Shopping for shock absorbers and website listed different options

Reply

  #1  
Old 09-11-16, 05:46 PM
B
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Arizona
Posts: 1,257
Received 3 Votes on 3 Posts
Shopping for shock absorbers and website listed different options

I have a 92' Ford Ranger XLT with 2.9 V6. I am going to change my shock absorbers myself for the first time. I was shopping for shocks online and it listed different options for my make/model: economy, original ride quality, increased handling, heavy duty, and load assist.

I don't do anything special with my truck.....no towing, no hauling large loads, no rough off road driving. Should I stick with original ride quality?



 
Sponsored Links
  #2  
Old 09-11-16, 06:09 PM
C
Member
Join Date: May 2015
Location: USA
Posts: 3,138
Received 2 Votes on 2 Posts
Sounds like Rock Auto... If you are happy with the way the truck rides, go with original ride quality. The ride will be harsher with the other choices.

A little hint....if the shocks come with plastic restrainer straps on them, leave them on. Put the shock on the bottom bolt (leave it a bit loose), aim the top at the hole, and cut the strap with diagonal cutters and guide the post in the hole as the shock expands. If you cut the strap and do the top first, you will have to fight to compress the shock to get it on the bottom bolt. Not a problem on a lift, but a pain when working on the ground.
 
  #3  
Old 09-11-16, 08:09 PM
B
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Arizona
Posts: 1,257
Received 3 Votes on 3 Posts
You're right.....it was Rock Auto.

Can I do this without a pneumatic wrench? ( I purchased impact wrench, and am saving up for compressor)

I'm also trying to visualize the best procedure of lifting or jacking up my truck to do this.
 
  #4  
Old 09-12-16, 03:28 AM
M
Forum Topic Moderator
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: USA - N.E.Tn
Posts: 47,551
Received 301 Votes on 267 Posts
Back in the day I always changed shocks without the aid of pneumatic tools - but they do come in handy

If you have decent access you can leave the truck sitting on all 4s, maybe jacking up a wheel if needed to make it easier to install the shock.
 
  #5  
Old 09-12-16, 04:55 AM
V
Member
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: North East Kingdom of Vermont
Posts: 2,533
Received 1 Vote on 1 Post
Check the prices at "Just Suspension" before you decide . . . . I've had good luck with them:

Just Suspension | JustSuspension.com
 
  #6  
Old 09-12-16, 07:18 AM
C
Member
Join Date: May 2015
Location: USA
Posts: 3,138
Received 2 Votes on 2 Posts
Haven't done shocks/stuts on a Ranger, but suggest you watch a few videos on you tube to see general procedure. An impact wrench is nice, but I've done many shock jobs with standard tools. You'll most likely need a breaker bar for the lower bolts. Spray the fasteners with PB Blaster or Kroil the day before to help loosen things up.

Even if you have to jack it up (can change rear shocks on my Escape without jacking, for example), the final tightening of the fasteners should be done with the wheels on the ground in normal position. That way the rubber bushings are in their "normal" position when you tighten the bolts and this minimizes twisting of the bushings that you would get if you tightened them with the suspension hanging down from a jacked up frame.
 
  #7  
Old 09-12-16, 07:59 AM
B
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Arizona
Posts: 1,257
Received 3 Votes on 3 Posts
Cool. Good information to know. My truck doesn't have struts and all 4 shocks are stand alone from the springs.

Should the shocks be fully extended (not compressed) when removing old and installing new?

Will the new shocks come with nuts? I would rather not use the old nuts.
 
  #8  
Old 09-12-16, 08:50 AM
C
Member
Join Date: May 2015
Location: USA
Posts: 3,138
Received 2 Votes on 2 Posts
They will always be a little compressed, but how much depends on whether car is jacked up or not. It really doesn't matter as you will just compress the shock enough to get it in correct position (unless you use my hint in earlier post about leaving binding strap in place). Unlike strut springs, shocks can be compressed by hand, although it can take some effort. Left unconstrained, they will expand to full length in a few seconds.

Most shocks come with new top bushings, washers, and nut, but not the lower bolt, washer, and nut. The lower bushing is part of the shock. The lower bolts, washers, and nuts tend to be vehicle specific, so you have to buy those separately if you want new ones. Unless they are badly rusted I generally reuse the lower hardware after cleaning it up. You'll usually want to put thread locker on the lower bolts; loc tite blue is what I use, so you may want to pick up a little tube or packet of that.
 
  #9  
Old 09-12-16, 09:04 AM
B
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Arizona
Posts: 1,257
Received 3 Votes on 3 Posts
Thanks,

How do I loosen something with thread locker in the future?
 
  #10  
Old 09-12-16, 09:09 AM
C
Member
Join Date: May 2015
Location: USA
Posts: 3,138
Received 2 Votes on 2 Posts
The blue stuff will break loose with hand tools; it's not that strong. Just prevents vibrating loose.
 
