[s-cars] Replacing struts...

Gabriel Caldwell gabriel at ts.bc.ca
Tue Feb 3 13:41:04 EST 2004

Replace bushings only, if arm is not damaged.

Gabriel Caldwell
Tsunami Solutions Ltd.
#202 - 2055 Boundary Road
Vancouver, BC Canada V5M 3Z1
voice: 604.299.5855
fax: 604.648.8158
e-mail: gabriel at ts.bc.ca
url: www.tsunamisolutionsltd.com

-----Original Message-----
From: Bill de Alva [mailto:billdealva at yahoo.com] 
Sent: February 3, 2004 10:10 AM
To: s-car-list at audifans.com
Subject: RE: [s-cars] Replacing struts...

Thanks for the feedback.  The bushing that needs to be replaced is in
the lower control arm at the connection to the frame.  Apparently, it is
possible to replace just the bushings (around $40 ea.) as opposed to the
entire control arm (around $200 ea.).  I was told by an Audi mechanic
that the ball joints on the other end of the control arm usually need to
be replaced when the bushings at the frame go.  I assume there are other
parts relating to the ball joint that should be replaced if that is the
case.  I do not detect any play at the ball joints when I jerk on the
control arm.
Given the considerable difference in cost between replacing just the
bushings vs. the entire arm, I would appreciate comments from others
experienced with this repair.  I am about 200 miles from the nearest
shop that I would trust with the alignment.  The right bushing is bad
enough that I do not relish the prospect of driving the car that
distance for the repair.  I would like to replace the bushings and/or
control arms myself then drive the car to the shop for the alignment.
Looks like a simple job...  I would appreciate hearing from anyone who
knows different.
Bill de Alva
1995 S6

Sean Douglas <quattro20v at telus.net> wrote:

I had this same problem about a month ago. A clunk from the left side,
esp when turning and hitting a bump. It turned out to be the lower
control arm or track arm or tie rod as you call it. The new track arm
comes with the rubber bushing bonded in and you should also replace the
bolt, washer and sleeve too. Its also a good idea to replace the rubber
bushings and hardware where the stabilizer bar mounts into the track

I had this done under warranty so I can't help you with a cost estimate.


Sean Douglas
1997 Audi S6 - MTM Stage 1+
1990 Audi 90Q20V

> -----Original Message-----
> From: s-car-list-bounces at audifans.com 
> [mailto:s-car-list-bounces at audifans.com] On Behalf Of Bill de Alva
> Sent: Thursday, January 29, 2004 11:08 PM
> To: s-car-list at audifans.com
> Cc: Djdawson2 at aol.com
> Subject: [s-cars] Replacing struts...
> Thanks for the helpful feedback. I spoke with a service rep 
> at Elk Mountain Motors, an Audi dealer in Glennwood Springs, 
> CO. The service rep advised that, based on my description of 
> the clunking noises, he thought the problem was more likely a 
> tie arm or other suspension connection. He stated that the 
> struts almost never go bad (???). I pulled my front wheels 
> and indeed, it appears the rubber bushing on my right tie rod 
> is shot: 
> http://volcano.photobucket.com/albums/v11/tachyon/Audi/Dscn2445.jpg
> I assume one has to replace the entire tie rod as the rubber 
> bushing appears to be cast into the rod. I also assume I 
> will need an alignment after replacing the tie rod.
> The other suspension joints look ok: 
> http://volcano.photobucket.com/albums/v11/tachyon/Audi/Dscn2446.jpg
> http://volcano.photobucket.com/albums/v11/tachyon/Audi/Dscn2448.jpg
> The tie rod on the left looks pretty good except for a small 
> crack in the rubber. I assume I should start with 
> replacement of both tie rods and a wheel alignment and then 
> see if the clunking noises are gone.
> Any further suggestions will be greatly appreciated.
> Thanks.
> Djdawson2 at aol.com wrote:
> In a message dated 1/27/04 8:01:18 PM Mountain Standard Time, 
> billdealva at yahoo.com writes:
> I am in need of new struts for my 95 S6 with 93,000 miles and 
> would appreciate some guidance.
> 1) Are any specialized tools required to replace the struts 
> and is it a reasonable undertaking for a moderately 
> experience home mechanic?
> Really pretty easy. No special tools required.
> 2) Should all four struts be replaced at once (or is it 
> unreasonable to replace just the front struts)?
> It would be reasonable to do just the fronts IMO, if that's 
> what you want to do.
> 3) Should I plan on replacing the upper strut bearings along 
> with the struts?
> Unlikely, IMO.
> 4) What other parts should I plan on replacing along with the struts?
> Struts alone would be fine.
> 5) What are the best struts for the 95 S6 and what are some 
> good sources? I have a quote from Shox.com for Bilstein OE 
> sport suspension struts (rear shaft 12mm) at $449 in sets of 
> four (not sure whether the price is for one or for all four).
> Bilsteins are nice. I use Konis and like them as well. That 
> price would be for all 4, and shox.com is about as good of a 
> price as you will find.
> 6) Approximate how much should I expect to pay a dealer for 
> the complete job?
> I have no guess. More than the struts, probably.
> Good luck, and HTH,
> Dave in CO
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