…really does save nine.
Wear on chassis components tends to go unnoticed as do unusual handling and noises, the standard warning signals. ZF Services being experts in the area have sound advice for us all to save time and money.
The chassis does its work out of view so that in many instances, damage can only be established in the workshop. Even minor wear can sometimes have dangerous repercussions. Vehicle safety is quickly compromised, particularly whenever the chassis components are worn. The experts from ZF Services really stress the importance of regular chassis check on every vehicle. If problems are identified during this check, these need to be pointed out to the owner and immediate action should be taken. Safety should never be a matter of cost.
Abnormal handling and unusual noises are often indicative of faulty chassis components. It is not always the shock absorbers that are affected though. Other chassis components such as the ball joints on the tie rods or the suspension strut mounts are also subject to natural wear. Since many of these components are sealed units in our modern cars, the signs of wear can only be seen once the component has been removed from the vehicle or at least the load removed from the part.
The suspension strut mount connects the body to the chassis but unlike the support bearings on the rear axle, the suspension strut mount has to be able to turn in order to facilitate the steering and rotational movements of the suspension strut. To this end, a rubber-to-metal component tends to be used on volume production vehicles, with a rolling bearing fitted in the center. The metal ensures the necessary stability, the rubber takes care of the required flexibility, and the rolling bearing ensures the rotation. Put simply it is a busy component but is subject to wear in many modes.
Odd sounds indicate damage!
When wear creeps into the suspension strut mount,the steering may actually become unsafe. Cornering may feel spongy and unstable. Creaking or knocking sounds can also often be heard. At this point, it is time to take a close look at the chassis. When removing chassis components, every workshop professional will be aware of the large amount of work involved. Depending on the car type, it may be necessary, for instance, to remove the suspension strut, move the anti-roll bar out of the way, and separate the shock absorber and steering joints. To replace a faulty suspension strut mount, the suspension strut will need to be taken apart. However, this is always going to be worthwhile if it is the key to a safe and comfortable future.
The tie rods are also candidates for wear in the chassis. The ball joints on the tie rods suffer with every small bump as the wheels hit the curb, every pothole, and every time the vehicle moves onto the road shoulder. The tie-rod ends, for instance, can wear out over time – without the driver noticing anything at first. The upshot may be compromised axle geometry, accelerated wear and unstable handling. If your mechanic notices problems with the tie rods or associated joints then replacement should happen immediately, no difference to suspension strut mounts.
Prevent expensive repairs down the line.
When replaced in good time, new suspension strut mounts and/or new tie-rod ball joints not only enhance safety and ride quality. Replacing these components also help prevent expensive repairs down the line. Most customers appreciate the expert advice provided by their workshop. Repairs to steering and suspension components therefore featured top of the list in the latest DAT Report for 2014.
False economy often prevails at this point but it is purely delusional to think there is money to be saved on parts. The larger part of the repair bill will normally be the labour charge in respect of your mechanic’s skill and experience. As a fraction of the repair cost buying the best OEM parts is virtually insignificant. The ZF Services brand Lemförder is already a well-established partner in the spare parts business and always in stock at OTTO. ZF is synonymous with quality, comfort, and safety with more than 13 000 steering and chassis components for passenger cars and commercial vehicles and all original quality parts so never a compromise!