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I've got a 2016 touring with just over 100K miles, and wondering when people have have replaced struts/shocks. The car definitely doesn't feel bad, but it also doesn't feel brand-new.

Planning on keeping this thing for another 125K at least.
 

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Depends on what kind of roads you've been driving on.

80% of my 140k+ miles and almost 6 years have been on the highway which, obviously, won't be doing as much damage as side roads or some of the unpaved ones in my area. There's a notorious couple of private streets in my city that people who live on them have to replace struts every couple of years.

I still feel like mine are doing fantastic, but I'm expecting something to go wrong sooner rather than later.

That being said....my wife's Mazda 3 had a strut MOUNT break before the actual strut thanks to our winters up here - so you never know.
 

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That's helpful, thanks! I've been wondering on this one. I've driven a couple vehicles well past 200K miles before, and I regretted not doing suspension earlier (while the vehicle was still worth the cost of struts). So I don't want to drive this into the ground, but the suspension definitely feels better at 100K than I expected.

Nearly all of my driving is freeway/highway. Michigan/Indiana roads are crap, but the suspension definitely hasn't been abused too badly.
 

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That's helpful, thanks! I've been wondering on this one. I've driven a couple vehicles well past 200K miles before, and I regretted not doing suspension earlier (while the vehicle was still worth the cost of struts). So I don't want to drive this into the ground, but the suspension definitely feels better at 100K than I expected.

Nearly all of my driving is freeway/highway. Michigan/Indiana roads are crap, but the suspension definitely hasn't been abused too badly.
Yeah, New England roads fair no better. I drive my car pretty hard in a lot of turns and it still feels great as I've said.

I know of a couple other people on this forum who have similar milage (one around 150k and one over 160k) and so far as I know, neither of them have had any suspension issues yet - though one of them is in Florida where the roads are pristine haha.
 

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Ha! I'm that guy and I drive ALL OVER the country -- including up in the frozen north (but usually not when frozen) where "road" is not a very precise word for what cars travel on.

Check for play in tie rod ends, ball joints and suspension bushings, along with the dampers (bounce each corner, see if it keeps bouncing or stops immediately when you quit.) That which isn't working right replace. The usual cause of "loosey-goosey" feelings in the suspension are bushings and tie rod ends, none of which is expensive (but some are a pain in the butt to change.) This stuff should be checked when your rotate your tires as the wheel is off the ground. Takes a minute or two and a helper to shake the wheel strongly while you look for movement where there should be none. Pay attention to tie rod ends and ball joints; break one of those while driving and you will be VERY unhappy. They're not expensive or very hard to replace either but do NOT buy "Chineesium" parts for either.

Struts depend on the car. So far mine are ok. My Jetta went to about 150k before the fronts needed replaced, and I did all four at the same time just to save the hassle of doing the rear shocks later. The fronts were a pain in the butt, specifically, the pax side, which I engineered a way to get out without dropping the control arm (the official way to do it) which would have necessitated an alignment. Now, with 250k, they're getting a bit iffy again. Hmmm... maybe those aftermarket ones (Konis) weren't as good as the OEs eh? They certainly haven't lasted as long...

BTW I won't be buying that brand for the Mazda when the time comes. They look like crap (rusty); when the OE ones came out of the Jetta the OE paint and finish was still perfectly good. So much for "better" than OE eh?

Incidentally at 250k the tie rod ends and ball joints on the Jetta are just fine (!) The rear control arm bushings, however, are starting to show enough checking to be worth replacement although they're still tight and I've changed the strut tower bushings as well (when I did the struts.) Neither is serious at this point but the next time I have a reason to do anything with the suspension I'll change those and since there's a bit of checking on the CV boots I'll pull the axles, inspect the internals, replace what's showing signs of distress and re-boot them before the boots fail and destroy the joint itself.

Maybe there really IS something to that "German engineering" thing they talk about...
 

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Ha! I'm that guy and I drive ALL OVER the country -- including up in the frozen north (but usually not when frozen) where "road" is not a very precise word for what cars travel on.

Check for play in tie rod ends, ball joints and suspension bushings, along with the dampers (bounce each corner, see if it keeps bouncing or stops immediately when you quit.) That which isn't working right replace. The usual cause of "loosey-goosey" feelings in the suspension are bushings and tie rod ends, none of which is expensive (but some are a pain in the butt to change.) This stuff should be checked when your rotate your tires as the wheel is off the ground. Takes a minute or two and a helper to shake the wheel strongly while you look for movement where there should be none. Pay attention to tie rod ends and ball joints; break one of those while driving and you will be VERY unhappy. They're not expensive or very hard to replace either but do NOT buy "Chineesium" parts for either.

