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Midas For Shocks


dole2000
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Changing shocks is something I would normally do on a Saturday Afternoon. Been busy and don't have a Saturday to it myself. Has anyone had thier shocks done at a Midas or Les Schwab? I like they have a lot of locations and don't need an appoint ment. Thanks.

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Midas couldn't get rubber muffler mounts right on my BMW on 4 trips--kept breaking. Eventually they blamed my engine as "having too much vibration." I ultimately reversed the credit charge and they made no effort to dispute it. FYI, their rubber mounts were similar to OEM in appearance until you held them side by side. Then they were obviously inferior immitations.

I also have a non-automotive service background. While sitting around time after time I heard more overselling and general bull*BLEEP* than one could imagine.

Tom

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Changing shocks is something I would normally do on a Saturday Afternoon. Been busy and don't have a Saturday to it myself. Has anyone had thier shocks done at a Midas or Les Schwab? I like they have a lot of locations and don't need an appoint ment. Thanks.

Dole, i would recommend you order the oem parts from one of the online vendors "40-60 bucks each" and take the car to an indi mechanic to have them done. you'll come out pretty close to midas prices, and have true lexus oem shocks, instead of aftermarket ones that you're not quite sure of to begin with. last thing you want is your ls riding so hard it knocks out fillings in your teeth. and the shocks are probably one of the most important contributors to the car's smooth ride. a little variation in the shock pressure, can mean variations in the way the rubber bushings in the suspension arms work, tires ride, steering characteristics, etc.... Both Blake and I have gone the oem route, and I think it's safe to say, we're both quite happy with the results. My car handles extremely well now, moreso than i thought it would. it's soft when it needs to be, and ridigid when it needs to be, if not some-what sporty. I think since over the years and generations of the LS being "tightened" up in it's driving characteristics, that the new pressure requirements for the shocks these days, is translated into the replacement shocks for the older models.

PS: you have to remove the rear seat to get to the rear shock towers.....you sure you want midas tearing your rear seat out? If you do decide to go with midas, might i recommend YOU remove the rear seat yourself before you take it to them. That is what I did for my rear shocks. Simply because I wanted to make sure the rear seat was removed and installed properly, with the proper time and touch applied, not some quick spin of the air wrench to strip out the screw threads.

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Midas locations are franchises and Schwabs are company-owned. That said, it still comes down to the individuals running that location. Get a referral from someone who has been dealing with an establishment on an ongoing basis and and has a high level of satisfaction for your service needs.

For this specific need follow NC's advice if at all possible.

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If you ever let anyone other than a dealer or brand specific indi mechanic work on your car there is a real high probability it will be done wrong and or you will be sold things you dont need. These guys are usually on commission for parts and labor sales. They will push the things they sell, not what you need. If a strut top is bad they wont care, too hard to get one. They will just throw in the strut, etc. I was a dealer mechanic 25 years and every couple days we fixed things these guys did wrong and heard all about the parts they sold people that were not needed. Over and over again it was always the same story. Midas, Pep Boys, any name you put on it, ending badly was usually the outcome. It's either you, the dealer or an indi Lexus mechanic. Anything else is a huge crapshoot.

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the online dealerships.... i like www.lexuspartsonline.com myself. I checked, your struts are $65 a piece.. can't beat that!

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  • 1 month later...

PS: you have to remove the rear seat to get to the rear shock towers.....you sure you want midas tearing your rear seat out? If you do decide to go with midas, might i recommend YOU remove the rear seat yourself before you take it to them. That is what I did for my rear shocks. Simply because I wanted to make sure the rear seat was removed and installed properly, with the proper time and touch applied, not some quick spin of the air wrench to strip out the screw threads.

nc11,

I am gearing up for this repair and getting all the parts together. The price of around $60 is for the strut "rod". The shock absorber or strut is $100+ (non-air). Strut mounts are about $100 each! I found an ebay seller for the KYB version for about $40 each. You need 4 of them, 2 fronts and 2 rears. Then you need new bumpers all around : 4x$15, front spring insulators : 2x$30, rear insulators are 2 pieces : 2x $30.

