The suspension suspends the body of the car over the wheels. This suspending (suspense?) Is accomplished mostly by large springs at each wheel. You can see them on the front above the wheels, with a cylinder thing inside them, which is the McPherson strut. The strut is like the damper on the storm door of your home. It keeps the springs from being too springy. They're probably OK if they're not leaking. A big problem with these vans is that a rubber jounce bumper at the top disintegrates with age, so when you hit a pothole and the piston in the strut bottoms out, you get a bone-jarring bang, and then you have to have few hundred dollars repair for lack of $2 worth of rubber. Yours, of course, is still practically new, which is why I'd be surprised your suspension needed attention, unless you spend all day traveling washed-out dirt roads. Most suspension problems are on the front, because that's where most of the weight of the car is. The strut holds the top of the steering knuckle, to which the wheel is attached. The bottom rides up and down on a control arm, which is attached to the frame with bushings and to the steering knuckle with a ball joint. The control arms are also connected to the frame by an anti-sway bar, which like the struts adds stiffness, but to keep the springs from bouncing the car back and forth from side to side.
Tuesday, July 1st, 2008 AT 11:44 PM