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Not Happy with Repairs - any advice

Greetings! Recently the struts on my 1998 Honda CRV locked up when it was lifted up for some other work. I took it to a new shop with great prices and excellent reviews.

They only replaced the front shocks and said it was working great and good to go. I have been driving it for a few days and am just not happy with it. It feels tight when it drives and still bouncier than I’d like. It doesn’t drive like my great little car before the shock issue.

This is my first time at this shop and am not sure if I trust them. Any advice for moving forward?

I looked at your other thread and my feeling is that no matter what repairs or what shop does it you are not going to be satisfied . Your 1998 is never going to feel like it did before all of these repairs because apparently you had been driving with worn out parts for a long time.
It may be just time to move up to a new or newer vehicle .

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you vehicle is fairly light. new functioning shocks on the front wheels only might be the issue. maybe you had 4 totally mushy shocks to start with? so, now you have 2 good struts and 2 bad struts? i bet putting new rear shocks on will make the crv ride even stiffer.
i replaced 1 completely shot, zero functioning front strut. the 2nd front strut was very worn also but still had some function left. the ride is quieter, no knocks but is barely any firmer. its certainly not noticable. but it weighs 3900lbs

The shop did nothing wrong. The replacement parts are nearly always firmer than the original parts because they are designed to compensate for all the other stuff that is worn.

Get used to it or sell the car.

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The shop is not at fault here and I see no reason not to trust them. When a car is lifted on a hoist and suspension parts fail because of their age the owner of the car bears the responsibility of the repair. Look at it this way, if I go to the dentist for a root canal and have a heart attack in the chair, it’s not the dentist’s fault.

Have you had this car since it was new? The reason I ask is that the 1st generation CR-V was mechanically a great car but notoriously loud and harsh riding. As shocks and struts wear they tend to “soften up”, making for a better feeling ride but actually providing poorer handling. You may just be feeling what the car rides like with some new suspension pieces.

There are benefits to driving a 20+ year old car, like not having a car payment or full coverage insurance. But there are costs as well, such as lifting the car for a routine oil change turning into needing to replace the struts for several hundred dollars.

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I guess the only issue is the parts that were used and if they were cheap parts or OEM quality. There has been some dissatisfaction with some of the cheaper struts so when you say you had a shop with a great price, I wonder if the parts used of the same variety. Either way it was your dime though so you got what you paid for-no more.

And yeah, it is not unknown that extending older struts and shock can lock them up. Happened to my Riviera and it was like driving a lumber truck until they were replaced.

Hi Bing, Yes that is one of the things I was wondering. The shop had great reviews including many folks saying they did quality work. But that said I honestly don’t know much about the quality of the part and thought that may be related to the what I was experiencing.

I drove it quite a bit today and am feeling a bit better about it. But still feel it wobbles around from side to side more than it did before the shocks locked up. So I imagine it’s possible that replacing the back struts may make a difference with that…

thanks for your feedback asemaster. I get that struts can lock up and that wasn’t the reason for my uncertainty about trusting the mechanic. It was really more related to my questioning if he was providing me with quality parts and standards. I appreciate your feedback and am definitely taking that into consideration of my current driving experience.

I think this is a matter of becoming acclimated to the different ride provided by the new struts.

Some years ago I replaced the struts on my Lincoln. About 30k miles later I performed an oil change at home and when the car was lowered it had a noticeable nose-high stance.
Took it for a drive and it bounced like a tennis ball on the court. So, replace struts again…

Huh? A Honda CR-V is a very common and popular model. Many OEM parts are still available, even for a 20-year old version, and what isn’t available from Honda anymore is readily available from aftermarket manufacturers. Suspension parts are considered consumable, and all of the parts needed to restore the suspension on this CR-V to “like new” condition are still available. Assuming no rust or body damage, it should be possible to have this CR-V ride like new again if desired.

I never said it could not be like new . I said that the OP had been driving on worn parts for long enough that the replacement parts felt strange .

They don’t want it to ride like new, they want the old soft and squishy ride they had with the old parts.

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+1
Because of the way that shocks and struts gradually deteriorate over time, most people become used to the mushy ride that their vehicle acquired as time passed. Then, when new parts are installed, they may become alarmed at the “stiff” ride.

In reality, that “stiff” ride was almost surely the way that their vehicle rode when it was new, but they have gotten so used to the poor ride quality of old, worn-out parts that they assume something is amiss when new parts are installed.

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Reminds me of the guy with the Porsche who wanted his struts replaced. He brought in some used struts because “new ones are so darned expensive.” (Is there anything worse than the 3rd owner of a EuroLux on a budget?)

His original struts were completely wasted, and the used ones he brought in were only half-wasted. As far as I was concerned the car drove like crap when we were done but he was thrilled. Go figure.

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Yes, the 3rd owner of a low-cost car who doesn’t want to pay for anything more complicated than fuel, tires, and maybe oil changes.

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My daughter has a 2005, and with proper suspension, it does feel a little stiffer under small bumps than what may be typical of with most cars. I’m thinking it may be normal for this cars design and you are not used to it. To me it feels like I’m sitting too close to the front wheels.

@tcmichnorth Shouldn’t your reply go to the OP . I don’t have a Honda of any kind.

I have had quite a few cars where I have replaced the struts or shock absorbers. Yes, the ride was stiffer with the new shocks or struts. I prefer a stiffer ride. I don’t like a soft, wallowing ride. A firm, well controlled rude is less tiring for me. One of our vehicles is a Toyota 4Runner. The first impression after driving for a city block is that a wheelbarrow has a more comfortable ride. However, we make the 375 mile trip to visit our son and I don’t feel tired when we arrive. On the other hand we had a ‘smooth riding’.
Oldsmobile 88 and the same trip was very tiring.

What I’m hearing is this . . .

every vehicle is a compromise, as far as ride quality goes

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I prefer a “couch on wheels” ride. That’s why I liked the early 50’s Buicks so much.

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