I understand that the manual calls for the rear axels to be removed but others have said this is not necessary. Can anybody confirm how this procedure goes?

Also the spring compressor tool used, a simple inexpensive one from ebay?

Thanks,

glenmore

1990 LS400

1991 300CE

2000 C280

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My son recently busted the two front struts in my Previa Van (don't ask how). Midas did an inspection and came back with $275 for each strut+installation- $900!!! I called my local Lexus guy and he told me he could do the work for $300, parts and all. Needless to say I had it towed to my local guy. He then found that the rear axle was also bent and one of the strut mounts was cracked- Midas didn't catch any of this in their inspection. In case you think I was duped - I saw the old parts and they were bad. I've decided that I won't go to Midas ever again based on this experience.

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Geezzz man, what's your son's name? Bo Duke of the Dukes of Hazzard?

Kid jumped the van.... Now that's funny!! :lol:

sort of...

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PS: you have to remove the rear seat to get to the rear shock towers.....you sure you want midas tearing your rear seat out? If you do decide to go with midas, might i recommend YOU remove the rear seat yourself before you take it to them. That is what I did for my rear shocks. Simply because I wanted to make sure the rear seat was removed and installed properly, with the proper time and touch applied, not some quick spin of the air wrench to strip out the screw threads.

nc11,

I am gearing up for this repair and getting all the parts together. The price of around $60 is for the strut "rod". The shock absorber or strut is $100+ (non-air). Strut mounts are about $100 each! I found an ebay seller for the KYB version for about $40 each. You need 4 of them, 2 fronts and 2 rears. Then you need new bumpers all around : 4x$15, front spring insulators : 2x$30, rear insulators are 2 pieces : 2x $30.

I understand that the manual calls for the rear axels to be removed but others have said this is not necessary. Can anybody confirm how this procedure goes?

Also the spring compressor tool used, a simple inexpensive one from ebay?

Thanks,

glenmore

1990 LS400

1991 300CE

2000 C280

Glen, sorry, I missed this one....

The rear axles do not have to be removed at all. I do recommend the use of a flat wratchet for the tops of the rear strut mounts, as it is pretty tight along the back widow. An air wratched would be ideal. I used a pair of spring compressors from the rent-a-tool program at autozone. I HIGHLY recommend using a drill with a converted wratchet attachment to tighten the compressor clips, otherwise you will wear yourself out if you do it manually, that's what I did, and it nearly killed me! Took forever, and by the time I was done, i had no strength left. I just replaced the struts, none of the other stuff. That was about 25k miles ago. I can tell, especially in the cold air, that my strut moutns are wearing out, as the car creaks, and I get a lot more road noise into the car through the hardened rubber mount rings that the springs rest against. I'm not so sure you need the bumper caps, mine looked brand new. I do suggest the strut mounts though, since you're gonna be there anyway.

They great thing about our cars, and especially being the DIY types, is that spending the extra couple of hundred bucks on the surrounding parts, really generates a benefit. I mean when you're 10+ years old, anything you put on the car that is new and oem is going to have a very positive impact. So the money's not wasted. Even if the part is "with in spec", a new one IS "spec". Can't beat it!

My strut mounts are hopefully going to be replaced this spring, along with new inner tie rods and/or a rebuilt rack.

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No OEM struts and it will never ride the same. Just because KYB makes them doesnt mean the valving is the same.

From what I can gather you have 3 choices. 1) Tokico, longevity is suspect. 2) KYB GR2s, may be too stiff and harsh and 3) Lexus "OEM" which is also made by KYB but different from the KYB GR2s.

The Lexus "OEM" is the closest to the original feel and also the most expensive. I've been comtemplating this repair for the past few months and lately the price of the struts at Park Place seem to go up by the day. In my notes the rears were $117 just the other day and now they are $123.

