My trusty 318 (1997) was in the garage having a new cat fitted and i was
advised there was a rear offside suspension coil spring broken, the mechanic
told me its best to replace both coil springs, something about road holding
and balance. Do you guys and gals agree with him to replace both or just the
broken one. BTW the car has done 158000 miles.
Thanks in advance.
On Mon, 04 Jul 2005 16:58:43 GMT, "yvette dickerson"
Some things, such as shocks and springs, are best replaced in pairs.
Especially after that kind of mileage.
It's also surprising that the garage noticed it before the driver did,
but maybe that's just a woman driver thing...
I had a similar experience with my first E36 M3. I thought it over for
quite some time. After giving the undercarriage a good inspection I found
that it was also time for new struts and shocks. I did a lot of research and
decided to replace all of the springs and struts (and shocks) with a matched
set. I believe the manufacturer was Boge? I bought them from BavAuto.com.
It made a wonderful difference in the handling and ride. I never
regretted putting that much money into it. If you cannot afford such a
replacement kit then I would suggest just changing both rear springs. it
will keep the car symmetrical and balanced in the read of the chassis.
Just my opinion; however, I hope it helps.
It's pretty unusual for a spring to fail on these cars so I wouldn't replace
the other one based on concern that it would fail soon. My 318i has 340,000
on it and the springs are fine. There is also no reason to replace the good
one in order to make sure they are matched because there's no reason to
believe that two 'new' springs of the same part number will be matched any
better than an old one and a new one of the same part number. Some people
contend that spring characteristics change over time and that springs get
'tired' after years of use but there is no physical explanation to support
this myth so that also would not support replacing the good one. Save your
It's not that the other spring will fail, it's that it won't match the
new one. As soon as they are installed springs begin to lose rate and
loaded hight (slowly...). The new spring will be higher than the used
one. Now if this car is just transportation to you and you don't really
care about handling, then it's probably not a big deal.
Still not convinced by this. Spring are in permanent compression and are
obviously designed for this. There could be any number of reasons why a
spring could fail. You don't replace both headlamp bulbs when one blows, do
Lousy analogy, completely off the mark, but you've been struggling with this
Do you really believe coil springs don't change their spring rates/ride height
You're obviously too young to remember Back In The Day when mechanics would
stuff a bunch of funky "nuts" into tired coil springs to get a few more years
out of them...
I accept that over a very long period of time there will be some sag, but
seeing as replacing springs is a relatively uncommon repair, the life span
of a spring in the manufacturers eyes is probably very close to the intended
life span of the car as a whole. If one breaks after say 6 years because of
impact damage or inherent defect I can't see why the other has to be
True, I probably am a bit young to remember the old engineering tricks, but
then again we used to have to change the oil every 3000 miles. Modern
technology, manufacturing and materials has changed pretty much everything
on a car, can't see the springs being left in 50's technology.
I've replaced front springs in two cars now due to breakage. In one,
fatigue just made the springs break (they were nearly 30 years old, so
they had every excuse--springs are very stressed). I bought them both
and installed one, intending to install the other the following
weekend. The other broke before then, and I wound up doing it at
night. The springs were so stiff, though, that no difference in ride
height or handling was noticeable before the second one broke. (1966
Datsun 1600 roadster.)
In the other, I did them both the same day, even though in this case the
problem was due to a nick that created a stress riser rather than
fatigue. The difference in free length after 90K miles was marked, and
quite instructive. I still have the old one as a spare (and now it
should be a near-mate for the two installed ones). (1991 Honda Accord.)
It's also worth noting that valve springs (the other really notable coil
springs in cars!) lose both tension and height with time and cycles, and
many of them (say, 20-60%) often need shimming or replacement during
Jeff Strickland wrote:
It's not that they get "tired", but they eventually sag - ie, lose their
height. Replacing both will ensure that one side won't be lower than the
other. If you don't believe me, I can show you pics of my '91 E34 new,
and now. It's sagged at least an inch. Or my '87 motorhome, which looks
like a low-rider - about a 3" sag from new.
Absolutely yes. Replace both springs in the same axle, NEVER replace just
one spring on an axle. You should give serious consideration to replacing
all of the springs, but at the very least you should replace both springs on
the same axle.
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