I’ve mentioned recently that I just replaced my front struts along with all the rubber parts. Had someone else do the hard work.
I just wanted to comment for the edification of those who’ve never replaced a long-existing set of struts how much road noise was reduced. I never cease to be surprised at how quiet the car comes out when I do this. It’s like brand new again.
For the record, the rubber bushings on which sit the upper and lower ends of the springs, and the rubber bushing contained within the upper strut mounts, dampen a lot of road noise. They absorb and covert to heat energy the vibrations. However rubber compressed for years under perhaps 700 pounds per spring, over a very small contact area at the end of the coils, compresses, thins (due to a process called “cold flow”), and loses its ability to convert the vibrations (the rubber hardens). These are “critical paths” through which road noise either gets damped out or gets transferred to the body structure.
I’ll bet that those of you who are working mechanics always get a frown and a look of suspicion when you suggest replacing upper mounts and bushings. Nobody perhaps believes you. The guy that did mine had it super-easy… I brought all the parts in a box and instructed him to replace them all. I included the exploded view drawing and Toyota part numbers along with the shipping papers so he could see that the parts were correct and OEM. I specified that I wanted the new upper and lower spring bushings and the upper mounts as well as the bumper stops replaced along with the struts. I’m sure most of you guys aren’t that lucky.
I’m hoping that someone out there will think of this post when he/she has his/her struts done, remember it, and the job of convincing will be easier for you pros. If I convince just one person, I’ll feel I’ve contributed.
I love the new quietude. I miss my old body. It broke my heart to have to have someone else bolt everything in.