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2013 Front strut noise question- are bearings automatically replaced with new front struts?

Discussion in 'Dodge Journey' started by DBY2014, Dec 7, 2016.

  1. DBY2014

    DBY2014 Member

    Our 2013 Journey SE has had front suspension noises over the last year or so. It's a creaky noise when stopping, going over bumps and turning sometimes. When we first took it in the dealer replaced the control arms. The noise did not disappear. I took it back and then they said it was strut noise and replaced the front struts. The noise still isn't gone. I did more research and found a TSB for 2013 Journeys that mention front end noise and that the solution is replace the front strut bearings. Can I assume the bearings were replaced when they replaced the front struts? My paperwork does not mention bearings at all. I don't know whether to go back and show them what I found or not if the bearings were replaced already. I don't know whether to assume the bearings were replaced or not and don't want to look like a fool at the dealer suggesting they do it. . This is getting really frustrating. Thanks.
  2. OfficialMopar

    OfficialMopar Official Mopar Reps Level 2 Supporter

    Hi DBY2014,

    Your dealership should be able to tell you over the phone if the bearings were also replaced, so that would at least save you a trip to ask the initial question. TSB's also don't apply to every vehicle in a model year, they are somewhat VIN-specific, so I can check for you to see if the TSB you found would come up for your vehicle. Just send a PM with the last 8 digits of your VIN.

    Mopar Social Care Specialist
  3. paullybob

    paullybob Member

    A "good" mechanic will press you to change the entire strut as an assembly exactly because of the scenario you find yourself in. It's difficult to tell visually sometimes if that bearing is defective unless it virtually falls apart in the tech's hand. The other side to this coin is most customers hate paying for repairs in the first place so the tech won't push for the extra expense fearing the customer will walk leaving them with no job at all!!

    When I hear about someone wanting to replace just the strut cartridge , I would push them in an educated manner to replace the strut as a complete assembly. While costing more to purchase, the labour involved was significantly reduced and the entire strut assembly was now warrantied (for life in most cases) making for an easy and more cost conscious repair and a happy customer!!
  4. Bob Lincoln

    Bob Lincoln "CHECK FAULT CODES" Level 2 Supporter

    My 92 Daytona developed strut noise when going over the slightest road imperfections at about 180K miles. I didn't know what it was, it sounded vaguely like clapping two thick wooden blocks together, clunking. Could not find any play or defect, and the spring rate of the struts was fine. Drove it to 260K miles, finally changed the entire strut assembly and the noise disappeared. It was the strut bearings, and there was no visual indication of any problem.
    My hunch is that many mechanics will not change the bearing if they see nothing wrong. But they should, it's short money for a job like that.
  5. DBY2014

    DBY2014 Member

    Cost wasn't an issue because it fell under the 3/36 warranty at the time and I have Max Care until 70K.

    Thank you so much. I will get you the VIN number late today. From the TSB I saw my build date applies to it.
    OfficialMopar likes this.
  6. ka9yhd

    ka9yhd Member

    The only bearing that is associated with the struts is the upper bearing support. Since your vehicle is only a few years old, they will just replace the struts. The upper bearing supports will need to be purchased separately.
    On an older car with high mileage I usually recommend replacing the entire strut assembly, which consists of the strut spring and upper bearing already assembled as a unit. Now some people claim this is a more expensive route, but if you were to price the individual pieces the price would come out about the same as a complete assembly already assembled. Next add in the cost of labor to build the strut assembly from the individual pieces then the price of the strut assembly comes out cheaper.

    But since you have a warranty, I would take it back to the dealer and tell them to replace both upper bearing supports, one for each side.
    paullybob and Doug D like this.
  7. ka9yhd

    ka9yhd Member

    It is also safer to replace the entire strut assembly instead of using a spring compressor to relive the tension to dissemble the unit. If the spring compressor is not used correctly and slips you can be seriously injured.

    The reason I recommend replacing the entire strut assembly is 1. the upper bearing supports do wear and will start to make noise and 2. you are reusing an old spring that could break at a later date. I have seen this happen on high mileage vehicles. Nothing worse then rebuilding it only to have to do it again because of a broken spring.