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2010 Subaru Impreza 2.5i Premium 5-door, *old* 2009 Kia Rondo LX 4cyl 2.4L
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Discussion Starter · #21 ·
Just got an email from the Amazon seller (
) that the shocks have departed the KYB factory and are en route to their warehouse, where they will be shipped to me. They have been good about replying to my emails, however they are not proactive about letting me know what the order status is and have been extremely slow. I ordered on 02/08 and the estimated arrival date was 02/16 to 02/22. So far, nothing. The prices were good, but not worth taking a month for the product to arrive... :mad:
 

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2010 Subaru Impreza 2.5i Premium 5-door, *old* 2009 Kia Rondo LX 4cyl 2.4L
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Discussion Starter · #22 ·
Got the new struts and shocks in this morning and put them in this afternoon. Preliminary feelings are they are not all that much stiffer than the stock, but they are give a MUCH more controlled ride.

Looking at the OEM struts from Kia, they appear to be manufactured by Sachs in Korea and are Kia branded. The KYB replacements are also made in Korea, but are a little beefier than the OE (shaft and tube are slightly larger in diameter, weigh a little more).

As an installation tip for anyone else that wants to put new struts on their Rondo, the front struts do NOT have a hex key top shaft or anything to grab onto. There is a small flat spot on the shaft that the top mount fits over that holds the shaft from rotating. When putting the top mount on the new strut assembly, you need to make sure and match up the flat spot and hold the mount down in place as you tighten the new top nut. Also, since the sway bar is connected to the strut assembly by the tie rods, it's much easier if you put both sides of the car up at once on jackstands to take the pressure off the sway bar before removing the tie rods. The top mounts are also unidirectional, so make sure you either mark which way they go back in, or have a good memory!
 

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2016 FIAT 500X Trekking Plus AWD; 2016 Kia Forte5 SX 1.6T A/T
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Preliminary feelings are they are not all that much stiffer than the stock, but they are give a MUCH more controlled ride.
What is much more controlled ride?
One question though - how many miles have you put on OEM shocks?
 

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2010 Subaru Impreza 2.5i Premium 5-door, *old* 2009 Kia Rondo LX 4cyl 2.4L
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492 Posts
Discussion Starter · #24 ·
"More controlled" means less movement when going over uneven surfaces (bumps, cracks, etc). The more movement you get, the less dampening your struts are doing. For an example, going over railroad tracks, if your struts are worn, you will usually get a little diagonal or front to back movement after your car has passed over the rough area. Usually a little "wiggle" or play after the initial shock from the uneven surface. If you have proper dampening, it will immediately return the vehicle stable, with no vibrations persisting through the chassis.

I had 56,811 miles on the OEM struts/shocks.
 

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2008 Kia Rondo EX V6
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Finding this info helpful, as I have 52,000 on my 2008 EX V6 and the rear end sounds like it's going to fall off every bump I hit. I've already had the links replaced by kia, and that quieted down the metal rattle noise I had (by the way, I've had 3 replaced front passenger, rear both). Every left hand curve I go around, the car wanders, like a bike that has the suspension set to low for the weight of the rider/bike. When I curve right, car feels solid. Also, the rear tire hops around more than Peter Cotton tail, down his old bunny trail. I have had the car to Canadian Tire (bought the Nordic winter tires and rims) and re balanced the tires. Both times the weights move EVER so slightly, the weight never changed. Got to be suspension. Kinda worried about putting a trailer on the old girl. Has anyone considered something like the springs of the Sorento? I have no idea, just thinking.
 

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2010 Subaru Impreza 2.5i Premium 5-door, *old* 2009 Kia Rondo LX 4cyl 2.4L
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Discussion Starter · #26 ·
JamesP, the springs seem to be fairly stiff, though I believe some other users have tried putting the springs from a 7-passenger Rondo on their 5-passenger model. Remember that the only hitches available for the Rondo are Class I (200lb tongue weight, 2000lb max gross trailer weight), so you aren't going to be able to pull much at all. Have you checked your sway bar bushings at all to see if they are worn out?

Two things I'm interested in for the Rondo are the Rear Lower Bar and Rear Sway Bar kits from Ultra Racing. The Rondo is very understeer prone, so stiffening the rear should add some oversteer to compensate.
 

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2008 Kia Rondo EX V6
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I have heard of swapping in the 7 passenger springs, but, I also heard they are not that much stiffer. I have had the rear of the car sitting pretty low, with only the trunk full, so this is where my concern comes from. The car has to go in as the rear end is starting to really klunk (sp?) over bumps. My KIA is really good to me, so I'm hoping to get this resolved quick. But the temptation of those KYB GR2's,,,,, gotta love aftermarket!
 

