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How can I tell if my springs have been replaced with better aftermarket springs? I keep reading about how they tend to break and puncture a tire.

I looked at mine today and they look almost perfect, just a little bit of rust starting in a few spots, otherwise they look great.
 

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What year is the car? The 99-01 had a recall. All 02's and about half the 03's seem to have this problem (work in a dealer service dept). Haven't seen the problem on any 04' and up.

Ford springs will have a small tag with a 3 letters on the bottom coil. Under the 3 letters will be a part number. I believe the bad original ones (99-03) started with a one and the newer ford replacements start with a 4. The ford springs don't usually look real rusty when the break. The aftermarket ones develop surface rust really fast but are strong and don't break.

If yours is not included in the recall, you can buy the recall kit and have them installed (strut is same from 96-07) or you could have them replaced now for the peace of mind. If your car is an 02 or 03, has the original springs and is currently in the 'salt belt' I guarantee they will break at one point or another. Sometimes when they break they will take out the swaybar link also.
 
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