Struts depend on the car. So far mine are ok. My Jetta went to about 150k before the fronts needed replaced, and I did all four at the same time just to save the hassle of doing the rear shocks later. The fronts were a pain in the butt, specifically, the pax side, which I engineered a way to get out without dropping the control arm (the official way to do it) which would have necessitated an alignment. Now, with 250k, they're getting a bit iffy again. Hmmm... maybe those aftermarket ones (Konis) weren't as good as the OEs eh? They certainly haven't lasted as long...

BTW I won't be buying that brand for the Mazda when the time comes. They look like crap (rusty); when the OE ones came out of the Jetta the OE paint and finish was still perfectly good. So much for "better" than OE eh?

Incidentally at 250k the tie rod ends and ball joints on the Jetta are just fine (!) The rear control arm bushings, however, are starting to show enough checking to be worth replacement although they're still tight and I've changed the strut tower bushings as well (when I did the struts.) Neither is serious at this point but the next time I have a reason to do anything with the suspension I'll change those and since there's a bit of checking on the CV boots I'll pull the axles, inspect the internals, replace what's showing signs of distress and re-boot them before the boots fail and destroy the joint itself.
^^ "He's right, you know." - Red

Maybe there really IS something to that "German engineering" thing they talk about...
Yeah, that when it actually works, it works amazing; but that's less than half the time :lol:
 

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Yeah, that when it actually works, it works amazing; but that's less than half the time :lol:

I can confirm this lol, I had an 01 Audi A4 1.8T Quattro and it was an AMAZING car...when it was running right I think in the two years I had it, it single handedly paid for my fathers car trailer :laugh2:
 

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Well, fair point except.....

That Jetta has never once stranded anyone. Of course I do the maintenance that's supposed to be done, which might have something to do with it.

It and my "6" are the pair of lowest TCO vehicles I've ever owned. The Jetta loses now only because diesel is so damned expensive here in the US comparatively; when it was comparable the mileage boost made it a huge win over long periods of time. Now, not so much -- you can't overcome a 30% difference in fuel price (and sometimes more depending on where you are!)

The grunt of the turbo down low on a diesel is nice too. Oh by the way the turbo and clutch on that car are OE -- with 250,000 miles on the clock, and the cam looked fine the last time I had the valve cover off (to do the timing belt.) I'll change cam and lifters, plus the oil pump and its drive chain next time I have it apart at 300k -- I fully expect the car to be on the road then, assuming it doesn't get hit.
 

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The shocks and struts on my 2016 with 70k miles are completely worn out, (driving 95% highway).
The noise from the front are scary bad and the rear are swaying. I don't trust the OEM from Mazda but don't know what aftermarket brand to go with. I would like to go with Bilstein B4 or B6 system, however they don't carry a complete front system with springs.
Any ideas? This as I have to do something about before getting new tires.
Where I live many of the shops are very "sketchy" including the dealer shops (read Tri-Cities WA), plus none of the shops won't let me buy and pay the parts to be installed. This will result with double or triple material cost.
The few places where I asked a quote from are at 1400 dollars upwards!
That when the material (if I would buy it is around 400 dollars).

Second concern, do I want to have a warranty regarding the job or not?
Is it worth the money?
Would you recommend using a ASE technical school for this matter?
Labor cost is so much lower but labor warranty is not included.

I am still paying on the car, so technically the car isn't mine.

Thanks for reading the concern of mine and Thanks for a great forum.

Btw,
 

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Odds are the springs are perfectly fine. Unless you live in the rust zone, and likely even then -- at this age the odds of the springs being bad are near-zero. I'd probably buy the Bilstein's.

I'm surprised with that mileage and use pattern yours are trashed. Mine are still "ok" (not great, but ok) at 190k miles (!!) on my 2015. But much depends on the roads you drive on -- if you're in pothole city, well...... yeah, you're going to buy suspension parts on a MUCH more frequent basis.

It's not that hard to pull the struts and then move the springs. You need a set of compressors and you have to be careful, but it's not a difficult job. I haven't looked at the "6" closely enough yet to see if you have to do anything hinky to get the fronts out; on the VW it's a monkey show due to the strut going INTO the knuckle, and getting clearance to remove it can be trouble. If I remember correctly looking at the "6" the last time I rotated the tires a couple of months ago that's not a concern on these cars, which should make it easy to extract and replace them.

If the car feels "loose" check the control arm bushings and tie rod ends -- if they're deteriorated that'll DEFINITELY do that and that is also something you do not want to ignore as it will lead to abnormal tire wear as well. A tie rod end that fails will hose you HARD. It's a decent bet that the problem isn't the struts.
 

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Odds are the springs are perfectly fine. Unless you live in the rust zone, and likely even then -- at this age the odds of the springs being bad are near-zero. I'd probably buy the Bilstein's.

