Last post on Dec 09, 2011 at 12:11 PM
You are in the Chrysler Town & Country/Dodge Grand Caravan
What is this discussion about?
Chrysler Town and Country, Towing, Van
#1 of 3 Do I need nivomats?? T&C 98 Lxi
Aug 29, 2011 (3:01 pm)
Got talked into an alignment at [national chain beginning w/ letter S] and since I never remembered changing the shocks & struts I figured what the heck. ( the shocks were like $35) I checked with another national chain and they were saying hundreds cause the 4 wheel drive T&C LXi needed self leveling shocks.
So after having the job done- the first time we had passengers in the
back the shocks were bottoming out with a terrible bang like they put in broken shocks...
Checked underneath and they were new. Took it back to chain- and they figured the shocks might be defective and they changed them- but to the same unacceptable results (even to them). They said all they could think was that the shocks were actually supposed to be nivomat self leveling shocks- which they don't carry.
So how can I tell if the car needs these- the chain threw the originals away- and who knows if they recognized the nivomats. I called the local Chrysler dealer and they haven't returned my call.
What shocks are cost effective for a car that I put maybe 900 miles/year? Mostly trips to lumber yard... there is a tow bar on the car and i guess towing would be nice once in a blue moon.
#2 of 3 Re: Do I need nivomats?? T&C 98 Lxi [in2explore]
Oct 23, 2011 (2:36 pm)
So, I see no one has replied to your message and now it's over 2 months old. As it happens, I'm right in the middle of changing my rear shocks on my 2001 Town and Country, and have tripped over the very same issues you mentioned. Spent the afternoon trying to figure out what's going on, and think I have an answer to your question!
My particular model of T&C (your too) shipped with load-leveling shocks called Nivomats. The advantage over regular shocks is that that automatically load-level, and since mini-vans are family pack animals, the ability to adjust 1-7 passengers, groceries, boats, etc. and level the load automatically while keeping the ride smooth is pretty cool. But they don't appear to be just regular shocks on steroids. I've noticed that my rear-springs only have a single leaf. Unlike my truck which has 5 leaves strapped together. So these shocks are doing more than merely "dampening" road shock. They are an integral part of the suspension system. That's why "normal" shocks on your van are so terrible. Look under rear wheels: do you have a single leaf spring, or a multiple leaves strapped together. I'm guessing you only have one. So you'll need to replace the Nivmat's with new ones. And that's my plan too.
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Dec 09, 2011 (12:11 pm)
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