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2004 Front and Rear Struts---DIY

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Old 07-10-12, 03:50 PM   #16
wholeinone
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I'm probably going to take this to a mechanic to get the work done. How do I check if I need rear, front or both? My car is definitely bouncy, and I plan on doing the bumper test later.

Will I need an alignment afterwards?
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Old 07-10-12, 04:42 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by wholeinone View Post
I'm probably going to take this to a mechanic to get the work done. How do I check if I need rear, front or both? My car is definitely bouncy, and I plan on doing the bumper test later.

Will I need an alignment afterwards?
An alignment will be needed post replacement if you notice any pull to one side or the other while driving. Now in some cases, your toe in or out, and your camber in and out can be effected as well which isn't always noticable while driving. I say if you haven't had an alignment in 50 - 75 K, replace the struts and get one any ways.

Do the bounce test and see what you discover. If you notice oil around the shock that is another sign the struts are leaking.
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Old 07-20-12, 04:23 PM   #18
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Tire rack is running a special on rear KYB struts = $97 and $87 for each strut. Regularly they are $112 each!
I've got a quote from Tire Rack for a set of rear struts, boots and mounts $302 (+ shipping).
Is it reasonable, or will I get a better deal at Sewel? I'm not sure how to log in on their site.
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Old 07-20-12, 05:08 PM   #19
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Originally Posted by RockfordRX View Post
Tire rack is running a special on rear KYB struts = $97 and $87 for each strut. Regularly they are $112 each!
I've got a quote from Tire Rack for a set of rear struts, boots and mounts $302 (+ shipping).
Is it reasonable, or will I get a better deal at Sewel? I'm not sure how to log in on their site.
$237 each for the front (#48510 RH, #48520 LH)
$263 each for the rear(#48530 RH, #48540 LH) + shipping
As a clublexus member there is a discount, don't know how much it is though.

I'd say that's a great price from tirerack.
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Old 07-21-12, 10:27 AM   #20
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Thanks so much, Cartman!
That's what Lexus parts dept. quoted me as well.
I'm going with TireRack!
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Old 08-05-12, 03:04 PM   #21
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Smile Got new struts for the rear

So I finally got to my project this weekend.
I've ordered a set of KYB struts for the rear and a set of KYB strut boots ($25 for both) from Tire Rack, since the original ones were torn and looked like a bunch of onion rings resting on the bottom of the spring holder.
I've spent total of $251 for the parts and shipping (Lexus parts dept wanted $249 for just one strut!).
All went well, except the original strut mount came with the rubber boot attached to it making it one sealed and smooth piece (Monroe style), however the KYB boot looked nothing like the Monroe one: it was made out of plastic and did not fit the original strut mount at all! Hmmmm....
So my dilemma was to get a KYB srtut mount to accomodate for the new boot, or to buy a Monroe strut mount that came with the boot. It was Saturday night and Tire rack reps were gone til Monday, the RX was sitting in the garage jacked up in the air and with no wheels/struts!, so I went to Advanced Autoparts (had KYB mounts available but as a special order item for $52 and wouldn't arrive til Tuesday), then, I went to Autozone and they didn't have any available to order. Oriley's autoparts hooked me up - they had Monroe mounts in stock - $34.99 each. So it turned out to be cheaper and a better quality and original look than KYB ones.
I got home late and started installing the struts and mounts the next morning. I've rented a spring compressor from Advanced Autoparts and got a Haynes manual from the local library (all free!)
So, my rear strut replacement DIY cost me only $300 and about 6 hours of my time (including a 2 hour shopping for strut mounts/boots).
I would say it was as easy as the break job I did last month (rotors and pads), also ordered from Tire Rack.
Word of advice, if you buy KYB struts and KYB boots, go ahead and order a KYB strut mount. Actually you can go with any brand strut. My KYB struts are oil pressurized with gas, but the box stated gas struts, so don't let that throw you off, they are OEM.
If you want to keep it completely factory, you can go with Monroe ones with Monroe mounts/boots. KYB setup is 3 pieces and Monroe is 2 - pick your poison.
KYB boots come with a new damper/bumper thingy, and Monroe didn't, so I reused the original dampers (they had no signs of wear).

I will be replacing my front ones next year.

Overall, it was a nice DIY that can be done in a day, and I would recommend it to a friend (especially if his/her RX is bouncing on the road)

My question is: Do I need to do allignment with the rear struts replaced, or should I wait till I do the fronts?

Last edited by RockfordRX; 08-05-12 at 03:36 PM..
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Old 08-05-12, 03:36 PM   #22
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Good job
Replaced the struts yourself, saved a lot of $$ by not using a service department.
Ride more comfortable now?
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Old 08-06-12, 08:57 AM   #23
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I signed up as a forum user yesterday and i have a question about struts for a 1999 RX-300. I've done a search and haven't found anything yet pertaining to my issue. But I can't find any button that allows me to post a new thread. Where is it on the screen??? Or do you have to be a premium member to start a new thread?

Any help on this would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks!

