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    Thread: Seeking Front Strut Advice 1990 VW Fox Wagon

    1. Member
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      03-12-2019 03:10 PM #1
      Dear Friends,
      hope all is well...

      its been a horrible winter in Vermont and the roads are worst then ever. YOU need a mouth guard when your driving to prevent damage to your teeth and a possible neck brace.

      Seriously, WHAT is the best way to tell if the Front Struts are weak or going bad or have gone bad? I know this may seem routine to many of you, But I'd like some advice about this and WHAT to look for and how it might feel driving a Fox with weak struts. Possibly other parts of the "front end"

      It seems when I hit a small pot hole for example the tire seems to jump a bit for lack of a better term at this moment. Something just doesn't seem or feel right..Driving down a decent road or Interstate there isn't an issue everything seems tight. But, once there are pot holes or other such things and you happen to hit one of them the fun begins.

      Any suggestions or help very much appreciated.

      Sincerely, Raphael

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    3. Member matty kirk's Avatar
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      04-07-2019 11:09 PM #2
      If you visually inspect the shocks and they are leaking then that is a sure sign that replacement is required. Otherwise, the basic time/mileage recommendation for replacement is 60,000 miles. If you want you can also jounce the front or rear corners of the car and if it feels "loose" then that is another sign.

      Given that we are talking about a VW Fox I can pretty much guarantee that new shocks would be a good idea, as this is an item most people overlook, or do not want to pay for.
      Even a blind squirrel finds a nut in the dark, sometimes.

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      04-08-2019 02:46 AM #3
      Quote Originally Posted by matty kirk View Post
      If you visually inspect the shocks and they are leaking then that is a sure sign that replacement is required. Otherwise, the basic time/mileage recommendation for replacement is 60,000 miles. If you want you can also jounce the front or rear corners of the car and if it feels "loose" then that is another sign.

      Given that we are talking about a VW Fox I can pretty much guarantee that new shocks would be a good idea, as this is an item most people overlook, or do not want to pay for.
      Thank you!

      Could you also add a bit more about the driving qualities?

      How much could tires fit into this? I know I'll need to replace them before the next inspection in August.

      I haven't ever had to replace the front struts on these wagons.

      Thanks again.

      Best, Raphael

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    6. Member matty kirk's Avatar
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      04-08-2019 09:48 AM #4
      I'm not aware of any driving tests that can be performed on shocks. If you here noise from the front end when turning, or over bumps then that is indicative of worn front suspension components, and should be addressed. Often shock absorbers wear slowly so that the driver does not notice the diminishing performance, and it is only after new shocks are installed that a sudden difference is noticed.

      The only affect tires should have is on cornering, as a higher sidewall will flex more when loaded laterally, as when cornering.

      Unfortunately, I don't have any Fox specific advice as I haven't owned one since 2004. Good luck.
      Even a blind squirrel finds a nut in the dark, sometimes.

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      04-08-2019 11:16 AM #5
      Thank You!

      As I stated:"WHAT to look for and how it might feel driving a Fox with weak struts. Possibly other parts of the "front end"

      It seems when I hit a small pot hole for example the tire seems to jump a bit for lack of a better term.



    8. Member bluetoes591's Avatar
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      04-10-2019 12:47 AM #6
      What happens if you walk up to the car and bounce one of the front corners? Put all your weight into it. Not sure if that is within your physical abilities or not, but it's very educational. Struts fail one of two ways, either the front of the car will bounce more than once or the struts will be super stiff and not move. Good struts will allow the car to go down and come up with no extra motions.

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      04-10-2019 02:28 AM #7
      Quote Originally Posted by bluetoes591 View Post
      What happens if you walk up to the car and bounce one of the front corners? Put all your weight into it. Not sure if that is within your physical abilities or not, but it's very educational. Struts fail one of two ways, either the front of the car will bounce more than once or the struts will be super stiff and not move. Good struts will allow the car to go down and come up with no extra motions.
      Thank YOU!
      I'll give it try..weather/temps must play somewhat of a role in this.
      Report back here as soon as I get a chance to test the Fox.
      I'll note the temps as well.

      Best to you...
      Raphael

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