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post #1 of (permalink) Old 01-02-2004, 10:10 AM Thread Starter
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OT- Ford Taurus Strut Question

FOund out that our 97 Taurus needs struts. Local place said about 800 bucks for the 2 struts plus some top plates. 2oo for each strut plus 200 for these plates each. I think that price is rediculous. Does anyone know what this top plate/bearing thing is? I have priced the struts around the net and they are closer to 100 than 200 but havn't seen anything about the plate. Any insight on the struts install would be appreciated. I have never done then but figure I will probably try. TIA. Jim
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post #2 of (permalink) Old 01-02-2004, 10:20 AM
 
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Re: OT- Ford Taurus Strut Question

It's probably the caster/camber alignment plate, what they use to dial in the alignment. No clue if they go bad or the shop is just trying to rape you. I would find the struts myself, replace them and then go have the car aligned. If they can great, if not then you know the plates need replacing
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post #3 of (permalink) Old 01-02-2004, 11:37 AM
 
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Re: OT- Ford Taurus Strut Question

prices range from $64.99 to $85.49 each for the front struts and $51.99 to $85.49 for the rear ones at Advance Auto according to thier website. sonds like the shop is trying to get one over on you. do em yourself and them take it to be aligned.
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post #4 of (permalink) Old 01-02-2004, 03:43 PM Thread Starter
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Re: OT- Ford Taurus Strut Question

Went and talked to the shop and he said the plate is actually the top mount for the strut. It is the piece under the hood of the car. I guess there is a bearing in there so the strut assembly can rotate when you turn and the bearing goes. Still doesn't explain the 200 strut though. Jim
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post #5 of (permalink) Old 01-02-2004, 09:57 PM
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Re: OT- Ford Taurus Strut Question

He is giving you the straight retail price from his parts supplier , this is how they make up the difference in shop rates vs actual time worked and overhead . The strut and bearing plate aren't cheap , but not all that bad . If you know how to compress the spring and have a quality compressor, go for it as far as doing it yourself . If not or you don't have the equipment , try another shop for a better price . Don't mess around with those springs , folks get killed for stupid mistakes with them every day , even qualified and experienced mechanics . In the future, avoid rough roads and keep the underside clean, that's what destroys struts and the bearing plates , lol . No offense, you didn't mention mileage on the car but for a '97 I think it's rediculous they have to be changed already .
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post #6 of (permalink) Old 01-03-2004, 08:07 AM
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Re: OT- Ford Taurus Strut Question

some auto parts stores have the fancy machine that compresses the spring. When I had to do the struts on my Maxima they did it for free since I bought them there (I think it was Pep Boys). All I had to do was remove/replace the assembly.
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post #7 of (permalink) Old 01-03-2004, 08:28 AM
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Re: OT- Ford Taurus Strut Question

Also dont forget that it will need aligned after the struts are replaced. Add that into the cost and you will find $800 is closer than you think. I have had customers request that we dont do the bearing plates or align thinking it would save money, but it always ends up the same-they are unhappy with the job! You can replace them yourself IF you have a shop compress the springs for you. Like was mentioned earlier, those springs pack a lot of punch! I have seen one go thru a cinder block wall before!
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post #8 of (permalink) Old 01-03-2004, 08:53 AM
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Re: OT- Ford Taurus Strut Question

</font><blockquote><font class="small">In reply to:</font><hr />
Also dont forget that it will need aligned after the struts are replaced. Add that into the cost and you will find $800 is closer than you think.

[/ QUOTE ]

I disagree... That price sounds way off base. Two struts and the top bearing plates plus an allignment should be around half of that price or less. I think you could be out the door for $300 and change.

Compressing springs is fairly easy depending on the type of strut. If it is how Randy describes where the whole unit can be taken apart (I'm not familiar with a Taurus suspension) it's a two hour job and it is easy to compress the spring outside the vehicle. Vehicles where the spring has to be compressed inside the vehicle, which I am doubting you have, are more time consuming if you've never done it before.

By no means would I pay $800 (which turns into a g-note at most shops) for a job that is relatively simple.
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post #9 of (permalink) Old 01-03-2004, 09:25 AM
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Re: OT- Ford Taurus Strut Question

shop work is usually OUTRAGEOUS. They can charge whatever they want because if you dont agree with the price the next guy will. These places are always busy. My boss just paid $3500 to have the transmission in his Explorer replaced with a rebuilt one and last year paid $1200 for a complete brake job. He just went in with his tie on (makes him look like he has $$) and said "just change whatever you think it needs", big mistake! Yea, he is kinda clueless. The best is when he came in after getting his Ranger fixed a few years ago and paid like $400 to get his 'anti slosh module' replaced that was causing his fuel gauge to not work. He even had the faulty part, it looked like it was from an old VCR. One of the only time I brought one of my vehicles to a garage for some work was when I first got my sami. It needed a clutch and I was working 7 days a week then. It was either lose a day of double time and lay in my driveway in the middle of winter or have it done and use the double time to pay for it. I brought them the parts and they still charged me $400! The centerforce clutch kit cost me $300, thats $700 for a clutch job on a sami. They told me how difficult it was because it was a 4-wheel drive and it took his best guy all day to get it done. What a bunch of BS, with a lift and some air tools it probably took him 1.5-2 hours at most. Oh well, enough rambling, Jim, find out whats involved, you might be able to save some money that you can spend on #2
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post #10 of (permalink) Old 01-03-2004, 09:37 AM Thread Starter
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Re: OT- Ford Taurus Strut Question

A buddy of mine at work is also a mechanic and I think he has the tool that I would need. I believe Autozone also loans one. The car just turned 70K this past week. I thought it was a little premature too(our 85 Subaru with 160K still has original struts) but I don't know how to check them. The shop I took it to is usually pretty honest but the parts prices are real high there. Thanks all for the help. Jim
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