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Front struts, 2002 DGC Sport

Discussion in 'Minivans · Pacifica' started by Mile011, Feb 9, 2020.

  1. Mile011

    Mile011 Well-Known Member

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    Time to replace those.
    Looking at the Rockauto; it shows FCS, Gabriel, Monroe and KYB
    Any preferences?
    Search topic didn't give me much results on this.

    Thank you
     
  2. Bob Lincoln

    Bob Lincoln "CHECK FAULT CODES"
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    I would NEVER use Gabriel - two bad experiences.
    1) A pair of their high-end shocks completely disintegrated in 4 years and 65k miles - the housings crumbled away to nothing. I could crush the housing with a light squeeze. Never had that happen in my life, before or since.
    2) I bought Gabriel Ultra Heavy Duty struts, and when I assembled them with new springs and hardware, the springs were bowed and rubbed against the wheelwell. Had a pro check them. Determined that the bottom plate the spring sits on was welded at a wrong angle, so as to make the spring bow, no matter how you tried to assemble it. Autozone refused to take it back. Had the dealer install OEM brand - I think it was KYB - and no issues.
     
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  3. Mile011

    Mile011 Well-Known Member

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    Thanks Bob
    I am leaning towards Monroe anyway.
    It is only, like $50, more then Gabriel and they have life-time warranty on them.

    PS
    I am buying assembled ones.
     
  4. valiant67

    valiant67 ...

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    I always used Monroe on my minivans. Maybe a little firmer than stock but they were fine.
     
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  5. Rick Anderson

    Rick Anderson Well-Known Member

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    Sachs is well regarded, often the OEM supplier for many vehicles, including many Chrysler/FCA Vehicles. They tend to cost more, but just a bit more....

    I'm a bit turned off by both Monroe and Gabriel, seemed like an inexpensive direct replacement, but didn't last nearly as long as the OEM, perhaps the Gabriel shorter lived than the Monroe....

    KYB, seem to be a bit stiffer than OEM, seen a few reviews of the GR2 (I think their performance model) in certain vehicles as people being dissatisfied as them being past stiff, to harsh..... ...but I doubt KYB makes the GR2 for the DGC, likely its there standard strut/shock....

    On RockAuto, I saw recently they had a clearance on the Gabriel Struts (I forget the model, but they were painted red) for only $8.99..... ....I was tempted, but ultimately considered if they are dumping the stock of strut for 12% the typical price, just how good of struts are these? Didn't scoop them up....

    I know nothing of FCS, but there is naturally skepticism about quality and durability when they are the cheapest Struts/Shocks you can find.........
     
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  6. Mile011

    Mile011 Well-Known Member

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    I am debating between Monroe and KYB
    Both assembled, both life time warranty.
    Difference is about $55, $190 for Monroe vs $255 for KYB.
    It's not much but do I really need KYB, especially, if they stiffer then Monroe.
    Looks like Monroe may be a way to go.
    Will see if I can dig more info.
     
  7. Doug D

    Doug D Virginia Gentleman

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    If you prefer a softer ride, I'd go with the Monroe.
     
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  8. page2171

    page2171 Well-Known Member

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    When I did the struts on our 2002 DGC I went with Monroes. No complaints.
     
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  9. Mile011

    Mile011 Well-Known Member

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    Did you change struts only or you went with whole set?
     
  10. Bob Lincoln

    Bob Lincoln "CHECK FAULT CODES"
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    Always change the entire assembly. My 92 Daytona started making a noise at 180K miles, a knocking/clunking at the slightest road imperfection. Checked for play in everything, tire shop checked front end, all OK. By 260K miles I had decided it was the top strut bearing that was worn, and sure enough, it went away when the whole strut assembly was replaced. So don't do just the struts.
     
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  11. page2171

    page2171 Well-Known Member

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    I went with the Sensa Trac Quick Struts (I think that's what they were called) where the strut and spring come as a unit.
     
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  12. Mile011

    Mile011 Well-Known Member

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    Yes, whole assembly.
    Those are the ones I am looking at.
    I read somewhere that some owners were saying after installing those, they noticed that front end was "kinda" lower then before.
    And, it may be due to new springs on Monroe assembly.
     
