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2004 S80 front end riding / sitting low; tires rub when turning

Help, Advice, Owners' Discussion and DIY Tutorials on the Volvo S80 model. Sometimes called an "executive car", the S80 was and continues to be Volvo's top-of-the-line passenger car.
jumpmaster
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2004 S80 front end riding / sitting low; tires rub when turning

Post by jumpmaster » Tue Mar 01, 2016 7:30 am

I am looking at buying a 2004 S80 (170K miles). Everything on the car seems to be fine. All works, engine runs strong, no leaks, etc. But the front end is sitting considerably lower than the rear. To the point of tires rubbing when you turn hard right/left. The owner said he thinks it needs new struts.

I'm reading a lot on here about suspension, struts, mounts, bushings, and blah blah blah. There are so many topics on the suspension subject, but 98% of them relate to noises and such. I may not be able to have a mechanic look at the car, so, I need your help on a web diagnosis of why you think its riding low in the front.

Please assume I know absolutely zero about S80's and the front suspension when you reply. :-)

oldironsights
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oldironsights

Re: 2004 S80 front end riding / sitting low; tires rub when turning

Post by oldironsights » Tue Mar 01, 2016 5:00 pm

Many modern cars sit lower in the front than the rear. Compare to another same model in good condition.
The rear may sit higher when unloaded so it will be more level when loaded.
My S80 & other Volvo cars sit lower in the front.
If yours is lower than normal the front springs & shocks (Strut assemblies) could be worn. Also the rubber isolation/dampening bushings could be worn from age & compression.
Your lower control arm rubber bushings could be suffering from deterioration also.
Your steering limit stops on the lower control arms could have worn away.
Peruse the forum resources for clues as to what to look for.
These are normal wear items that must be addressed. These are not defects or faults of design.
With 170k miles on the clock, the new owner will have many items to address before pressing into service.

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oragex
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Re: 2004 S80 front end riding / sitting low; tires rub when turning

Post by oragex » Tue Mar 01, 2016 6:02 pm

Maybe he has replaced the rear shock absorbers which can raise a bit the rear end. Or, he might have put lowering springs in front. Compare with a stock photo to see if the front end sits too low and give the car a drive at highway speeds to see how it handles.

Do the tires rub only when the steering is at full lock? The tires may have a different size than specified.

Cees Klumper
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Re: 2004 S80 front end riding / sitting low; tires rub when turning

Post by Cees Klumper » Thu Mar 03, 2016 9:18 pm

Not a specialist by any means but I always understood that shocks don't influence height, the only dampen the movement. Height being determined by springs and rubber seats etc. i would also suggest comparing with stock photos. In any event it,s pretty easy and not too costly to replace springs and shocks/struts and they last a long time so it's a worthwhile investment. Get seller to lower the price a bit to compensate. As previous poster said, this is not a design issue. Good luck with the potential purchase.

ppachsa1
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Re: 2004 S80 front end riding / sitting low; tires rub when turning

Post by ppachsa1 » Sun Mar 06, 2016 3:52 pm

I have the exact same problem with my 2004 s80. I just thought my struts or shocks was bad.

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