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New addition to the fleet!

Help, Advice and DIY Tutorials on Volvo's extremely popular car line -- Volvo's 1990s "bread and butter" cars -- powered by the ubiquitous and durable Volvo inline 5-cylinder engine.

1992 - 1997 850, 850 R, 850 T5-R, 850 T5, 850 GLT
1997 - 2000 S70, S70 AWD
1997 - 2000 V70, V70 AWD
1997 - 2000 V70-XC
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brick_and_motor
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New addition to the fleet!

Post by brick_and_motor » Sun Feb 12, 2017 5:46 am

Hey all,

Just purchased another 98' to add to the fleet. S70, NA with options (sunroof, alloys, TRACS, heated seats, leather), 107K, it is pristine and everything works. All it appears to need is new shocks and that's my question to you all - which brands, and preference on quick struts for the front? I like the ease of not needing a spring compressor but there is a real cost difference.

Thanks for any advice!

Matt
1998 V70 GLT
1998 S70 NA
1988 Chevrolet C1500

j-dawg
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Re: New addition to the fleet!

Post by j-dawg » Sun Feb 12, 2017 6:07 am

I've heard that many shops will assemble struts for you if you just chuck some money at 'em. That's probs pretty cheap, so it seems worth doing the struts with legit parts, if you're planning to keep the car more than a year or two.
1999 V70 T5 5-SPD | ~270k mi | burns more oil than gasoline

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rspi
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Re: New addition to the fleet!

Post by rspi » Sun Feb 12, 2017 2:32 pm

j-dawg wrote:I've heard that many shops will assemble struts for you if you just chuck some money at 'em. That's probs pretty cheap, so it seems worth doing the struts with legit parts, if you're planning to keep the car more than a year or two.
This, the quick struts are not really the way to go. Get the good stuff and have a lifetime warranty.
'95 855 T-5R M, Panther - 22/28 mpg
'98 S70 GLT, Lil' Red 25/32 mpg
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brick_and_motor
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Re: New addition to the fleet!

Post by brick_and_motor » Mon Feb 13, 2017 3:14 am

Thanks guys! It seems I have a handful of options for shocks as far as brands: Sachs (oe), Gabriel, KYB, Sen-Sen, Monroe and Bilstein. Bilstein are out because of the price and the Sen-Sen are appealing because of their price ($125 for all four). Let's also assume the Sachs are a safe bet. Anyone else have experience with these brands beyond Sachs?
1998 V70 GLT
1998 S70 NA
1988 Chevrolet C1500

850 LPT
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Re: New addition to the fleet!

Post by 850 LPT » Mon Feb 13, 2017 6:11 am

I would stick with Sachs or Bilstein and stay away from the cheap stuff. Never pays in the long run in my opinion.
96' 850 sedan, base, auto, pewter/charcoal, 115k miles
99' S70, base, 5-speed manual, nautic blue/ tan, 213k miles
04' V70, auto, ash gold/ tan, 229k miles, daughters car
05' V70, 5-speed manual, loaded, mistral green/ tan, 146k miles
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bmdubya1198
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Re: New addition to the fleet!

Post by bmdubya1198 » Tue Feb 14, 2017 3:47 pm

If you're not looking to shell out the money for Bilstein or Koni, definitely go for Sachs. I just put Sachs struts in my cousin's car this past weekend (using my spring compressor, it was a quick and easy job after doing mine a couple months back) and the ride is incredible. His original struts were shot, and the ride is awesome now. The car holds the corners much better than before.
I have Monroe OESpectrum struts in my car, and they're alright, but they aren't the smoothest. The Sachs are not gas charged, and the naturally ride feels much better with them than my gas charged Monroes.
2000 V70R Venetian Red/Charcoal M56 Swapped 195k
2000 S70 GLT Mystic Silver/Taupe 253k
2003 S60 2.4T Silver/Black 112k
2007 XC90 V8 AWD Sport Titanium Grey/Black 166k
1993 944 Base Beige/Beige 221k
1991 944 Turbo Dark Green/Beige 173k
1992 245 Base White/Beige 249k
Sold-
1998 V70 GLT Black/Beige 199k
1998 S90- Silver/Gray 207k
1995 850 GLT Tropic Green... crushed
2001 S60 2.4T Black/Black 230k
1988 744 Turbo M46 Beige Metallic/Beige 188k

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Re: New addition to the fleet!

