How to Use and Maintain your Coilovers for the Best Service
Not many drivers pay as much attention as they should to the process of picking the right spare parts for their vehicles. In most cases, they go with what has been recommended by the manufacturer or dealer, and to make matters worse, they don’t even pay attention to important care and maintenance tips.
Coilovers are an alternative to springs, and like any part of your vehicle, you should pay close attention to any problems it may have and maintain it for the most longevity. So, how can you properly maintain this part?
Regular Springs vs. Coilovers
Regular lowering springs are good because they’re an easy, economical way to lower your car when you are on a budget, but they do not allow you to lower your car automatically. On the other hand, coilovers are superior because they offer a more robust lowering and lifting ability for your vehicle, and you can use them to adjust the height of your vehicle at any given time.
The best thing about coilovers is that during the winter when the roads are covered with snow, you can raise them so that your vehicle can have better ground clearance. In addition to this, you are also able to adjust the damping when you are using coilovers, which controls the quality of your ride, depending on your vehicle type.
When coilovers are fitted, the shocks and the springs will be matched. This will mean reduced damage on the entire system. As mentioned, you can also adjust the height of the ride and the damping whenever you wish. Just keep in mind that unlike the regular lowering springs, you have to find the right height for your ride.
Maintenance Tips for Coilovers
How do you keep your coilovers in optimal condition? Follow these simple tips:
- When replacing or adjusting the coilovers, make sure that you always use the right manual tools. Most of the repairs can be done with hand tools, so avoid more stressful power tools – they can interfere with the other parts of the car during the repair.
- During removal and adjustment, always remember to look at the state of the shock absorbers. If they are already worn down, consider replacing them to keep your vehicle in working condition.
- If your car is a newer model, or you are thinking about putting the factory suspension back on it at some point, avoid the use of an impact gun at all costs. When putting the unit back together, use a torque wrench. When done improperly, the load on the bearings and the business changes, leading to noises while the car is in operation.
Replacing the Bushings and Bearings
The second part of the coilover maintenance process is replacing the bushings and bearings. When the bushings are properly installed and well-lubricated, they do not make any disruptive noises while the vehicle is moving. If your vehicle doesn’t have a lot of mileage, there’s no need to replace all the parts of the coilovers, only the ones that are worn out enough for replacement.
Replacing the bolts
Many vehicles have a torque-to-yield suspension system. If this applies to you, then you will have to replace the bolts during general maintenance. If the vehicle has been on the road for a long time, there is a possibility that the bolts will be rusted and less efficient than when you started using them. If the bolts are oxidized, spend a little money on new ones for the sake of your car’s suspension.
Protecting the Coilovers
Another important thing that you need to know about maintenance of your coilover system is that maintenance starts before installation. When you purchase the system, coat it with anti-seize or other material so that you can protect the part from corrosion. Also, make sure that each time you adjust the suspension, you clean and reapply the anti-seize coating material. When you are properly maintaining your Coilovers, they will not accumulate excessive amounts of dirt and debris.
How to Make Adjustments
The beauty of having coilovers in your car is the versatility that they give you in adjusting, with some being more flexible than others. Take the height before and after the adjustment because you do not want to make a poor adjustment and end up leaving insufficient ground clearing space. You also want to avoid setting the ride too high, which can also lead to instability.
When you have finished cleaning and adjusting the coilovers and the entire suspension system, the final thing you need to worry about is ensuring the vehicle is properly aligned. When the alignment has been done properly, you can make any other changes that you would like to the vehicle, but make sure there is adequate clearance.
Lastly, take the car for a test run and find out whether the wheel and tire assembly are hitting the new coilovers. Also, make sure that the brake lines are not rubbing and that there are no space conflicts with the speed sensor wires. These are a few adjustments to look at for perfect suspension, so take the time to do so! And of course, if there is any part of the maintenance that you cannot handle alone, call in an auto repair expert to make the adjustments for you.
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