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Old 02-19-2017, 04:21 PM
SteveH SteveH is offline
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Default How do Bilstein shocks die?

I have Bilsteins on my '98 4Runner, and they seem to be worn out. They have 100K miles and 10 years use on them and have little shock effect - rear end is all over the place on bumps.

Having said this, one is dry, one has a light film of oil, and both have quite a bit of gas charge in them. I suspect they would not be out of spec, per Bilstein, however: http://www.bilsteinus.com/products/s...vice/warranty/

What have any RS members seen with really old Bilsteins? Do they get flabby without showing any other signs of distress?

Thanks,

Steve
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Old 02-19-2017, 04:44 PM
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I've had Bilstein and OME shocks go bad and most of the time they haven't been leaking or collapsed. I assume the valves had gone or the piston seal has worn the bore itself because when I took them off there was an obvious catch in the travel at the spot where the shocks spends most of it's life just cycling that inch or so on the highway. They would fully extend so it's not that the nitrogen charge is totally gone.

I noticed when I put the lift on my Tacoma that the original rear TRD Bilstein had been failed because the ride settled way, way down afterwards even though bouncing the bumper the suspension would damp out like you'd expect. So it must have something to do with the internal valving or shims. Perhaps it's a secondary circuit or bypass that's stuck open or failed.
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Old 02-19-2017, 06:00 PM
SteveH SteveH is offline
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Dave - thanks - good info. on your failure scenarios.

Given that Bilsteins give you nothing to grab to remove the nut, I ended up cutting mine off, and just ordered KYB Gasadjusts ($37 vs. $85) and will use those. At least they have a metal shock body to help with the install/removal.

The #$%^^ Bilsteins have a hardened rod, and even after I ground a flat on the rod and held it with vise grips, I could not get the shock off. Tragically bad Toyota design on this upper shock mount, as far as access. The E-locker makes the driver's side just that much worse.
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Old 02-20-2017, 09:08 AM
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Just as an FYI I did the KYBmonomax shocks on teh 4runner an so far am pleased. A bit stiffer valving than the gasadjusts and I thought that might be bad, but I actually like it a lot.
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Old 02-20-2017, 09:45 AM
SteveH SteveH is offline
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Marco - thanks. I was temped by those, but have put Gasadjusts on many trucks over the years, and have been happy with them. At this point, anything would be better.
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Old 02-20-2017, 09:52 AM
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Awesome, I'm sure they will be better for sure .

Either way I like the KYB's and it's good to hear you've had good experiences with them.
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