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BMW 3-Series (E90 E92) Forum > E90 / E92 / E93 3-series Technical Forums > Suspension | Brakes | Chassis > Bent front strut, advice greatly appreciated



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      01-25-2012, 05:53 PM   #1
kek4zb
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Exclamation Bent front strut, advice greatly appreciated

First of let me say this, I'm a long time reader, first time poster. I bought a used 07 328i with the sports package 4DR as a college graduation gift to myself about 7 months ago. The car has the CPO warranty and since the finance manager was in my fraternity I was able to get the extended maintenance package for a very good deal.

I had a new set of tires put on my car two weeks ago because my OE Potenzas were showing cords on the inner inch of the rear tires, which at the time surprised me but I realize now that they were only summer tires and still lasted a good 25k miles. However the dealer/me wanted to make sure there was nothing wrong with the cars alignment since the tires were very unevenly worn. When the SA called me back he told me that everything was fine EXCEPT for the right front wheel which was still 2.5 degrees out of alignment. He blamed this on potholes/bad roads etc... This made sense to me because I know of one occasion during the summer where a highway I was on was getting repaved and as a result the expansion joints provided a solid bump even at 40 mph. So my question is this (thanks for reading this far)

The dealer said the RF strut is bent and needs to be replaced with "spindle and strut mount" and since the car currently has 52k the LF strut should be replaced as well. Total price, $2,350. The SA recommended going through my insurance. The total cost seems really high, I know BMW can be expensive to fix but an aftermarket strut/spring kit seems far cheaper than the OE parts which my SA quoted at ($1,530). Even the performance BMW suspension kit is less than what my SA quoted (tischer has it for $1,260).

Is my dealer really charging me $800 for labor?
Would it be cheaper to go to a good indy shop and put aftermarket parts on or just buy the performance kit myself and have the dealer install?
Is the spindle a different part from the strut?
Is it worth replacing the front left strut like the dealer recommends, what about the rear suspension?
If my brakes are covered under my extended plan, why wouldn't my suspension? both are wear and tear items
Any recommendations, what would you do?

I'm sorry for the essay/my lack of car knowledge but I wanted to do some research before committing to an expensive repair.

I greatly appreciate any help that is provided
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      01-25-2012, 07:01 PM   #2
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The spindle is different than the strut, yes. The spindle is the part that connects the wheel hub and brakes to the rest of the suspension (struts, tension arms, control arms, etc). This piece is steel, and pretty beefy though, so it surprises me that it is damaged. Usually, it's the other parts (control arm, tension arm) that are thinner and aluminum which get bent.

Did you get an itemized list of the repairs needed from the dealer? It's possible that more has to be replaced than just the strut and spindle, hence the high cost.
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      01-25-2012, 07:25 PM   #3
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Mike, thanks for the reply

The SA did give me an itemized list, RF spindle/strut/mount for a total of 5.5 hours and also a 4 wheel alignment, that's all he put which is why I am so confused.
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      01-25-2012, 08:45 PM   #4
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Now why would the spindle need to be replaced?
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      01-25-2012, 09:12 PM   #5
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Vapor I'm really not sure, the dealer blamed the misalignment on a bent front strut and from the sound of it the spindle is a pretty solid piece, I just assumed it was a piece that was required to put on the new strut, as I said, I'm not very car savy but I'm trying to learn
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      01-25-2012, 10:00 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mike-y View Post
The spindle is different than the strut, yes. The spindle is the part that connects the wheel hub and brakes to the rest of the suspension (struts, tension arms, control arms, etc). This piece is steel, and pretty beefy though, so it surprises me that it is damaged. Usually, it's the other parts (control arm, tension arm) that are thinner and aluminum which get bent.

Did you get an itemized list of the repairs needed from the dealer? It's possible that more has to be replaced than just the strut and spindle, hence the high cost.
Mike-y, is the spindle the same thing as the steering knuckle? I was told it is made of aluminum. Mine needed to be replaced too, after my curbside excursion.
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      01-25-2012, 10:51 PM   #7
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When I bought my car, I took it to Pepboys for alignment. They found out that one of the front struts was bent. They didn't have the strut in stock, so I bought an aftermarket one in a local autopart that specialize in European cars. The strut was like $150 plus Pepboys billed $70 for the labor. I didn't bother to inquire the cost of this repair in the local BMW dealer. An strut replacement is one of those repair that any good shop can easily perform. Hope this work for you.
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      01-26-2012, 12:25 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by luckyu View Post
Mike-y, is the spindle the same thing as the steering knuckle? I was told it is made of aluminum. Mine needed to be replaced too, after my curbside excursion.
I am thinking the spindle is #2 in this pic, which is called the carrier



http://realoem.com/bmw/showparts.do?...94&hg=31&fg=10

It's possible they consider the spindle something else. Because if you hit something hard enough to bend the carrier, you would have bent/broke other parts that connect to it.
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      01-26-2012, 02:56 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mike-y View Post
I am thinking the spindle is #2 in this pic, which is called the carrier



http://realoem.com/bmw/showparts.do?...94&hg=31&fg=10

It's possible they consider the spindle something else. Because if you hit something hard enough to bend the carrier, you would have bent/broke other parts that connect to it.
Thanks for including the link. Yes, that's the part I was thinking of. I think that's what was replaced in my case, but the work order shows "spindle carrier" with a different part number, so I'm not 100% sure now.
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      01-27-2012, 01:00 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kek4zb View Post
The dealer said the RF strut is bent and needs to be replaced with "spindle and strut mount" and since the car currently has 52k the LF strut should be replaced as well. Total price, $2,350. The SA recommended going through my insurance. The total cost seems really high, I know BMW can be expensive to fix but an aftermarket strut/spring kit seems far cheaper than the OE parts which my SA quoted at ($1,530). Even the performance BMW suspension kit is less than what my SA quoted (tischer has it for $1,260)
Strut replacement isn't difficult - $70 quoted at Pep Boys more like it - did mine in my garage. Always change both.

A good opportunity to install Koni FSD's....I say go for it, but do all 4 as they're real diff than what you have, and much more comfortable.

Spindle mount? Give us detail here. Ask 'em for a realoem.com reference; post so's we can view it on screen.
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