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Old 12-03-2013, 10:12 PM   #1
PWGuy
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Question Replace original springs when doing struts/shocks?

I have an '03 ZTS on the original suspension. I just replaced the front sway bar links with Moog parts. Shocks/struts are next. I've read a lot of threads about broken springs and Ford's TSB (10-year/100k miles). I just looked at all of mine and the springs are fine, which aligns with the fact the car doesn't sag! But when I go to replace front struts/rear shocks, would I be wise to put in new springs? I'd prefer not to if I don't need to…

If I end up replacing the springs, are aftermarket as good as OEM for coil spring replacements?


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Old 12-03-2013, 10:39 PM   #2
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I would say no need. just inspect them make sure they are clean and mostly rust free.

If you do need springs go look in the for sale section and there should be stock springs up for sale quite a bit for people going aftermarket.

as for OEM aftermarket, not sure.
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Old 12-04-2013, 07:21 AM   #3
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Living in a rust state, I replace the struts as complete assemblies, springs and all. I did reuse the springs once on my old car when I was hard up for money, but as a matter of risk management, I usually replace everything. Collapsed springs can tear through your sidewall.

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Old 12-04-2013, 08:40 AM   #4
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You only need to replace the springs if they are no longer solid, they will not wear out like a shock/strut does. I'm on my third set of springs and the first two only had what I would call cosmetic issues

Although, as highball suggested, replacing the fronts as complete assemblies would save you time on installation and you wont have to deal with a spring compressor there.
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Old 12-04-2013, 09:40 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rambleon84 View Post
You only need to replace the springs if they are no longer solid, they will not wear out like a shock/strut does. I'm on my third set of springs and the first two only had what I would call cosmetic issues

Although, as highball suggested, replacing the fronts as complete assemblies would save you time on installation and you wont have to deal with a spring compressor there.
And...you can get a complete, bolt on, SVT suspension, with the aforementioned strut assemblies, for less than $300. Matched springs and dampers are the best way to go, and you will love the improved handling. I had the SVT suspension on my '05 ZX4 (ST) and thought it the best mod for a daily driver
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Old 12-04-2013, 10:08 AM   #6
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Moved to: Brakes, Suspension & Chassis
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Old 12-07-2013, 03:23 AM   #7
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Did the same "mod" as mainest did, very happy with the results.

Kit with complete front struts, rear springs & shocks was my choice. A bit lower & stiffer, handles better, still quite comfortable. At the time I did it, I compared the ride to the Wife's Stock '08 Civic - Focus still felt better over sharp bumps even when lower/stiffer than stock.
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Old 12-07-2013, 08:53 AM   #8
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'eh, I honestly don't want ANY stiffer.
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Old 12-07-2013, 02:07 PM   #9
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in that case, the Monroe "QuickStrut" will retain your OEM feel. Shop around for sales at the major chains; I bought a pair here in northern Illinois for around $250 a couple of years ago. (All of the stores emailed discount coupons around Thanksgiving; they'll probably do it again around Xmas & New Years if you wanna wait that long.)

P.S. alot of us with old rustbelt Focii had trouble removing one/both struts from the steering knuckle. Soak that baby in penetrating oil (as well as the pinch bolt) for a couple of days prior to doing the job (being careful, of course, to keep overspray off of all brake parts).
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Old 12-08-2013, 03:54 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by my_beautious_ZX3 View Post
in that case, the Monroe "QuickStrut" will retain your OEM feel.

Not to be Debbie Downer, but I've used the Monroe Quick units and hated them. I had them on my old Escort wagon. The ride height was never right again and the springs were a different rate than OE. Would not buy them again. Actually, if you gave them to me free I wouldn't put them on my Focus. Sure, they are convenient, but I'd rather do a little more work and get better parts.

Personally, I think the quality of KYB is much better vs. Monroe. I also like OEM strut mounts and bearings vs. either KYB or Monroe, both of which are IMHO inferior. If you are going to go aftermarket, go Moog on strut mounts. I have not heard good things about the KYB mounts, so I avoid the complete assemblies. Nothing worse than doing a strut job then getting a clunk in your front end months later due to a cheap failed strut mount or bearing. Strut mounts are like engine mounts. Better to pay a little more for better quality up front and do the job once.

So, my recommendation would be to use KYB GR2 / Excel Struts and shocks if you want to maintain close to OE ride quality. They will start out a little stiff but will soften up a little. Use OEM or Moog strut mounts. OEM strut bearings. Obviously, if you wanted to step it up a notch you could run KYB AGX adjustable or Bilsteins or Koni but I don't think that is what you are looking for and it would be a waste of money for you.

My second choice if convenience ruled over all other factors would be to get the KYB complete quick units if they make them for your application. KYB has an application cross reference catalog on their website I believe.

Amazon had the best price when I recently did my struts and shocks on my 01 Wagon, but things change from day to day so your mileage may vary. My factory springs were totally fine, so I didn't change them out.


Just my 2c based on having done 6 or 8 strut jobs in the past.
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