Thanks for the tips nc11! I agree with your comments about money not being wasted. Put in new shocks sooner rather than later and enjoy the new ride! Two of my friends had opposing thoughts on investing in their homes. One did minimal repairs and upgrades to his house so he saved the money but then realized less of a price when he sold it. The other guy always spent the money for i.e. upgraded kitchen, hardwood floors, etc. and he may not have recovered all the money spent upon selling the house but his point was he was able to ENJOY living with the nice floors and upgraded kitchen.

glenmore

1990 LS400

1991 300CE

2000 C280

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  • 1 month later...

Has anybody installed KYB GR-2 struts?

Scott:

I just tripped over your post....... a little late, oh well.

Yes, I put GR-2's on my '95. Not fun, Rear's are a real PITA, not the fault of the shock though.

The new shocks on the rear made the most difference. Overall, the ride is fairly stiff, probably stiffer than I'd like, in hindsight. It has been about a year now and things have smoothed out. I've got to do the front end bushings, so it's a bit unfair to judge the shocks' ride quality one way or another.

To do it all over again, I'd put the OEM shocks on instead of the GR-2's, but the GR-2s are not totally objectionable either. I'd say that if you did put them on that you wouldn't hate them, but to do it again, I wouldn't spend the extra money to get them.

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Hey 'Cutter,

Thanks for responding! You were actually the guy I was most hoping to hear from since you've had yours awhile.

I guess things have changed. Looks like $450 from Lexus Parts Online and $235 shipped on the GR-2's through eBay. I put maybe 100 miles a week on the old girl and that RF has a lower bushing slopping all over. Considering your comments, my limited usage and the current price difference I might have to go with the Gr-2's and apply the remainder to insulators and mounts if necessary.

Thanks again for taking the time to holler out! :)

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Hey 'Cutter,

Thanks for responding! You were actually the guy I was most hoping to hear from since you've had yours awhile.

I guess things have changed. Looks like $450 from Lexus Parts Online and $235 shipped on the GR-2's through eBay. I put maybe 100 miles a week on the old girl and that RF has a lower bushing slopping all over. Considering your comments, my limited usage and the current price difference I might have to go with the Gr-2's and apply the remainder to insulators and mounts if necessary.

Thanks again for taking the time to holler out! :)

Scott:

(Given) my limited usage and the current price difference I might have to go with the Gr-2's and apply the remainder to insulators and mounts if necessary.

Probably not a bad plan.......You will probably need at least new insulators & maybe the mounts too.

Do you have a good set of spring/strut compressors? Sears has a decent set for $40'ish bucks. Please be VERY CAREFUL when compressing/removing the springs. If they let loose, you'll be dead before you hit the floor. Thought about having an indie change 'em out? The rear's are no fun.....the backseat has to come out...

I average about 250 miles per day (no, not a misprint) and most of it is freeway....80'ish. The extra firmness not only doesn't bother me, but is probably a good thing. If I spent more time on stop and go city driving, the GR-2's might get to be a bit much, but as it stands, I don't have any major complaints.

If you've got any specific questions, just PM............

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Thanks for the good advice and the offer for guidance!

I'm fortunate that the route I have for work includes our regional training center equipped with 2 alignment systems, tirechangers & balancers and on- & off-car brake lathes. It has an OTC strut spring compressor on a mounting stand, so I'm good to go if I can unclench my wallet long enough to make the purchase :unsure:

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Thanks for the good advice and the offer for guidance!

I'm fortunate that the route I have for work includes our regional training center equipped with 2 alignment systems, tirechangers & balancers and on- & off-car brake lathes. It has an OTC strut spring compressor on a mounting stand, so I'm good to go if I can unclench my wallet long enough to make the purchase :unsure:

Scott:

I'm fortunate............

Yeesh!, no kidding! The only thing that could make it any better is if there were some young, eager interns/students just looking for "something to do"...........Bet you could "fix 'em right up. :lol:

I'm good to go if I can unclench my wallet long enough to make the purchase :unsure:

Aww, just do it!. After it's done & you drive it for the first time, it'll be "ear to ear grin" time.....

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