  13. Mile011

    Mile011 Well-Known Member

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    Thank you but I wasn't going to.
    I am looking at whole assembly, not struts only.
     
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  14. Rick Anderson

    Rick Anderson Well-Known Member

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    Personally, I rather keep the OEM springs that will still be good when the car has sat in the junkyard for decades, instead of replacing them with a cheap aftermarket spring that might be a different spring rate....

    If you look at the OEM catalog, you'll see a list of dozen of springs, your OEM spring was selected from those dozens of options for your particular configuration and equipment. Now check the aftermarket catalog for the company marketing your Pre-Assembled/Cartridge/Strut Assembly and see they have only one spring they offer for your vehicle, not dozens....

    But you do need to replace the Strut Mount with the Strut, do not re-use Strut old Mounts and the bearing plate, but most quality Strut Mounts will include the bearing plate.... ....the bump stop, you should replace that also, unless your's is in perfect shape, and you won't know that till you take it all apart, so I just get new ones instead of having to wait half-way through the job.... ....I also get the upper and lower spring isolators, but arguably that is unnecessary, unless they are really bad shape you can re-use them....
     
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  15. Mile011

    Mile011 Well-Known Member

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    Thank you Rick.
    I will not be doing this; it will be done by mechanic (not a back yard, street guy).
    Shop is closed by and guy is trustworthy. He's been doing this only 40+
    He recommended KYB assembly and I just ordered those. I will most likely order a sway bar set, with bushings, too.
     
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  16. Mile011

    Mile011 Well-Known Member

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    I ordered, also, MOOG sway bar links.
    It was a choice between MOOG and ACDELCO.
     
  17. ka9yhd

    ka9yhd Well-Known Member

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    When I rebuilt the front end on my 92 Grand Voyager, I went with the complete strut assemblies from Napa. They seem to work fine.
    I would rather do the assembly and not just replace the struts only. The last thing I want to do is have to go back and replace an upper bearing support or a broken spring.
     
  18. Stephen

    Stephen Active Member

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    I'm pretty sure that's what the PO did on my blue '05; it sits a good 2" lower than my old red '05. I can find out tomorrow what's on this van. I really miss the higher ride height.
    R&B.JPG
     
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  19. Rick Anderson

    Rick Anderson Well-Known Member

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    This is why I just spend the extra hour doing the job to remove the springs and re-install them on the new strut...... ...I highly doubt the spring I'm getting in that aftermarket strut assembly/cartridge is as quality nor as tailored to the vehicle and its configuration, as the one already on there.....

    I've never had a spring break, and only had a spring degrade on 1970's or earlier cars with the rear leaf springs, and that was the hardware between the leafs.... ...these things last for 10's of millions of cycles....

    I use my '02 DGC as secondary beater pick-up truck, 225k miles, original 41TE transmission, so I'm not sure how much I want to invest in it to keep it running........
    But the suspension noise while driving has me worried, various clunks and bumps, from the front suspension... ....there is no sign of worn ball joints, the front lower control arm bushings, the rearward looks pretty chewed up....

    I replaced the SwayBar bushings and EndLinks, that certainly cut down the noise a lot, but there is still noise.....

    Considering my use and expectations of remaining life, I'll probably get some cheap parts....
    Monroe Monro-Matic Struts/Shocks, WestStar Strut Mount.... re-use the spring isolator pads, bump stops and belows.... ...maybe new control arms, perhaps the SKP from RockAuto, which are pretty inexpensive...

    If I was using it as a daily driver, I'd be getting Sachs Strut Shocks and Moog Hardware... ....I don't see the point when I may be junking the vehicle in the next year or two....
     
    #19 Rick Anderson, Feb 12, 2020
    Last edited: Feb 12, 2020
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  20. Doug D

    Doug D Virginia Gentleman

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    Neither have I. I never replaced the struts/springs on our '00 T&C Ltd though I was hearing some noises up front when we traded it. On my Acclaims ('90 & '92) I only replaced the struts and kept the original springs.

    It's rare for springs to actually break. At worst they seem to weaken or suffer metal fatigue over time since they are always under constant pressure.
     
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