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Is it dangerous to drive with broken struts?

I have a'98 Ford Escort with 106,000 miles. I drive about 60 miles each day, mainly on county roads - speed limit 55mph. i live in NE Colorado. I have been told that the struts on all 4 axles/wheels need to be replaced at a cost of about $1250. As this is greater than the value of the car, I am not going to do it.

Is it dangerous to drive my car in this condition? If I got a new set of tires (I need new tires anyway) and decided I would drive the car for about 3 more years and then get something else, would it be OK to just not replace the struts for 3 years?

Thanks for any advice.
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Comments

  • edited February 2011
    There's 'broken', and there's 'worn'. How bad is the handling? Does it bounce around a lot after you hit a bump? Who told you they were worn out? Have you checked around for prices? Sometimes shops have sales on replacement shocks/struts, including installation.
  • edited February 2011
    [quote]Is it dangerous to drive with broken struts?[/quote]

    Only if you drive over 30mph....
  • edited February 2011
    VALUE OF THE CAR ???
    Dude, you're not selling it, YOU'RE KEEPING IT !

    Get new struts AND tires and it'll feel like a whole new car, and drive like one too.

    Shop around for total price.
    Different shops AND different parts places like Auto Zone, or O'Reilly's.

    You can't afford to ?
    You can't afford NOT to.
  • edited February 2011
    If you do any car work at all on your own (or if you have a good friend or relative who is good with cars), search this site and the web for things called "Quick Struts" - they make this a reasonable DIY job. If you don't mess with cars very much don't try it though.

    Although 106K is not an unreasonable time to need struts, what you really need to do though is answer texases questions. If you put the phrase "you need new struts" through a Mechanic to English translator I believe the literal translation comes out to be "we have been slow and are trying to boost business." Be especially suspicious if they also offered to change your tail light fluid and filter.
  • edited February 2011
    Broken is in the eye of the beholder. If there is evidence of fluid leaking past the shaft seal but the assembly is structurally sound there is no reason to panic. But when the handling becomes loose and the wheels bounce look for some relief from a repair shop or a car lot.
  • edited February 2011
    I wouldn't put new tires on a car with bad struts. That can easily ruin the new tires.
  • edited February 2011
    Exactly!
    Putting new tires on a car with weak/failing/blown struts is an exercise in false economy.

    I'm sure that the OP is correct about needing new tires, but he/she is going to need to replace those new tires very prematurely if they are mounted on a car with bad struts. The reason is that the tires will bounce excessively on the road surface, thus leading to irregular tread wear that takes a very fast toll on the treads.

    I know that it is hard to accept "investing" a lot of money in a 12-13 year old car, but getting reasonably-priced struts installed along with new tires might actually cost less in the long run than having to buy two sets of tires during that 3 year period.

    And, then there is the issue of safety. Bad struts cause bad roadholding, which is a safety issue. Don't think of this as merely a case of a car that rides poorly. The car will also be much less safe--particularly on wet or wintery roads.

    Give some thought to doing the responsible thing by replacing the struts as well as the tires.
  • edited February 2011
    It is really hard for any mechanic to say "go ahead and drive" when a suspension or brake component has a known fault. It is one thing to be driving on a broken part if you do not know it is broken (I am speaking ethicaly) and a completely different story if you do know the part is defective.

    There is an entire new area to explore if you want to include the degree of "brokeness" in the conversation. You most often get into this conversation with ball joints as some say any play in a ball joint is to much, but when a ball joint fails the results are much more likely more catastrophic than the results of poor handling (espically if you are used to the poor handling).
  • edited February 2011
    Do youurself and everyone else a favor and REPLACE YOUR STRUTS...while you replace your tires. That way you wont go bombing off the road and or drift into the other lane and smash into us...
  • edited February 2011
    It is extremely unsafe to drive with broken struts. Your rolling pile of junk will lose traction very easy at higher speeds or bumpy roads. Basically your tire will not keep its contact with the road and make braking and control compromised.

    I would get another estimate, $1250 seems way too high unless you there is far more involved.

    Don't bother with tires.
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