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Old 07-27-2015, 06:15 AM   #1
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Is it safe to replace 1 shock on a high mileage car?

My 2008 S was rear ended last week. Damage was limited to the suspension on the left rear which was damaged enough to bend the wheel a few inches forward and down. The insurance company is replacing all suspension components on that side including the wheel bearing, carrier, tire, wheel and shock (Bumper and tail light will also be replaced). The tires are brand new so I'm not worried about only one new tire but the shocks have 190,000 KMs (120,000 miles).

Would that not be dangerous as the new side would have different characteristics vs the old?

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Old 07-27-2015, 06:43 AM   #2
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I wouldn't dream of changing just one strut to a new one on a car with that mileage. The handling would be strange at best, dangerous at worst. Even finding a used one probably isn't a good idea. In fact if they are all OE take this opportunity to kick in some change and change all four. You will be amazed at the difference! You never realize how tired they have become until you change them.
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Old 07-27-2015, 06:46 AM   #3
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If it were me, I would insist on the insurance paying out to replace both rear shocks, I cannot comment on what you are actually asking, but I would insist on two new shocks as I don't believe it's good to have the same item with different 'mileage' on the car. You could argue that the car will be unsafe as the shocks will work at different rates, just my 2cents.
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Old 07-27-2015, 06:47 AM   #4
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IMHO, I would think that a shock with 120k miles would behave somewhat differently than one that is brand new

I would get the insurance company to replace both sides. It could be a safety issue.
As it was not your fault (pretty hard not to be when you are rear ended) they have a responsibility to make you whole and creating what could be an unsafe situation is wrong.

Are they going to be responsible for a car that is unsafe?
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Old 07-27-2015, 06:51 AM   #5
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At minimum shocks should always be replaced in pairs. Did the insurance company send your car to have the body checked for straightness? Sounds like the car took a significant hit to damage the suspension components. You will certainly want to have a laser alignment done to check for body/frame damage. Good luck.
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Old 07-27-2015, 06:52 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JayG View Post
IMHO, I would think that a shock with 120k miles would behave somewhat differently than one that is brand new

I would get the insurance company to replace both sides. It could be a safety issue.
As it was not your fault (pretty hard not to be when you are rear ended) they have a responsibility to make you whole and creating what could be an unsafe situation is wrong.

Are they going to be responsible for a car that is unsafe?
+1

This is what I was trying to say in a easier to read way
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Old 07-29-2015, 06:55 PM   #7
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Thanks for all of the good advice. Yesterday I had to make some decisions and I learned some new stuff.

We have 'no fault' insurance in Ontario, Canada and this means my insurance company pays for my repairs and is solely responsible to do so. It also means, I don't really feel like my insurance company is working for me. To add 'insult to injury' they introduced me to the term 'betterment'. Get this...they are 'improving' my car! So for wear parts, in my case tire, wheel bearing and yes, shock absorber, I have to pay extra! There is no way they will replace the other shock as their policy only allows them to replace parts damaged in the collision. If the car is dangerous, it my responsibility to repair that, end of story!

So not only am I paying 'betterment' but I'm having a new right shock installed. I'll replace the front shocks and right rear suspension components next year as I have enough planned work on the car this summer. Thanks again guys!
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Old 07-29-2015, 07:38 PM   #8
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I guess this is one thing that California has going for it. We are not a no fault state
Someone hits your car, you can sue the shyte out of them, so insurance companies will pay the piper to stay out of court

Even a little rearender can result in $1000's to the victim as well as fixing everything properly at no cost to you
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Old 07-29-2015, 08:07 PM   #9
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It's probably not as black and white as the insurance company would like you to believe especially when they are looking out for their profits and not your interest.

If it had been me, I would have looked to see if my policy had an 'arbitration' clause to resolve disagreements. If it did, I would have refused the settlement offer and asked that for an outside mediator to settle the dispute. Most likely, the insurance company would do the math and provide you with a better offer just to avoid delays and the time and expense of going through the arbitration process
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Old 07-29-2015, 09:09 PM   #10
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Rule #1 when doing a settlement with an insurance company
DO NOT accept their first offer

Rule # 2 when they ask you what you are looking for
Tell them at least double what they first offered

Rule # 3 use the term " you are acting in Bad Faith" in negotiations

Rule # 4 don't be afraid to get a good shyster lawyer

Rule # 5 refer to Rule # 1
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Last edited by JayG; 07-29-2015 at 09:18 PM.
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Old 07-30-2015, 05:33 PM   #11
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JayG,

I like your thought process.....

I am a little offended by the term "shyster" in Rule #4.
Don't get me wrong, I've been called a "Knuckle Dragging SOB" more times than I can remember and I do wear the Brut Force & Ignorance label with pride.
I'm just saying the term shyster lawyer is a bit redundant:-)

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Old 07-30-2015, 07:03 PM   #12
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when in doubt, use a bigger hammer
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Old 07-30-2015, 08:44 PM   #13
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Both shocks and get her on a frame rig to make sure she lines up within Porsche specs. I would want a Porsche shop making the repair decisions and doing the work, not some ins. guy who is simply minimizing financial outlay.
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Old 07-31-2015, 03:33 AM   #14
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Unfortunately it is the Porsche dealer/shop that is telling me the car doesn't need to go on a jig or be checked with a laser for chassis straightness. They visually inspected and don't feel the impact was powerful enough. They do however say that once they do an alignment and things are off, they may have to. I'm worried that they'll only do this if there isn't enough adjustment to get the car aligned. Not sure how I can ensure this other than hanging out at the shop until they complete the alignment.

As for the second shock, I've contacted Bilstein to see what they say.
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Old 07-31-2015, 08:15 PM   #15
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With 120,000 miles the original shocks are more than ready for replacement. They may not wallow like a pig in the mud, but they don't have nearly the damping of a new shock. I'd replace all four. Who pays is a matter for your lawyer.

Second, if the shop working on the car doesn't want to check the alignment of the frame, I'd find new shop because adjusting out a bent frame using the wheel alignment and only checking the frame IF there isn't enough wheel alignment adjustment to compensate for the possible frame damage is a pretty wrong-headed idea.
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Old 07-31-2015, 08:53 PM   #16
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Gotta say that I can clearly see why they only want to change one strut now! The potential suspension geometry handling issues from a bent frame would be masked by the belief the poor handling was being caused by the mismatched struts! If the chassis is bent the mismatched suspension geometry will make the car handle more like a 70's Vette. You are there but if the shop hedges on "if we can't align then we'll check the chassis!" then THStone is correct, Get a new shop!

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