[s-cars] Odd suspension behavior

Stott Hare stott at gwi.net
Wed Mar 12 10:38:15 PDT 2008

My front Bilstein inserts would ingest enough water/leak enough oil whatever
into the strut housing each winter that they would freeze up, giving teeth
jarring pothole impacts until the fluid in the strut melted/slushed up.

After my second annual warranty swap and complaining to Bilstein tech, they
suggested drilling a small hole in the bottom of the strut housing to allow
any ingested/leaked fluids to drain out.  When I removed the dead inserts to
return for warranty, I did have a significant amount of fluid pour out of
the strut housing.

Not sure if yours is a similar issue, and it happening when warm not cold
doesn't seem to jive, but another data point for you to consider.  Failing
upper strut bearing?


-----Original Message-----
From: s-car-list-bounces at audifans.com
[mailto:s-car-list-bounces at audifans.com] On Behalf Of yo-cello at comcast.net
Sent: Wednesday, March 12, 2008 12:10 PM
To: s-car-list at audifans.com
Subject: [s-cars] Odd suspension behaviour

Well, the pot holes are exceptionally bad this year in northern VT.   As a
result I'm experiencing some pretty jarring behaviour with my front

The victim, a 95.5 S6 avant, does have Bilstein Sports and H&R springs.
Stiff enough to begin with.

What I'm experiencing is a clunk in the LF suspension. It can be heard, but
also felt through the dead pedal. Not only going over rough spots on the
road, but also when turning.  Pulled the car into the garage and everything
appears to be in good shape, and tight.  Control arm bushings and ball
joints look good.  The last time I experienced this, it was the the strut
cap that attaches strut insert to the strut itself had come loose (the one
that's supplied with the bilsteins).  Not the case here, it's good and
tight. Next thought was the snapped spring issue I've been reading about
with the H&R's.  They're fine too.

Now here's the weird thing.  It was around 40 degrees when I first
experienced this.  Monday and yesterday it was significantly colder (between
0-20 degrees), and the car rides fine!  Now again this morning at 30 degrees
it's back.  WTF?  Any ideas - could this be a bad shock and would the
failure be temperature sensitive?

Any insight would be appreciated!

95.5 S6A
99 A6A
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