  #11  
Old 09-12-16, 11:47 AM
M
Forum Topic Moderator
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: USA - N.E.Tn
Posts: 47,551
Received 301 Votes on 267 Posts
I'm not sure what style of shocks you have on the front but the odds are you'll have to reuse [or replace] the bolts/nuts on the back. I recently helped my grandson replace the shocks on his Nissan SUV and we had to reuse all the nuts. Normally the nuts are still in good shape and won't pose an issue reusing them.

As stated above, spray the nuts with PB Blaster the day before or at least an hour before you start.
 
  #12  
Old 09-13-16, 08:55 AM
B
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Arizona
Posts: 1,257
Received 3 Votes on 3 Posts
OK. I'l probably spray the nuts with rust penetrant a week in advance. The nuts do look pretty good. I might buy replacements as a standby. I wonder if I get them at dealer or auto parts store
 
  #13  
Old 09-13-16, 10:48 AM
M
Forum Topic Moderator
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: USA - N.E.Tn
Posts: 47,551
Received 301 Votes on 267 Posts
Both would likely have them but a hardware store would be cheaper.
 
  #14  
Old 09-15-16, 09:59 PM
B
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Arizona
Posts: 1,257
Received 3 Votes on 3 Posts
Cool. Thanks for the input.
 
  #15  
Old 10-03-16, 10:17 AM
B
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Arizona
Posts: 1,257
Received 3 Votes on 3 Posts
I installed the rear shocks. I didn't have any problems. Getting ready to install the front ones.

I asked for 'original ride quality' shocks at the parts store. I found out later they sold me 'economy' shocks which I didn't want. I already installed. If I just keep these cheapo economy ones will it shorten the life of suspension parts?
 
  #16  
Old 10-03-16, 12:09 PM
M
Forum Topic Moderator
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: USA - N.E.Tn
Posts: 47,551
Received 301 Votes on 267 Posts
I'd be more concerned about the cheaper shocks wearing out sooner or not being able to handle a heavier load.
 
  #17  
Old 10-03-16, 12:36 PM
B
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Arizona
Posts: 1,257
Received 3 Votes on 3 Posts
I'll probably just leave them on for a few years till they wear out. I don't carry heavy loads or tow. I don't think the local parts store categorizes shocks the same as Rock Auto
 
  #18  
Old 10-03-16, 12:49 PM
M
Forum Topic Moderator
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: USA - N.E.Tn
Posts: 47,551
Received 301 Votes on 267 Posts
My local parts stores classifies shocks as either standard [economy] or heavy duty for most vehicles. Most have a lifetime warranty. Some vehicles may have more options.
 
  #19  
Old 10-03-16, 01:44 PM
B
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Arizona
Posts: 1,257
Received 3 Votes on 3 Posts
Yeah. The parts store here doesn't have a category called 'original ride quality.'

Do people ever install different category shocks from front to rear? For example, the guy who last installed my shocks years ago put stiffer shocks on the rear and standard ones in the front.

Since I am installing myself, I should install 'economy' shocks all around?
 

Last edited by bluesbreaker; 10-03-16 at 02:01 PM.
  #20  
Old 10-03-16, 02:12 PM
M
Forum Topic Moderator
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: USA - N.E.Tn
Posts: 47,551
Received 301 Votes on 267 Posts
It's best to have the same shocks on all 4 corners. He probably put heavier ones on the back because of expected heavy use.
 
  #21  
Old 10-03-16, 02:15 PM
B
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Arizona
Posts: 1,257
Received 3 Votes on 3 Posts
Ok. Thanks. Do you think the economy ones will be safe to use for my needs then?
 
  #22  
Old 10-03-16, 02:21 PM
M
Forum Topic Moderator
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: USA - N.E.Tn
Posts: 47,551
Received 301 Votes on 267 Posts
More than likely, they are probably very similar to the stock shocks. Having the same type of shocks on all 4 corners will make the vehicle handle better. Without bigger tires or heavy loads there often isn't a need for the heavier shocks.

My 4x4 F-100 has a 2" lift with 32/11.50 tires. It has the cheaper lifetime shocks on the front [backs are old] I intended to go with the heavier shock but they didn't have them in stock. They've worked fine for the last 10 yrs.
 
  #23  
Old 10-03-16, 02:31 PM
B
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Arizona
Posts: 1,257
Received 3 Votes on 3 Posts
ok. Thanks very much. I'll report back when I'm done later this week.
 
  #24  
Old 10-11-16, 12:06 PM
B
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Arizona
Posts: 1,257
Received 3 Votes on 3 Posts
New shock absorbers installed now. Ride is back to normal. Thanks again
 
Reply
Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Thread Tools
Search this Thread
 
Ask a Question
Question Title:
Description: