94 Camry Suspension Problem?

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Old 19 Nov 2006, 01:20 am   #1 (permalink)
taovan
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Default 94 Camry Suspension Problem?

Hi
My 94 Camry has excessive bounce on rough surface? Will replacing 4
struts help? Can someone, like me, with not mechanical experience do
the installation? What brand do you recommend?


Ivan

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Old 19 Nov 2006, 06:40 am   #2 (permalink)
m Ransley
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Default Re: 94 Camry Suspension Problem?

Sure it will help to replace them.

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Old 19 Nov 2006, 08:35 am   #3 (permalink)
Daniel
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Default Re: 94 Camry Suspension Problem?

taovan wrote:
> Hi
> My 94 Camry has excessive bounce on rough surface? Will replacing 4
> struts help? Can someone, like me, with not mechanical experience do
> the installation? What brand do you recommend?
>
>
> Ivan

==================
Others will disagree but I always use Toyota parts.
With out a lot of mechanical experience this job is best left to a
mechanic.
You can shop prices online for the parts though.
Check spring sag prior to beginning. Check stabilizer bar bushings and
end links.
Check ball joints and control arm bushings. Check axle boots.

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Old 20 Nov 2006, 12:31 am   #4 (permalink)
taovan
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Default Re: 94 Camry Suspension Problem?

Thanks Daniel.
This may sound like a dumb question to you. What are the Toyota parts
that I need to buy? Can you give me the names and from where I can get
them? Can BigOTire do the job right?
Thanks

Ivan


Daniel wrote:
> taovan wrote:
> > Hi
> > My 94 Camry has excessive bounce on rough surface? Will replacing 4
> > struts help? Can someone, like me, with not mechanical experience do
> > the installation? What brand do you recommend?
> >
> >
> > Ivan

> ==================
> Others will disagree but I always use Toyota parts.
> With out a lot of mechanical experience this job is best left to a
> mechanic.
> You can shop prices online for the parts though.
> Check spring sag prior to beginning. Check stabilizer bar bushings and
> end links.
> Check ball joints and control arm bushings. Check axle boots.


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Old 20 Nov 2006, 11:49 am   #5 (permalink)
Daniel
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Default Re: 94 Camry Suspension Problem?

taovan wrote:
> Thanks Daniel.
> This may sound like a dumb question to you. What are the Toyota parts
> that I need to buy? Can you give me the names and from where I can get
> them? Can BigOTire do the job right?
> Thanks
>
> Ivan

==========================
It's sort of difficult to find a good mechanic.
Seems like almost every time I've anyone do anything to the car I find
something not quite right.
I don't necessarily blame them. They're usually on a time clock where
if they finish sooner they earn more money. Plus it is not actually
their car.
I think it was BigO Tire that aligned my Toyota truck and every time
they touched it things got worse, including not leveling the steering
wheel. They finally let me go no charge and I (first time trying)
adjusted the tie rods an equal amount on opposite sides to straighten
the steering wheel.
The nice old lady from whom I purchased my car, thought she had new
tires. She did, but only three. They only charged for three and
installed three. Now there's an innovative way to get a competitive
price.
Suspension parts are really not that difficult to install if you have
the right tools.
I've changed almost everything now, and in doing the work, seems like
every place someone touched the car, I found something not quite right.
I go by the factory service manual and if they say to replace a snap
ring as a non reusable part I replace it. Seems like generally
mechanics don't. You have to buy it separately with the axle. Same with
cotter pins. I use new. Who knows what else they do. When I changed the
timing belt and transmission pan gasket I found errors also, stripped
bolts, chipped pulleys, etc. Things you would never know unless you did
your own disassembly.
The best idea is to look for an independent shop that has a clean, well
organized working environment, good references, and a helpful, friendly
attitude.
Click and clack the tappet brothers have a mechanic referral database
on their Car Talk web site based on customer comments.
Generally I would not recommend doing suspension work at a tire place.
I actually had the suspension fall apart once months after ball joint
replacement where they neglected to install the cotter pin.
Fortunately, the right front side of the car came crashing down as I
was exiting a driveway at two miles per hour, not rounding a curve on
the freeway at sixty five.
There could be exceptions. There is an America's Tire store locally
that hand torques the lug nuts and seems to be knowledgeable and do
good work.
Just be careful and do ask them to use Toyota parts. They can buy them
at a lower cost than you will and if you instruct them they will do so.
Specifically for struts, there is a "cushion" attached to the dust boot
that will probably need replacement. Check the sway bar end links for
grease leaks, check the ball joints for play - should be zero with
tires on wood blocks, car lowered half way down, prying from beneath
against a rag over the inside of the wheel. Also check control arm
bushings for cracking. Check axle boots for cracking or leakage.

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Old 20 Nov 2006, 10:18 pm   #6 (permalink)
taovan
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Default Re: 94 Camry Suspension Problem?

Hi Daniel,
Thanks for the advice! I appreciate your kindness.
I found three recommended independent shops around Berekely,
and was given the quote around $1,200, which was the same price as the
dealer. The quote from BigOTire is $719. I guess I'll just go with
the dealer.


Ivan


Daniel wrote:
> taovan wrote:
> > Thanks Daniel.
> > This may sound like a dumb question to you. What are the Toyota parts
> > that I need to buy? Can you give me the names and from where I can get
> > them? Can BigOTire do the job right?
> > Thanks
> >
> > Ivan

> ==========================
> It's sort of difficult to find a good mechanic.
> Seems like almost every time I've anyone do anything to the car I find
> something not quite right.
> I don't necessarily blame them. They're usually on a time clock where
> if they finish sooner they earn more money. Plus it is not actually
> their car.
> I think it was BigO Tire that aligned my Toyota truck and every time
> they touched it things got worse, including not leveling the steering
> wheel. They finally let me go no charge and I (first time trying)
> adjusted the tie rods an equal amount on opposite sides to straighten
> the steering wheel.
> The nice old lady from whom I purchased my car, thought she had new
> tires. She did, but only three. They only charged for three and
> installed three. Now there's an innovative way to get a competitive
> price.
> Suspension parts are really not that difficult to install if you have
> the right tools.
> I've changed almost everything now, and in doing the work, seems like
> every place someone touched the car, I found something not quite right.
> I go by the factory service manual and if they say to replace a snap
> ring as a non reusable part I replace it. Seems like generally
> mechanics don't. You have to buy it separately with the axle. Same with
> cotter pins. I use new. Who knows what else they do. When I changed the
> timing belt and transmission pan gasket I found errors also, stripped
> bolts, chipped pulleys, etc. Things you would never know unless you did
> your own disassembly.
> The best idea is to look for an independent shop that has a clean, well
> organized working environment, good references, and a helpful, friendly
> attitude.
> Click and clack the tappet brothers have a mechanic referral database
> on their Car Talk web site based on customer comments.
> Generally I would not recommend doing suspension work at a tire place.
> I actually had the suspension fall apart once months after ball joint
> replacement where they neglected to install the cotter pin.
> Fortunately, the right front side of the car came crashing down as I
> was exiting a driveway at two miles per hour, not rounding a curve on
> the freeway at sixty five.
> There could be exceptions. There is an America's Tire store locally
> that hand torques the lug nuts and seems to be knowledgeable and do
> good work.
> Just be careful and do ask them to use Toyota parts. They can buy them
> at a lower cost than you will and if you instruct them they will do so.
> Specifically for struts, there is a "cushion" attached to the dust boot
> that will probably need replacement. Check the sway bar end links for
> grease leaks, check the ball joints for play - should be zero with
> tires on wood blocks, car lowered half way down, prying from beneath
> against a rag over the inside of the wheel. Also check control arm
> bushings for cracking. Check axle boots for cracking or leakage.


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