I purchased Gabriel Ready Mount/Shock/Struts Part Number G57005 which I found specified for 1994 VW Jetta, but upon installation I found that they did not come with a retainers (the bow-like part that fits above the strut mounts and flush with the body of the car), and the retainers that I had taken off the top of the old struts did not fit with the strut mounts. the old retainers don’t go flush with the body on top of these struts. They leave a space of more than an inch, which would mean lots of play for the strut mount. Does anyone have an experience with these Gabriel Struts and their application in VW? Is there a kind of retainer that’s not the typical VW retainer?
Sorry for no answer. I’m just a novice but I took a look at a youtube on the Jetta struts. If its the same thing it looks like the top cap is what you are talking about. So the upper strut mount goes underneath and then the cap goes on top of the tower with a second nut on the strut. The other more common type just has three studs that are fastened to the strut tower.
Seems kind of fail safe so not sure what’s going on. Could it be possible that the nut holding the upper mount and compressing the spring is not tightened down all the way? That would mean that the top cap would not fit down tight enough. I guess I’d do a very careful look at the old versus new to make sure the mounts are the same and same length and so on. Might have to just take it back to the store with the tower cap and see what they say.
Perhaps You Could Compare Your Strut Assemblies With Monroe Quick Struts (Also Assemblies) If They Make Them To Fit Your Vehicle And If They’re In Stock Somewhere Nearby.
I just posted a long update here, but it did not show up. Now I can’t write that much any more. It turns out the retainers were already attached to the struts, and I was supposed to remove them before sliding the struts under the car. oops! I had asked Autozone how come there was nothing to go on top, and they said these struts are just made to work that way. Still, after I installed and was sure they did not work that way, I drove to autozone, showed them the weird assembly, but they said all I needed was to go to a mechanic who had the right tools to tighten the bolts. I knew it was never going to work. So I called the manufacturer. They told me the retainers were supposed to be taken off before sliding the struts under the car … which would have been obvious if anything in their instructions or outlook of the assembly suggested that part of what looked like the mount was actually the retainer that I was looking for. Their installation guidelines indicate that you just slide it there whole … except for the bolt which goes on the top. Anyway, problem solved. Thanks @Bing and @Common Sense Answer.
Thanks for the update and glad it worked out. So much for the Autozone pros huh?
@Bing, certainly this experience told me what their “expert opinion” is worth. Just get your knowlege elsewhere, but you may buy the item from them. That’s the lesson.