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Old 11-26-2006, 12:17 AM   #1
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Default "hop" from the front end

My brother'* 00' SLE is having a problem with the front end of the ca.r At highway speeds when you're going perfectly straight, if you hit a bump, the front end of the car will sway immediately to one side or the other. Sometimes the car will swerve up to a foot in either direction after hitting a bump! Its an extremely odd feeling because it does it just by hitting a bump. the car also is kind of bouncy in comparision with my Aurora on the highway. It feels like it'* floating a whole lot and just bouncing around in general. I'm not sure what it is. the car only has 74,000 miles on it so the struts up front shouldn't be bad yet. any ideas on what could be wrong with it? If you're turning and hit a bump the car is fine, it'* only when you're going straight and hit a bump that the front end starts to sway.
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Old 11-26-2006, 02:05 PM   #2
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Struts could very well be the issue.

A quick way to check is turn the wheels fully one way and then the other to inspect the struts. If there are any signs of moisture or oil on them, then one or both leaked out and need to be replaced.

I personally had a set of quality Monroe struts leak out in under 10K miles once.
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Old 11-26-2006, 10:39 PM   #3
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I agree with Bill that it certainly sounds like weak shocks. Does it make noise when it hits the bumps? Has an alignment been done recently? If the struts are bad, as well as the alignment, it could cause that swerving problem
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Old 11-26-2006, 10:41 PM   #4
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Had the tie rods checked recently. Sounds suspiciously like the rods.
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Old 11-26-2006, 11:14 PM   #5
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my brother went back home this weekend (two hours away) so I will try and get him to check the things you guys mentioned. He doesn't really have any noise from the front end other than a little bit of a rattle sound when bumps are hit. Actually, I guess I wouldn't call it a rattle, but more like the sound a pogo stick decompresses. Odd.
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Old 11-27-2006, 11:32 AM   #6
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I think that I know the sound you're describing. If so, it'* from the internals of the strut, from wear. There may, or may not, be external signs of leakage associated with that noise. Miles alone don't tell the full story. Road surfaces can be a huge factor.
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Old 11-27-2006, 11:39 AM   #7
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Agreed, if the valving in the strut has broken or is no longer functioning.. the springs will spring freely and make driving the car very unsafe.
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