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In the past year or more I’m seeing more and more bad front struts, on Gen 1 cars as the earliest ones are now 20 years old. This week at the shop I got in 5 sets of new struts from Honda. Yesterday I did two sets. I have a set to ship out to a person in Florida and will have two sets on the shelf as I have other customers I have given quotes to replace theirs. I’m probably going to order another 5 sets this week to have inventory.

There have been some posts in other threads where the is a member of the forum who says he’s bought and sold more than 30 insights and the front struts don’t go bad. His suggestion is to just bounce the front end of the car. This is not true nor is just bouncing the front of the car a good test.

You really need to visually inspect the front struts from time to time.
This is what a leaky bad strut looks like in the car:
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The oily area on the spring mount and dust boot are a strut that has a blown seal and the oil from inside the strut is leaking.

Under the dust boot there is a front bump stop that fits over the shaft of the strut. The bump stop is a type of foam rubber. We are also finding that in most cases the bump stops are extremely deteriorated or destroyed and should be replaced also when doing the front struts. Here are a couple of pictures, the first is a bump stop that is old and deteriorating. The second picture is a bump stop that about a third of it is gone.
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As far as I know currently the only front strut that is available for these car are OE. The current list price is approximately $180.00 ea. I’ve heard people complain about the price. This is however comparable to other cars that have been produced. When you consider the front struts are manufactured as a Right and a Left and are not interchangeable from side to side like rear OE shocks that list price for approximately $250.00 ea. The front struts are actually somewhat reasonably priced.

Scott
 

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Nice explanation i agree thats a fair price for front struts. Ive replaced several on civics and they are around same price on the east coast .
 

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Indeed, I had the exact same problem with the strut oil leak. It seemed to be a fairly straight forward replacement procedure...but it was not. I did learn the proper procedure here at the forum, BUT, after the fact. I did not remove the wheel hub prior to removing the strut bolts which caused the axle to pull slightly forward out of the transmission (automatic). I managed to push the axle back in and the strut bolts went in ok. Now after all is back together and I attempted a test drive, there is a clunk noise when shifting to reverse or drive. Also, the car will roll a foot or so back or forward in park. Is there an easy fix or did I really screw something up at the axle/trans connection?
 

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Discussion Starter #8
You will need to pull the axle out and check the inner joint. You have likely disjointed the inner joint. You will need to undo the large clamp on the axle boot and probably put the bearings back together.

Scott
 

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Thank you. Yes, the three bearings came completely off their mounting. It seams like a poor design to me. Also, is it normal that the trans. fluid drained out after removal of the axle (automatic trans.)?
 

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Scott,

Are you curious enough to dissect any blown fronts and maybe find cartridges that may fit? KONI or something similar come to mind.
 
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