John
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Old 08-06-12, 09:07 AM   #24
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I signed up as a forum user yesterday and i have a question about struts for a 1999 RX-300. I've done a search and haven't found anything yet pertaining to my issue. But I can't find any button that allows me to post a new thread. Where is it on the screen??? Or do you have to be a premium member to start a new thread?

Any help on this would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks!

John
Welcome!!
In the first generation section, look near the top left side of the threads in forum section, there will be a 'new thread' (it's there, just need to carefully look for it). I'm sure there's been a lot of topics covered for it in the search function as well.
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Old 08-06-12, 09:44 AM   #25
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RockfordRX,,

THANK YOU, THANK YOU..... That is the info I have been waiting for........ You did a wonderful job explaining what you went through..... NOW we can all prepare better...... Thanks for taking the time to write it in such a complete explanation.. We ALL understand when you start a NEW Challenge there are unknowns.... You have helped conquer some of those Speed Bumps..... I haven't tackled it yet

I would make sure are tires are properly aired and drive on a smooth Flat, road and see if it pulls (or pulls differently) and IF it doesn't then I would wait to do the alignment after the fronts are completed.
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Old 08-06-12, 06:09 PM   #26
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RockfordRX,,

THANK YOU, THANK YOU..... That is the info I have been waiting for........ You did a wonderful job explaining what you went through..... NOW we can all prepare better...... Thanks for taking the time to write it in such a complete explanation.. We ALL understand when you start a NEW Challenge there are unknowns.... You have helped conquer some of those Speed Bumps..... I haven't tackled it yet

I would make sure are tires are properly aired and drive on a smooth Flat, road and see if it pulls (or pulls differently) and IF it doesn't then I would wait to do the alignment after the fronts are completed.
Thanks, Rabjr!
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Old 08-06-12, 06:12 PM   #27
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Good job
Replaced the struts yourself, saved a lot of $$ by not using a service department.
Ride more comfortable now?
Thanks, Cartman57,

I found the ride to be more precise now, the rear is not bouncing at all (my left rear strut was so gone, it was not holding any pressure, so the right rear did all the work!). It actually is quite stiff if not sporty, but not nearly as stiff as compared to my 06 CRV, which is 400lbs lighter of course! Just perfect!

I bet once I change the fronts it will feel like I'm in X5!
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Old 08-07-12, 02:52 PM   #28
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Originally Posted by RockfordRX View Post
Thanks, Cartman57,

I found the ride to be more precise now, the rear is not bouncing at all (my left rear strut was so gone, it was not holding any pressure, so the right rear did all the work!). It actually is quite stiff if not sporty, but not nearly as stiff as compared to my 06 CRV, which is 400lbs lighter of course! Just perfect!

I bet once I change the fronts it will feel like I'm in X5!
rockford-yes you need an alignment too if its pulling. From what i heard, firestone still have lifetime alignment if you go through them. Great job, wish i was you..

Last edited by StLucchese; 08-07-12 at 02:55 PM..
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Old 08-07-12, 03:18 PM   #29
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rockford-yes you need an alignment too if its pulling. From what i heard, firestone still have lifetime alignment if you go through them. Great job, wish i was you..
Firestone Complete Auto Care, much like many of the large chain repair shops, has multiple levels of alignments available. In addition to just performing a front or rear alignment, they have one off and lifetime alignments. You pay more for the lifetime, however, it is truly good as long as you own the vehicle. Not transferrable.

I bought a lifetime alignment when I had my Bridgestone Alenzas installed and get my alignment checked at least once a year and always after I return from any trips to PA where the roads are atrocious.
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Old 08-07-12, 05:45 PM   #30
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rockford-yes you need an alignment too if its pulling. From what i heard, firestone still have lifetime alignment if you go through them. Great job, wish i was you..
Thanks, StLucchese!
I haven't noticed any pulling yet. Will keep my fingers crossed not to wear out the rear tires while I'm waiting to do an alignment.

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Firestone Complete Auto Care, much like many of the large chain repair shops, has multiple levels of alignments available. In addition to just performing a front or rear alignment, they have one off and lifetime alignments. You pay more for the lifetime, however, it is truly good as long as you own the vehicle. Not transferrable.

I bought a lifetime alignment when I had my Bridgestone Alenzas installed and get my alignment checked at least once a year and always after I return from any trips to PA where the roads are atrocious.
RX330inFL, thanks to you as well.
Interestingly enough, I went to Firestone website and tried to get a vehicle-specific quote, but it said I need to call the shop to get the details. When I put in my 06 CRV, they instantly quoted me $79.99 for a one time deal and $169.99 for a lifetime deal. I'm assuming this is for a 4-wheel alignment?

The new tires were installed and 4-wheel alignment was done 3 months (2,000miles) ago. It would be a waste to do another alignment if the car still drives straight and the tires have no excessive wear, would you all agree?

Last edited by RockfordRX; 08-07-12 at 05:58 PM..
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Old 08-07-12, 05:45 PM
 
 
 
 
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