Automotive

Looking for advice on repairs

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  • Jul 19th, 2015 1:22 pm
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[OP]
Newbie
Sep 30, 2008
4 posts

Looking for advice on repairs

I have two car issues at the moment.
(1) 2008 Matrix needs struts in the front. Should not all 4 struts be replaced? and what type of price should I get for 2 struts installed or 4 stuts installed? Any thoughts on parts, where to go etc. are welcome

(2) 2008 Ford Fusion SEL. Needs new brake rotors and pads all four wheels. Any thoughts on where to go, parts, and pricing are welcome.

I needs a pro to do this - I'm technically inept :)
I live in Oakville.
Thanks.
15 replies
Deal Expert
Jun 30, 2006
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rockauto.com. Canadiantire also has a sale on ATE rotors.
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Jul 22, 2014
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No need to replace 4 struts if the rear ones are ok.
Deal Fanatic
Oct 26, 2008
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(1) Won't be cheap unfortunately.
The independent garage you use will probably use a standard book time of about 3 hours to replace the front struts - whether they use pre-assembled Monroe Quick Struts* or do their own disassembly and re-use your springs.
So that's going to be around $250 labour. Parts could be anywhere between $200 - $600, depending on quality, quick struts or not, new bearing plate or not.
If they recommend replacing the bearing plate (probably wise) that shouldn't add any significant time to the labour.
You will need an alignment afterwards that they may sub-contract, but figure another $100 or so.
So somewhere between $550 and $950, plus tax.

*Quick Struts are a good idea for DIY'ers. Or if you are not planning to keep the car too long and you know someone who will install them for 50 bucks cash or so as a sideline.

(2) Using a dealership as an upper bound where it could cost $1K parts and labour, aim to get it done for not much more than half that with O.E. quality parts at an independent.
Sr. Member
Jul 24, 2009
627 posts
438 upvotes
kitchener
hdensley wrote: I have two car issues at the moment.
(1) 2008 Matrix needs struts in the front. Should not all 4 struts be replaced? and what type of price should I get for 2 struts installed or 4 stuts installed? Any thoughts on parts, where to go etc. are welcome

(2) 2008 Ford Fusion SEL. Needs new brake rotors and pads all four wheels. Any thoughts on where to go, parts, and pricing are welcome.

I needs a pro to do this - I'm technically inept :)
I live in Oakville.
Thanks.
You should replace those items in pairs...if the rear ones are still good, than you don't have to replace those.
A hillbilly (but pretty accurate) way to check for bad shocks/struts is to compress them by applying downward pressure on your bumper/fender.
Upon release, it should not be bouncing up and down, but rather just go up and stay there.
The struts for the Matrix will run you on probably somewhere around $100-$150 a piece plus the labour....expect to pay about $500 or so in total (parts and labour) to get them both done, but could be more depending where you go.

When getting the pads and rotors don't go for the economy priced ones....the mid grade should be fine, but if you're planning to keep your vehicle for longer time you should get the premium...the difference in price is often not that big.
Expect to spend about $400 in parts and about another $400 in labour costs to get them installed...
But since you are not doing this yourself, I would advice against buying the parts separately from another supplier and delivering them to the shop for installation.
You should be aware of the fact, that most shops are not too crazy about installing other parts except the ones they get from their own suppliers.
If you insist on bringing them your own parts, they will not warranty them as far as any future defects are concerned...makes sense, since they can't be liable for something that you bought from someone else.
Should your part fail, they will remove it so you can take it back to where you got it for exchange or refund....but they will still charge you for the labour associated with it.
This is something you should consider since you won't be doing the work yourself, as you are better off just to let the shop order those parts instead....(unless you can get a really good deal that would offset the risk of the added cost associated with their removal should they fail, which is not very likely).
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May 10, 2005
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angry-trucker wrote: .......
A hillbilly (but pretty accurate) way to check for bad shocks/struts is to compress them by applying downward pressure on your bumper/fender.
Upon release, it should not be bouncing up and down, but rather just go up and stay there.
.......
Nothing "hillbilly" about that procedure. if you have a better or any other way of verifying the shocks/struts while on the vehicle, please share.
macnut has the right answers.
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Feb 6, 2011
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angry-trucker wrote: A hillbilly (but pretty accurate) way to check for bad shocks/struts is to compress them by applying downward pressure on your bumper/fender.
Upon release, it should not be bouncing up and down, but rather just go up and stay there.
I wouldn't say its pretty accurate. Depends on how stiff the springs are and how much downward force you can apply. And multi valve shocks can't be properly checked like that. It may pass the bounce test but still be bad.
Sr. Member
Jul 24, 2009
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kitchener
billford wrote: I wouldn't say its pretty accurate. Depends on how stiff the springs are and how much downward force you can apply. And multi valve shocks can't be properly checked like that. It may pass the bounce test but still be bad.
Of course it also depends on other factors...not to mention that the suspension on some cars is so stiff, that the bounce test would be very hard to do without actually denting the car.
But in the context of the OP saying that he's technically "inept"....by using this unscientific way of testing (this is why I called it hillbilly), he might be able to get some basic idea about what's going on down there....it would be at least a good start for him.
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May 10, 2005
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angry-trucker wrote: This guy can explain it for you much better:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BiW0ISi8N-w
In the video you try to substantiate something with, the guest said, the test is old and only tests part of the shock but, he never said it was not a valid test. Pat Goss did say to do what the guest wants you to do you need a trained qualified tech to go on a test drive to determine if the shock is worn. Really?
Yes, the guy explained that go to a shop and pay a tech labour to tell you if you need the shock he was trying to sell you in the first place.
The "old" method still has merit and is a very good indicator.
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billford wrote: I wouldn't say its pretty accurate. Depends on how stiff the springs are and how much downward force you can apply. And multi valve shocks can't be properly checked like that. It may pass the bounce test but still be bad.
It is not the bounce you are testing it is the dampening that the shock provides. If the shock has enough dampening to prevent bouncing, it should still be OK.
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Pete_Coach wrote: It is not the bounce you are testing it is the dampening that the shock provides. If the shock has enough dampening to prevent bouncing, it should still be OK.
It may or may not "still be OK". Depends on the shock, springs, how much force you apply, compound valves, electronic feedback systems.

I'm just saying theres more to the bounce/damping/old method test, or whatever you want to call it.
Sr. Member
Jul 24, 2009
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kitchener
[QUOTE]Pat Goss did say to do what the guest wants you to do you need a trained qualified tech to go on a test drive to determine if the shock is worn. Really?[/QUOTE]

if OP doesn't know what to look for, having the tech (whom knows what to look for) going for a test drive is a pretty good way of determining bad shocks.

What i'm saying is, that this method relies on the personal judgement, rather than diagnostic equipment...since one person's judgement may differ from the next,
This method is not 100%, but it serves as a pretty good indicator..
Sr. Member
Jul 24, 2009
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kitchener
The KYB gentelman in the video is making a valid point with the stage 1 valve not being as involved during the bounce test, but instead of disputing it with an argument as to why you think he's wrong, you chose to spin this into being about the money (even though your original demand made no mention of it as being one of the conditions and a test drive may not necessarily result in being charged...this varies from shop to shop)

Personally, I incorporate 3 ways to check for bad shocks just to be sure:
First I check for any leaks...if I find a leaky shock, it needs to be replaced along with the other side and no further testing is required.
If there are no leaks, I do the bounce test.
If the bounce checks out OK, I take the vehicle for test drive, much like what the KYB gentelman has suggested.
Only then can I be reasonably sure that all is good with the shocks.

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