good struts for new Impala?

Looks like my only options are OEM, Monroe, or KYB... of those, does anyone have recommendations? OEM feel underdamped to me, and I expect that Monroe and KYB will feel similar. Was really hoping that Koni or
Bilstein would offer struts for this car but I guess not. I also am not a fan of KYB from a durability standpoint, they're barely better than Sachs/Boge. OEM struts are rattling after 30K miles. Therefore I'm leaning towards Monroe, but will I be happy with the damping? Anything available that I'm missing?
thanks
nate
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Nate Nagel wrote:

My last experience with Monroe struts for my Grand Am upon opening the boxes: LF locked up, would not move RF leaking LR was dead, would not extend by itself RR seemed to be ok I took them back and got Gabriel. I found that the single tube versions have a much firmer ride. Often too firm for comfort.
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Paul wrote:

Hmm. I had a similar experience with Gabriel shocks for my Studebaker. Koni and Bilstein are the only two brands that haven't disappointed me yet, although the only fault I can find with the Monroe shocks on my pickup truck is that they don't have enough damping. Doesn't appear that Gabriel makes struts for the Impala anyway.
I'm not worried about any struts being too firm, rather the opposite. I've been driving "nazi slot cars" for years and prefer a "taut" ride.
Sounds like Monroe may still be the best of the not particularly appealing options for this car?
nate
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Nate Nagel wrote:

I have found, since I posted originally, that there are Bilsteins available in both HD and Sport versions, for either a 2006 Impala or a 2008 Monte Carlo (same P/Ns for both of those vehicles.) Any reason those struts would not work on a 2008 Impala?
nate
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Nate, I checked 2008 and 2006 strut cartridges on Napaonline, and found they show the exact same parts numbers for those installations. That would lead me to believe that the Bilsteins for a 2006 should fit the 2008.
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I saw the same, however when I inquired of the Bilstein distributor they basically said "we don't know why they are different but they are, we'll sell them to you, but if they don't fit/work it's your problem."
I'm tempted to go ahead and get them anyway.
Are there any other wear points on these suspensions that ought to be replaced "while you're in there?" Are the strut bearings typically pretty robust or should they be replaced with each strut replacement? Our recent heavy snows and resulting ice on the roads really did a number on the suspension, I can feel that it at least needs an alignment now.
nate
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Are there any other wear points on these suspensions that ought to be replaced "while you're in there?" Are the strut bearings typically pretty robust or should they be replaced with each strut replacement? Our recent heavy snows and resulting ice on the roads really did a number on the suspension, I can feel that it at least needs an alignment now.
nate
********* In my experience, GM strut bearings wear thin about when the strut cartridges seem to be replaced. A lot of people push the cartridges longer than they should.
You can "get by" with replacing the cartridges even though the bearings may be a bit past their prime, in most cases.
It is, kind of, your choice.
If it were my prime ride, I might do one thing, and if it were a utility vehicle I might do another.
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It's actually my company car, so I practically live in it. I'm trying to maintain this one properly, as by the time I'm due for a new company car, I'll likely need a new personal vehicle as well, and I'm gambling that the buyout on this one will be within my budget, and that there won't be anything more appealing on the used market for the same price. Plus, since have to sit in the thing every day for the next two years anyway, and I have to listen to those stock struts rattling and clanking every time I go over a rough road, I might be tempted to pour sand in the oil and go drag racing if I don't get good struts, even if I have to pay for them myself.
Even though I don't consider a Chevy Impala to be a particularly desirable car, i'm banking on the "pretty much anything will last a long, long time as long as you take care of it" theory. And I don't loathe it the way I did my '05; other than the tires constantly going out of balance and the fact that the struts are gone, it's pretty acceptable.
nate
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