Also not too sure on your desire for a more sporty ride, or just to fix this as cheaply as possible. I will say that if you are doing OEM replacements, I would suggest you go for the BOGE sport shocks as they are nearly the same price as the BOGE non-sport. Those would be paired very nicely with the Eibach springs if you wish, which are probably the most stock-like for the aftermarket sport spring choices. If your springs are in good condition then you don't really need to replace them, no. But at those kind of miles the rears are common to rust and break near the ends, and I've seen the front ones do the same.

Bilsteins give a pretty aggressive feeling ride. Probably not the best for a DD unless you're really after some handling.

I'm sure he checked, but just to be sure: Are you certain the cupping issues are not due to worn control arms up front? Loose/worn ball joints in the front end are very common on this chassis (there are 16 of them in the front end from the factory if you include the sway bar links).

Longfist86
10-24-2011, 10:00 AM
^ I second that, the culprit is usually worn control arm bushings and strut mounts versus the struts them selves.

woolveren
10-24-2011, 10:25 AM
@Walky-talky20

The KYB GR-2 struts are priced at $90 each for front ones and &75 each for back ones. And I get $33 OFF from the total, which makes the final price to $295.

The Eibach Pro-kit lowering spring is for $270 (if Iím buying).

Where can I get Boge struts for a reasonable price. I just looked in ECStuning.com and is priced around $700..:)

Also, you think that itís a good idea to replace spring coils too. Right?

walky_talky20
10-24-2011, 11:20 AM
That's a good price for the KYB's. Our price at the shop, wholesale, is not even that good. I'd probably go with those. Any additional performance of the BOGE stuff (if there is any) is not worth it for the extra cost. Not sure if you have quattro or not, but the BOGE stuff would probably run a bit over $400 or more. There is something to be said for using the shocks that were originally designed and spec'd for the vehicle. If you want it to ride like a factory B5, that's BOGE. A different shock brand may change the feel (personality?) of the car. But not worth it if the price is not even competitive.

For the springs, if you are wanting some firmer handling and some lowering, the Eibach's are decent from what I've heard. One of the milder side of the sport springs you can choose, which is good if you aren't upgrading the shocks very much. $270 is a little high for springs maybe. I think Nuespeed springs are only $200. FK's are even cheaper, but I don't know of anyone actually running those. I got some H&R sport springs used on the forums here for $150 I think. If you are wanting to save money, you can certainly reuse your existing springs. That is what any mechanic would do as long as they are not cracked, broken, sagging, or extremely rusty. Your mechanic certainly cares not about ride height, lol.

ECS Tuning-Audi
10-24-2011, 11:28 AM
@Walky-talky20

The KYB GR-2 struts are priced at $90 each for front ones and &75 each for back ones. And I get $33 OFF from the total, which makes the final price to $295.

The Eibach Pro-kit lowering spring is for $270 (if Iím buying).

Where can I get Boge struts for a reasonable price. I just looked in ECStuning.com and is priced around $700..:)

Also, you think that itís a good idea to replace spring coils too. Right?


Ive put together a set of shocks for any one on a budget. check out the link below.

Click HERE to order or for more information (http://www.ecstuning.com/Cart/?add1=4606&qty1=2&add2=248473&qty2=2 &utm_source=audizine&utm_medium=forum&utm_campaign=pm&utm_content=JMarusic&salesrep=JMarusic). This set is for vehicles up to 2001

Let me know if you have any other questions.

Jason

woolveren
10-24-2011, 01:36 PM
@Walky-talky

Yeah, the KYB seems to be a great deal.

Also, how can I check(myself) whether the control arms are bad? Can I check it visually looking under the car?

I will tell you exactly what happens when braking.

Case 1: If coming to a sudden stop in a highway or a road where there is no gutters or bumps, front end(including steering wheel) doesn't shake.

Case2: If coming to a sudden stop in a bumpy/ bad road, I can hear the thunderstorm sounds and all of a sudden front end(including steering wheel) starts shaking.

So do you think it's the control arms doing this?

woolveren
10-24-2011, 02:54 PM
??

woolveren
10-25-2011, 10:28 AM
Nobody here to answer?? :)

ECS Tuning-Audi
10-25-2011, 10:30 AM
Check out this video.


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tbeBvu49ts4

Jason

walky_talky20
10-25-2011, 05:24 PM
Lower joints are checked similarly (ie: looking for play), however you need to pry on the joints directly with a pry-bar in the up/down direction to reveal the play. I should really make a video of this sometime as I've never seen any visual instruction available on how this is done.

Contrary to what the video says, failure of these ball joints even with perfectly intact boots is *extremely common*. The joints are loaded quite heavily and the design has proved somewhat inadequate to compete with the excellent longevity seen in other makes. Like a lower ball joint in say, a '92 Camry. Every seen one of those fail? Almost never. 500k miles you say? Good to go.

woolveren
10-25-2011, 05:56 PM
I jacked the car today and checked both front sides. I tried to move the control arms with my hand and they seems pretty stable. The bushes are kind of okay, but not in a great condition. Everything else feels stable with hand and I don't see any loose parts. Or do I need a special heavy tool to check the movement of control arms?

walky_talky20
10-25-2011, 06:39 PM
Indeed, the lower ones require a pry-bar to reveal the play (if any) in my experience. The longer the better. (< That's what she said?).

You want one with a curved end, and you are specifically prying between the rounded top of the front-lower (straight) control arm (ie: directly above the internal ball joint), and the steel upright directly outside of/above it. So to reiterate, you are prying between that rounded part of the control arm and the upright (spindle). The goal is to pry the control arm DOWN and the upright UP with respect to each other. Prying in this manner (on the front arm) should successfully reveal play in both (either) of the lower arms on that side.

Also, if you are getting a lot of noise, make sure you check the sway bar "C" links. From the factory they use 2 spherical ball joints on each link and are highly prone to failure. Such a failure causes tons of rattling/knocking type noises on rough, bumpy surfaces, especially when only 1 front wheel at a time is hitting the bump.

woolveren
10-25-2011, 07:17 PM
Sway bar links and rightside axle were replaced one month ago. After that some noises went off, but the vibration thingy didn't change. Vibration always happens as described in the above two cases..mainly starts from the left side..