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suspension inspection[240-260/'79] posted by Brian McCallum on
Saturday, 2 May 1998, at 1:38 a.m.
I recently took my '79 245dl in for a new set of tires and asked the mechanic to check my suspension before aligning it because I have noticed a slight dip in the left rear when she's parked. The suspension is pretty bouncy and tight but seems a little 'soft' when I manually push down on the rear. Anyway, the tire center recomended replacing the entire suspension including springs. Go figure. Now this car has got 118K mostly around town. I've read on the board that Volvo suspensions are sturdy, and to tell you the truth I can pretty much fly over tremendous dips at breakneck speeds and not bottom out.Yet I wonder, is it time for new struts and shocks? are Volvo replacements the proper choice? Is there any other standard maintenence on 245 suspensions that I should be doing as preventative maintenance? thanks alot.--
Re: suspension inspection[240-260/'79] posted by Steve Seekins on
Monday, 4 May 1998, at 10:36 a.m.
OEM Volvo shocks only last 30K to 40K. The front strut cartridges will last a little longer, but if these are your originals at 118K, then they are overdue! I recommend replacing with a good gas loaded aftermarket like a KYB Gas-A-Just or a Boge Pro Gas. On the 240, be sure to inspect the lower spring seats on the front struts for signs of rust and carefully clean out the drain hole so they don't collect water.
The rear suspension bushings on the 240 usualy require replacement at about 75K miles - particularly the torque rod bushings and the rear trailing arm bushings. The bushings at the forward end of the trailing arms seem to last a long time and do not need replacement as often.
The rear springs are relatively easy to remove without a spring compressor, so if you are rebuilding or haveing the rear suspension rebuilt (new bushings), pull the springs and measure their free (unloaded) height. Any difference greater than 1/8" or so indicates one has sagged and they should be replaced. Of course, to really check them, they must have heights measured at various compression forces, but as mentioned, if you have not been carrying huge loads in the trunk for the past coulple of years, they probably have not sagged.