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Toyota Avalon, Suspension, Sedan
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#161 of 203 Avalon 2002 suspension
Sep 04, 2010 (7:31 am)
Hi, I have a 2002 Avalon with 165k miles. The drive is pretty poor, I feel all the bums and cars seems to dip forward when pressing the brakes. From what I gathered, I need to change the struts (likely the original parts, never changed). I have an appointment to take it to a local Toyota deal but would also like to get a better understanding of the various parts involved here that could require changing and also what are the likely parts that would may need to be changed. Also should I consider getting original toyota parts or would after-market parts (which one?) be good given the age/millage of the car? One deal told me over the phone that front struts are 140 and 200 for the back - $700 for parts and about 600 for labor. That sounds high.
#162 of 203 Re: Avalon 2002 suspension [mohsinny]
by MrShift@Edmunds HOST
Sep 04, 2010 (8:42 am)
You can use aftermarket parts like KYB or even Bilstein if you want a really great shock/strut, and you don't have to go to a dealer for installation. I'd stay away from chain stores though---try a good independent shop that works on Japanese cars.
Your struts are LONG LONG overdue for replacement. Along with the struts, you should inspect, and possibly replace, the strut MOUNTS--which are steel + rubber mounting points for front and rear suspension. These rubber mounts flex and give the suspension some "give" against various stresses and forces. Over time these rubber mounts can tear. So if they don't look good, now's the time to replace them as well, along with the strut.
Then you will also need alignment, which might be another $80 bucks or so.
Yes, a complete strut + mount replacement is expensive, but you've let it go far too long, so in terms of mileage, you've come a long way. You are certainly going to notice the difference.
Labor to replace struts should be about 5 hours total. Parts cost can vary considerably depending on the quality of the parts you choose.
Sounds like your labor quote is about right but the parts do sound a bit high. I don't see you getting away with less than $1000 bucks no matter how you cut it, if you have the work done competently and you use quality parts.
#163 of 203 Re: Avalon 2002 suspension [mohsinny]
Sep 04, 2010 (10:34 am)
I would go aftermarket for superior struts. I still have my OEM struts with 50k miles in the KYB boxes and would let them go for $50 if anyone needs a cheap update, but the labor is a big part of it. Set up a search in ebay and wait for them to come to you, or use Google Product Search. For more details, search these forums for abfish and 55396 in this and the 04 and earlier forum. That should give you the details you need. Energy poly performance bushings for sway bars etc. are a very inexpensive upgrade and made a world of difference on ours. The downside is that you may have to relube every couple of years. Or, possibly install grease zerks in the retaining brackets and a grease hole in the bushing. I have gotten by by just spraying the sway bar next to the bushing if I hear any squeaking.
#164 of 203 Re: Avalon 2002 suspension [Mr_Shiftright]
Sep 07, 2010 (1:12 pm)
So I went to Pepboys Auto and they recommend I get Monroe Sensa Trac Strut over KYB. Beside the struts, they also said I need to replace both control arms. Which one is better?
#165 of 203 Re: Avalon 2002 suspension [mohsinny]
by MrShift@Edmunds HOST
Sep 07, 2010 (1:42 pm)
Well my impression is that the Monroes would be softer and the KYB firmer. As for the control arms I'd ask them to show you what they are talking about. You'd be looking for badly deteriorated rubber bushings in the control arms. If they are just a little squishy or have very light cracking, that might not require replacement. They could be over-selling you a bit here, I don't know. I'm always a bit leery of chain store operations.
#166 of 203 Re: Avalon 2002 suspension [mohsinny]
Sep 07, 2010 (1:46 pm)
Also which control arms should I get? Would have a part #? Pepboys didnt provide this info (they did for the rest of the parts...).
#167 of 203 Re: Avalon 2002 suspension [Mr_Shiftright]
Sep 07, 2010 (1:52 pm)
yeah, I'm not convinced the control arm needs to be changed - will get a second opinion but he basically showed me that the control arm moves but did not show any deteriorated rubber bushings in the control arms.
#168 of 203 Re: Avalon 2002 suspension [mohsinny]
by MrShift@Edmunds HOST
Sep 07, 2010 (2:14 pm)
Do you have any noise over bumps or unusual tire wear, or shimmy at speeds, etc. ?
#169 of 203 2000 Avalon rear suspension issue
Apr 14, 2011 (9:56 am)
My ride ( 2000 Avalon XLS ) recently caused 124K miles and I am getting signs that time has come for a suspension job. I used to hear a funny sound ( similar to an empty plastic can bouncing around in the trunk) from the driver side rear area while going over a bad patch on the road since almost 20K miles now and I got used to it and decided to live with it till the time I noticed uneven wear for the driver side rear tire last week ( the outside edge shows more wear than the inside one only for this tire). I have occassionaly also noticed the vehicle pulling to the left at times despite of a wheel alignment job last year.
I read some of the posts on this forum and am confused on what parts ( struts / strut mounts / bushings / sway bars, etc) need to be replaced.
Would like to know what my options are - whether to go for aftermarket parts ? whether only the driver side can be replaced or do I need to replace both the rear struts ? How much it approximately cost me ?
Any inputs would be appreciated.
#170 of 203 Re: 2000 Avalon rear suspension issue [njavalonguy]
Apr 14, 2011 (10:15 am)
Look in 'Toyota Avalon 2004 and earlier' also. Search 55396 or ABfisch.