Post by j-dawg » Tue Feb 14, 2017 7:09 pm

If you're going for the cheaper brands, I'd pay a little extra for KYB. Monroe and Gabriel will do the job, but the Gabriels on my car when I bought it were worn out just ~30k after they'd been installed, and I've heard similar about Monroes. Probably fine for daily use on a beater, but if you plan to keep the car for tens of thousands more miles, the better shocks will pay for themselves. The Sen-Sens will be junk from day one.

If you're spending Sachs money, I've got Koni STR.Ts on my car and I like 'em. They cost less than $400 for all four corners and the ride is well-controlled. They also have a lifetime warranty, which I'm not hoping to use, but which bodes well for the quality of the product.
1999 V70 T5 5-SPD | ~270k mi | burns more oil than gasoline

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theWIFES_S70
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theWIFES_S70

Re: New addition to the fleet!

Post by theWIFES_S70 » Tue Feb 14, 2017 7:28 pm

I read somewhere that Sensen struts and shocks are OE for Volvos in Asia. And they have lifetime warranties... I'd love to read how they hold up to 10,000 miles or more. Do shocks and struts really go bad on these cars? Aren't the spring seats where you should REALLY spend your bread?

I've had Gabriel Readystruts in the front and Gabriel shocks for about 8000 miles of NYC driving (albeit a big chunk of that at the 25MPH speed limit...). No problems as of yet. I believe they have a lifetime warranty from Autozone, too. So if (and when) they go bad, I wouldn't be against installing another pair.
1998 Volvo S70, N/A, 5-speed, 183K
2007 Volvo S40, 2.4i, 5-speed, 97K

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brick_and_motor

Re: New addition to the fleet!

Post by brick_and_motor » Thu Feb 16, 2017 4:17 am

rspi wrote:
j-dawg wrote:I've heard that many shops will assemble struts for you if you just chuck some money at 'em. That's probs pretty cheap, so it seems worth doing the struts with legit parts, if you're planning to keep the car more than a year or two.
This, the quick struts are not really the way to go. Get the good stuff and have a lifetime warranty.
The quick struts I'm referencing are the Gabriel ones. I was just cruising the forum and came across a post from Nov 2016 where you said they are good. Has your opinion changed?

Sachs are competitively priced against bare shocks from other manufacturers, but when added together with new bump stops, bearing plates and spring seats, the cost nearly doubles. Given that this car has 107K and 19 years on it, it probably needs those things, too. Indeed, the strut mount kit offered by FCP is $270 on top of $284 for the 4 Sachs struts, for a grand total of $554. The Gabriels are $380 priced through Autozone for the quick struts and rear shocks, and do not need a spring compressor to install.
1998 V70 GLT
1998 S70 NA
1988 Chevrolet C1500

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Re: New addition to the fleet!

Post by bmdubya1198 » Thu Feb 16, 2017 7:36 am

What I did about the mounts and spring seats is ordered them from eBay from AMAutoparts. The kit cost something like $67 and the parts are good quality. Plus a 10 year warranty. Yeah, it sounds risky, but I have yet to have any problems with them.
As for bellows and bump stops, order the Sachs set on Rockauto. Around $16-$18 shipped with discount code. It comes with the set of both bump stops and bellows.
I got a really good rebate on my Monroe shocks/struts at all four corners, but if I did it again, I would go with Sachs at least for the struts. By the time I replace them again, I'm leaning towards Koni or Bilstein.
All in all, you're paying less than $300 for the struts.
2000 V70R Venetian Red/Charcoal M56 Swapped 195k
2000 S70 GLT Mystic Silver/Taupe 253k
2003 S60 2.4T Silver/Black 112k
2007 XC90 V8 AWD Sport Titanium Grey/Black 166k
1993 944 Base Beige/Beige 221k
1991 944 Turbo Dark Green/Beige 173k
1992 245 Base White/Beige 249k
Sold-
1998 V70 GLT Black/Beige 199k
1998 S90- Silver/Gray 207k
1995 850 GLT Tropic Green... crushed
2001 S60 2.4T Black/Black 230k
1988 744 Turbo M46 Beige Metallic/Beige 188k

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