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I now have this rattling that happens when I go over bumps, almost like something is loose. Took it to a Saab mechanic and he said that it was the struts. I have never heard of struts making a rattling noise over bumps. He then proceeded to tell me that it would cost $900 for the front struts.

Does this sound right? Any suggestions what it might be?
 

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Ask them to be more specific about exactly what's wrong with the struts:
Worn strut mounts?
Broken strut mount bearings?
The struts themselves?

Any of these could cause the rattle, although it's probably the first two.

...and regardless of what's actually broken, you should replace the whole shebang (mounts, bearings, maybe struts) because the parts are relatively cheap. It's the labor that's the killer. Maybe that was the $900 quote.
 

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How many miles on the car?
 

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Does the car jounce couple of times when you hit a bump, or is it just the sound?
 

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Regardles, if he says 900 bucks for the parts only, then he is a crook. Be carefull with this guy. Go get a second opinion! The front suspension on the 900 is no special thing. Anybody can do a good job, its not a complicated setup.


Tboy
 

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My car is still rattling after I recently had my struts replaced. The car has 100k miles and the mech said the mounts and bearings looked fine. But now I'm not so sure. When does this rattle occur?

For me its whenever I turn the wheel, no matter what speed, and when I hit bumps with the wheel turned slightly to the right at most speeds. I'm starting to get a bit concerned, but the noise isn't getting louded and everything feels real tight.
 

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I have seen quite a few cars with the strut insert mounting nut ~2" that holds it to the upright loose. It can be snugged up with car together. With car on ground you can feel it by holding the spring while the steering is wiggled. Otherwise it is the upper mounts, possibly just the upper nut left a bit loose. Hard to tell though.
 

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I know you've got a nice diagram showing this nut somewhere Nick, right?

Odd to see you as a beginner, haha. What was wrong with the old user name?
 

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NickTaliaferro said:
I have seen quite a few cars with the strut insert mounting nut ~2" that holds it to the upright loose. It can be snugged up with car together. With car on ground you can feel it by holding the spring while the steering is wiggled. Otherwise it is the upper mounts, possibly just the upper nut left a bit loose. Hard to tell though.
Can this come loose over time, or with new struts not being tightened enough, or not using loctite on the nut...?

The other places I have been looking on my own car are the balljoints (found and replaced a torn rubber boot, but all is snug and tight in the joints), and the front ARB (don't know what to look for, what I can see looks fine)

My own symptom is an occasional " clunk" going over a bump at slow speed, especially in winter, as in speed bump in a parking lot... mounts and struts are original, 105k, no bounce or weakness in front, even after many trips on un-even roads, no obvious reason to replace the struts.
 

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I do not recall any front end rattle on the old VW Golf, even when the struts were "shot".

The inserts($30 to $50 @ JC Whitney) were good for about 50 to 75 K, the rubber and bearings good for less than 100K, and of course this varies.
About one hour to 90 minutes to change the insert for one side.. I am not fast...
The times should be about the same for a GM Saab, but the parts will cost more, even at eEuroParts

$900 is outrageous - time to find a more honest mechanic - a man willing to work efficiently..

Hard to say where the "rattle" source is.
At the 100K mile service all the suspension/frame bolts should be removed and treated against any rust(using grease?)..On a lift, with the proper equipment, this takes 20 minutes or so.
Some mechanics will even mark the screws with some paint.
Honda does this at the factory..

My Saab 900S has 145K, 9 years, nary a rattle, and no known repair history - wish I knew...
 

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that is a total rip off of a price, you could buy the entire eibach pro kit, springs and dampers, for 5-600 or koni for 750 and get them installed at a reputable indy and the total would be around $900-1000
 

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My sway bar links made a similar noise and they were replaced under warranty. Seemed to fix that problem.

I'm not active on Saab Network, somebody mind posting that diagram over here? It really would make sense to me now that this could have come loose after the install. I didn't do it right off, but now is. I've got some locktite and could give this a try probably.
 

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jrbrangi said:
that is a total rip off of a price, you could buy the entire eibach pro kit, springs and dampers, for 5-600 or koni for 750 and get them installed at a reputable indy and the total would be around $900-1000
Good point, my estimate was around $1k, for front AND back, using Boge parts (I think), with about 5-6 hrs of labor. Included replacing the balljoint boots and alignment. Not included strut mounts or bearings. I thought that was a bit high, because replacing one balljoint boot was $50, but now sounds like a bargain...

Fact remains, replacing struts because of a rattle, with no other symptoms, seems like throwing parts at what could be another problem completely...
 

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stromer said:
...somebody mind posting that diagram over here?
Someone just posted the entire page from EPC, not sure about reposting that 'cause I don't know if there is a copyright issue. Europarts has the same diagram.

The Haynes manual mentions tightening the sleeve nut in Chapter 10, section 2.21. Torque specs for front struts, from Haynes Ch. 10:

lower balljoint to hub carrier, 55 lb-ft
strut top mounting bolts, 13 lb-ft
shock absorber upper nut to strut mount, 66 lb-ft
shock absorber sleeve nut 159 lb-ft (!)
 

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thanks pmi, I'llhead over to eeuro
 

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Um, if anyone is charging you all $1000 for struts/shocks, I'd be glad to do it for.....$8-900!:lol:

Seriously, it's a pain but straightforward. I thought I was getting ripped off with the estimate I got of $630. I did it all myself for around $100 in tools plus the price of struts/shocks (approx $100 for all 4 total from tirerack.com). That was w/ KYB's. The strut mounts/thrust bearings aren't too bad from eeuro, either.
 
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