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  #1  
Old 04-29-2002, 02:53 PM
EADG
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Hard Ride

Hello all, I'm having a problem with my 91 300E 180,000Km, the ride is hard. The car does not take small bumps well at all. I noticed the problem some months ago and ended up replacing all 4 shocks. (front right shock was leaking) The new shocks did not improve the situation all that much, the ride was still hard. I replaced the motor mounts a few weeks ago also, hopeing this would eleviate the hard ride - no such luck. (old front right mount was 1 inch shorter than new mount, car ideles with no vibration now ) The tires are new, <9000Km, stock size and inflated to correct psi.

I need the advise of the forum members on what component(s) to zero in on for replacement. I've just spent some time reading archived posts on sub frame mounts as a possible cause, but from what I read the symptoms don't fit my problem.

Returning my car to a comfortable ride is high on my priority list.

Cheers for now
EADG
91 300E
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  #2  
Old 04-29-2002, 03:33 PM
MikeTangas's Avatar
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Try lowering the tire pressure 3-5 PSI and see if that improves the ride.
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Old 05-01-2002, 10:16 AM
EADG
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Decreasing tire pressure made no noticable diffrance. Pressure is back to normal as of this morning. Any other suggestions? Is there anything in the suspension I should be looking at?


EADG
91 300E
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  #4  
Old 05-01-2002, 12:09 PM
pmizell's Avatar
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Join Date: Jun 2001
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Posts: 838
How do your shocks look? Do you have a lowered looking ride, i.e. are they "sagging"? If so you might want to replace those -- OEM shocks are inexpensive but R&R'ing them aren't.

A good place to start would be replacing the front sway bar bushings. There are 4 total and are relatively easy to replace.

Good luck..

~Paul

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  #5  
Old 05-02-2002, 12:49 AM
EADG
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pmizell, all 4 shocks were replaced about 12 weeks ago and they look fine, ie no leaks, and ride hight is looking good. I'll be stopping by my local MB dealer for a sway bar bushing kit tomorrow.

Something popped to mind while driving home tonight concerning the rubber mount on the front shock absobers. It's a large rubber piece, about the diameter of a puck, but thicker, there are 2 in the engine compartment on either wheel well. What sort of plasticity should these have? Rock hard? Slight give like a hockey puck or softer?


EADG
91 300E
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  #6  
Old 05-02-2002, 01:15 AM
pmizell's Avatar
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Oops..

Sorry, I meant to say springs. With new shocks and springs, your ride should be very close to new regardless of bushing condition -- except for small bumps as you mentioned Very tired today.... You will notice a substantial difference handling small bumps with 4 new front sway bar bushings in place. After that I'd replace the steering damper (little shock absorber in the middle) if it's still the original. Very easy to replace too.

Yes, those mounts in your engine bay are supposed to be rigid -- you may want to check to see if your shock "bump stops" were replaced with the shocks. They are mini rubber cylinders mounted on the top of the shock arm itself and protect the shock cylinder from hitting the top of the wheel well - but these would only help you with large bumps .... you said your suspension isn't taking small ones well

Another question: what brand shocks did you replace the originals with? I hope you used Bilstein

~Paul

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Last edited by pmizell; 05-02-2002 at 02:29 AM.
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  #7  
Old 05-02-2002, 03:25 AM
EADG
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I didn't replace the springs. I really don't know how to test the springs other than a visual inspection to look for fratures/cracks or a missing coil. ANy help on this guys?

As for the sway bar bushings... I'll be replacing them this weekend. I did install the bump stops on the shocks, I remember that because I had forgoten one and had to remove an all ready installed shock to fit it.

My rubber mounts in the engine bay are as hard as iron.

As for the brand of shocks that I installed - I don't remember... they came in a blue and white box

I appreciate the help pmizell.

EADG
91 300E
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  #8  
Old 05-02-2002, 11:40 AM
pmizell's Avatar
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Springs will compress slowly over time but there's really no way to test them other than by ride height appearance. Mine lasted to 200K miles, and were severely sagging when I replaced them -- I was low riding. If you are bottoming out on trivial dips or recesses in the road, then springs should be replaced.

The strut mount inside engine bay is supposed to be rock hard, it provides no road dampening whatsoever -- it merely supports the strut itself.

As stated above, replace the sway bar bushings and the steering damper and you should feel a noticeable difference over small bumps.

You should find out if you purchased cheap aftermarket shocks for your 300E or not, i.e. Monroe or something similar. Bilstein "comfort" are original equipment manufacture on the 300E. Do you know if you may have purchased "sport" or "heavy duty" shocks which would give a much more stiffer ride?

Please let us know what you find out.

~Paul

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