Auto suspension secrets.....from the FUCK ALL THIEVING MECHANICS series!
This summer I hit one of Montreals famous pot holes and caused one of the struts on my car to leak oil. So for the last few weeks I have been shopping around to have the struts replaced. I got estimates ranging from $700 to $1200 to have both struts replaced. All of these places suggested that I replace the TOP PLATE. They told me that the additional cost would be from $25 to $80 per side.
I called the dealer and found out that the top plate is not one piece, it is realy 4 pieces consiting of a metal top plate that holds a rubber gasget thatsits on top of a bearing that sits on top of a second gasget that sits on top of the strut. The cost of the top plate assembly was $140 and only availble from the manufacturer. I also found out that it is a rarely requested item and not even always in stock at the dealers. I can only guess that the suspension places are padding their bill with the charge for top plates that they do not replace.
I found out that the dealers are offering strut assemblies with a new top plate assembly and coil spring for only $40 more than the cost of the strut. ( $198 for each strut, $239 for the complete suspension assembly) If purchased seperately the assembly would cost $418 each. So check with your dealer if there are whole suspension assemblies for your car, it saved me money in parts and installation time and I got a new suspension.
And remember, kick your thieving mechanic in the crotch when you see him.
Last edited by J. Peterman; 09-05-2007 at 02:18 PM.
Sorry to hear that you feel like your being taken for a ride. Being a mechanic, I know that it is not always needed to replace the mounts (or top plates) after a collision with a pothole. However, if you car is older, or has high mileage, the top plates may break when attempting to replace the shocks.
I agree that there are quite a few crooks out there, and it makes the job harder for the honest guys (there are a few out there).
Yes, you are right.
Since my car is only a couple of years old, there is no need to replace the TOP PLATES. It is only when a car is about 10 years old and has a lot of mileage on it that the TOP PLATES need to be replace. This may also be true on a car that is not driven often and moisture has gotten into the bearing and caused rust to form in the TOP PLATE bearing.