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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I need to replace the front struts on my 2008 Mercury Sable AWD (185,000 miles) and need some help on narrowing down parts...

Option 1a:

I really like the idea of quick struts for ease of installation. I have to go to the 2008 Ford Taurus to find an AWD version of the Monroe quick strut as follows because they aren't listed under the Sable. these will fit my 2008 Mercury Sable AWD, right?:

MONROE 272530 Front Left; AWD
MONROE 272531 Front Right; AWD

Is there a reason to stear clear of the Monroe quick struts for this car based on anyone's experience? Are they still a decent option?

Option 1b:
I am reading that the Monroe quick struts aren't the best, so I have thought of maybe going KYB as recommended on this site by others. However, KYB only offers the following for FWD only:

KYB SR4278 Strut-Plus Info
Front Left; FWD

KYB SR4277 Strut-Plus Info
Front Right; FWD

I imagine an AWD vs a FWD quick strut has to do with getting the correct ride height. What is the problem with using these on my AWD car? Ride height / clearance?


Option 2:
Anyway, so I thought of building my own full assembly with hand picked parts.

When it comes to struts, KYB has no FWD or AWD designations on their front struts like other manufacturers do. Surely that matters right?

KYB 334653 Front Left
KYB 334652 Front Right

The Monroe option parts are the same number as the AWD quick strut part number, but have NO AWD or FWD designation! So confused. Maybe they aren't related at all as these are the Spectrum struts.

MONROE 72530
MONROE 72531

If I have to get a strut that is specifically designated for a Front AWD, I'll have to go Motocraft:

MOTORCRAFT AST445 Front Left; AWD;
MOTORCRAFT AST372 Front Right; AWD

Misc questions:
- Even at 185,000 miles, the springs should be re-usable as long as they aren't broken or corroding, right?
- Are the coil spring seat / insulators usually re-usable?

Going the Monroe quick strut is really sounding good right now...

Robert
 

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Discussion Starter #2
As an update, I went ahead and ordered the Monroe Quick struts along with outer tie rod ends, stabilizer bar links, hubs, 2 new axle nuts, and lower control arms for both sides. $650...
 

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Do the Monroe ready struts come with the upper bearing mounts??? I've always heard that it's a good idea to stick with Motorcraft for those. Sounds like you're about to have lots of fun!!!!:)
 

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I installed the Monroe quick struts on the rear of my Sable and they suck when the temps get below 30 degrees. Dampening action becomes stiff.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Yes, the Monroe Quick Struts come complete. So its take out the old, put in the new. No strut / spring disassembly / assembly at all.

I'm NOT advertising these quick struts. They were just the most convenient part available to my application. I really wanted to go KYB, but I'd have to piece together the whole assembly at a greater cost, time and effort.

From RA:

Pre-Assembled Upper Strut Mount: OE-style bearings, SAE-grade nuts and bolts, Superior rubber-to-steel bonding, Plated steel for longer wear, All components manufactured to meet or exceed OE performance
Bearing Plate: The new bearing plate helps ensure consistent, precise steering return by eliminating memory steer. Helps eliminate steering noises commonly associated with worn or corroded bearings. Also improves overall steering smoothness
Upper Spring Seat: Engineered to complement the ride control characteristic of the corresponding premium Monroe® strut and upper strut mount. The upper spring seat provides consistent performance without transmitting noise or vibration into the chassis.
Coil Spring: Manufactured from high-quality U.S. steel, each coil spring is precisely calibrated to support the vehicles weight and help ensure correct ride height. Each spring is painted or powder-coated for excellent rust resistance
Boot Kit: The durable strut boot protects the strut rod and seal from dirt and debris. The premium bumper prevents component damage when the suspension bottoms out
Spring Isolators: Prevents metal to metal contact and helps eliminate noise between the spring and spring seat
Premium Strut: Premium strut technology based on application. Each strut features application-engineered valving to complement each vehicles unique ride and handling characteristics
 

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Discussion Starter #7 (Edited)
Will do. I'm learning an amazing amount already. I got the right side put back together last night and tore into the left side. The workshop manual helps, but I've learned a few ways of doing things better / faster.

For one, the manual says to take the knuckle with the strut out of the car and THEN take out the strut to knuckle bolt and take out the wheel hub (if you are replacing the hub as well as I am). Its VERY hard to loosen the strut to knuckle bolt and the 4 hub bolts while out of the car. The whole assembly is all over the place while trying to free the bolts. VERY HARD! I'll be doing this while IN the car on the left side. Taking out the hub while the knuckle is still in is tight because the CV axle is in the way of the 4 hub bolts. However, if you remove the outer tie rod end from the knuckle, you can turn the whole knuckle with your hands to get to the bolts on both sides EASILY. You can't get the bolts out all the way until you take the knuckle off, but you can loosen them up, which is the hard part. I put the hub in this way and it was very easy. I figure this alone will save 15-30 minutes and tons of energy.

Another thing is to NOT even start this job without a yellow benzomatic torch. You will likely need it to get out the hub bolts easily as well as remove the outer-tie-rod end if you are replacing that as well. Heat that tie-rod nut up HOT! The first time I did it I only applied the heat for a few minutes and it wouldn't budge. The second time I really heated it for 5-10 minutes and it loosened really easily. For the hub bolts, they will likely have blue loc tight. Heat up the tip of the nut sticking out toward you to loosen up the loc tight and it helps tremendously effort wise.

Also, on the left side I soaked each nut / bolt with PB blaster last night in hopes that it will help tonight in the tear down. I suspect it will really help. I soaked the struck around the top where it goes into the knuckle. Removing the strut from the knuckle so far was the hardest part of the job! Its a 2 person task. I think a trick I will do this time is to gently pry the gap in the back of the knuckle open and put 2 quarters in there to keep the gap open enough to loosen the knuckle so the strut slides out more easily. You will know what I mean when you get there...
 

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I installed quick struts on my '06 500, went for an alignment and the tech told me I had bad upper bearings (brand new, less than 10 miles on them). I came home, replaced them with new and did the alignment again. It cost me in the long run to do "quick struts", never again.
 
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