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2010 Subaru Impreza 2.5i Premium 5-door, *old* 2009 Kia Rondo LX 4cyl 2.4L
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Discussion Starter · #28 ·
This is what I was talking about how the top of the shaft is flattened on one side to hold onto the strut mount.



And here is a shot of the make/model# of the original strut showing the manufacturer.

 

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2016 FIAT 500X Trekking Plus AWD; 2016 Kia Forte5 SX 1.6T A/T
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60k miles (100k km) - seems to me like mainly worn shocks.
But a good brand shocks will last longer and for sure will be acting better.
60k miles - upgrade is justified :D

For comparison - I drive Elantra with about 70k miles. It is loud (on any railroad tracks - I got them plenty in Lansing area), stability of the ride is not great. However, still not much play "up-down".
When it gets warmer, I will need to put some money in it to make sure everything is working fine.

What I find disturbing though is that nowhere in MICHIGAN one can test suspension. I mean, any dealer will look for loose/worn parts, but they are unable to verify how good shocks are. They told me to "swing" the car...
Guys, go to Europe to see what kind of test every car must pass every year (exception are brand new cars - after 3 years, but then every year). Not only emission, but lights (aim too), tires, glass, body damage, missing parts, brakes - you name it.


OK, it was my digression.
I think it will be very hard to compare with a brand new one now. Do you have any shots comparing size of the shocks?


I just noticed - they are gas filled. I would not expect it...
 

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10 Optima LX, 12 Sedona LX
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...Guys, go to Europe to see what kind of test every car must pass every year (exception are brand new cars - after 3 years, but then every year). Not only emission, but lights (aim too), tires, glass, body damage, missing parts, brakes - you name it....
Europe? You ought to come to Pennsylvania. Safety inspection every year no matter what the age of the car, for even more than the above mentioned systems. Emissions tests of varied types from 1975 and newer.

PLP, I've see some of the cars in your state, and I'm glad I don't have to drive on the same roads as some of them.
 

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Discussion Starter · #31 · (Edited)
I actually already put all the old stuff out in the garbage, otherwise I would take some better comparison shots. I'll try to get my caliper out and measure the new ones on the car now. The struts weren't really any bigger, but the rear shocks definitely seemed to be. Beefier construction, too (metal top cap where the shaft comes out, stock is plastic, wider tube, etc). I always mean to take pics as I work on these things, but when I'm a couple hours into it with grease up to my elbows, can't seem to remember to grab a camera... not that I'd want to get all that on my new camera anyway, lol!

Just about any repair shop and/or manufacturer tells you to replace your shocks and struts at 50K miles. It might be a little premature, and I've definitely had them last much longer than that, but for under $250 to go ahead and make it enjoyable again (not to mention preventative maintenance on tire wear and the other parts of the suspension), I would definitely recommend a change around 50K to 60K miles, whether you "think" you need them or not.
 

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2008 Kia Rondo EX V6
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Uhhh, guys, you know when I say 52,000 I really mean 52,000 KM. That means 32,300 miles (approx) Seems a little early to me. I replaced the struts on my Mazda MX6, with lowering Tokico's and then preceded to drive the car for another 100,000 km without issue. I'm not trying to rip off KIA, they have been very good to me, but I am getting tired of having to go back in every week. I will ask about the bushings, and talk about the strut assemblies. My warranty runs out about may of 2013, so I have to get this sorted out now.
 

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2008 Kia Rondo EX V6
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So, back from the garage. The mechanic came out for a test drive, said he heard the noise I was talking about (thank god, I'm not crazy) and put the car up on to the hoist. He checked everything, Stab Links, Bushings, Shocks, springs, and couldn't find anything wrong. The final conclusion was, it's the tires. Winter Nordics from CT. So I thought, what they hey, I need to change the winters, and put the summers on. I bought Micheline Primacy MXV4 tires, had them installed and voila! noise gone. The Mechanic also came up with a good description of what the sound, sounded like. "A ping pong ball, in a Tims cup.
 

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2007 KIA Carens 2l CRDi Automatic LS. KIA Picanto 1.1 LX
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Does anyone have any tips or pics/useful instructions for replacing the front lower suspension arm bushes. Actual operation or replacement bush types?

Any info appreciated, need to change for my MOT.
 

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04 Mercedes C230, 08 Rondo LX V6
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I put this in a different thread I guess, but I have installed 7 pass springs in my 5 pass Rondo. I watched the mech do the job; it is definitely NOT one for the DIYer!! I swapped the springs b/c I do some towing. No noticeable ride diff but the vehicle sat very slightly higher in the rear (I forget the actual #s). But my original springs had essentially no sag (as measured by their free length after removal).
 
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