I'm surprised with that mileage and use pattern yours are trashed. Mine are still "ok" (not great, but ok) at 190k miles (!!) on my 2015. But much depends on the roads you drive on -- if you're in pothole city, well...... yeah, you're going to buy suspension parts on a MUCH more frequent basis.

It's not that hard to pull the struts and then move the springs. You need a set of compressors and you have to be careful, but it's not a difficult job. I haven't looked at the "6" closely enough yet to see if you have to do anything hinky to get the fronts out; on the VW it's a monkey show due to the strut going INTO the knuckle, and getting clearance to remove it can be trouble. If I remember correctly looking at the "6" the last time I rotated the tires a couple of months ago that's not a concern on these cars, which should make it easy to extract and replace them.

If the car feels "loose" check the control arm bushings and tie rod ends -- if they're deteriorated that'll DEFINITELY do that and that is also something you do not want to ignore as it will lead to abnormal tire wear as well. A tie rod end that fails will hose you HARD. It's a decent bet that the problem isn't the struts.

I'm with him. My springs, even at 165k miles now and living well inside the rust belt, are doing just fine. I put some Bilstein B8s on my front and love them. Waiting for the chance to do the same to the back (which I thought was going to be a couple months ago but it turned out to be something else making the racket).
 

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I am with @Per for low shock life. My 2015 just celebrated 5 years, 4 years/60K as a lease and 1 year/25K as my CPO. It just hit 85K. I live just outside downtown Toronto, and original owner was pretty much 4 years of city driving. He only put 60k on the car but it was mostly city. I did a couple 1000km road trips to Montreal (pothole city and highways just as bad) and up north on bad pothole/gravel backroads, otherwise probably 40% city/60% highway... Mostly going to-in-and-from Toronto. Over the last 3 months or so I am noticing a big degradation in ride quality.

I just switched to my winter set, which has much softer tires with more sidewall (17 vs 19) and the ride quality feels like I'm driving on bricks. It's to the point I think the lack of damping in the suspension is starting to make other bits of the car vibrate/sound like they're falling off. I can hear more bumps-squeaks-rattles creeping into the cabin.

I had the left-rear damper and mount replaced by dealership after noticing very apparent squeaking/creaking coming from rear suspension on front-to-rear weight transfer at low speeds. They inspected and found this shock was leaking, then noticed when they went to install that the mount for this corner was all rusted to hell and they replaced it too. This was around 77K. I asked them if any of the others need to be replaced at same time (most places I have read recommend), they said no, because car is under 100k the shocks should still have some good life left in them. So I have 3 corners with 85K, original OE, and one corner with around 8k or so, new OE.

I just took the car in for my regular service interval and they inspected the shocks and said that everything was fine; no leakage. I can tell you from my "butt sensor" that ride quality is very poor, though. Going over small imperfections in the road it feels like the car has zero damping at all -- you feel every little crack. I can also report that there are secondary vibrations (almost feels like reverberations) when going over certain bumps that just tend to upset the suspension at just the right force to cause it to keep micro-bumping even after the bump is gone.

Am I crazy? I've tried the "corner shake" shake test and they seem OK. Front seemed a bit easier to compress than rears. Could this be a tie-rod/bushing issue? How can I tell?
 

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Bounce each corner. If the dampening is shot it's instantly apparent. There's no reason to change perfectly good shocks or struts.

However, there are plenty of other components that can be worn out, particularly suspension bushings. Much depends on the roads you drive on and the sort of climate you drive in.
 

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Bounce each corner. If the dampening is shot it's instantly apparent. There's no reason to change perfectly good shocks or struts.

However, there are plenty of other components that can be worn out, particularly suspension bushings. Much depends on the roads you drive on and the sort of climate you drive in.
Thanks for the reply! I have gone back and checked again. The car does rock 2 or 3 more times when I give it a good bounce on the fronts. Rears seem a bit stiffer, but of course they have less weight over them.

The best way I can describe it is the car seems both floaty and stiff. Stiff over tiny bumps, floaty over big bumps. I've ordered a set of Bilstein B4s for all corners and new sway bar links while I'm in there. The next thing I want to replace would be bushings? And any other preventative maintenance pieces for the suspension. Ultimately I want to not worry about any suspension wear for another good 5 years if I can. How can I reliably check bushings and where is a good place to get replacements? I'm going to swap it all myself.
 

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Well, you gotta look...check tie rod ends and ball joints, to name two, and also the suspension bushings on the control arms. If you start taking things apart in the suspension you'll want to get an alignment when you're done, so do make an effort to replace everything at once.

MOST of the time if you just do struts (assuming you don't have to remove ball joints or similar to get them out and in) it doesn't hose the alignment, but replacing basically anything else WILL.
 
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