Good Vibrations with Febi Rubber-Metal Parts
Due to the increasing complexity of the vehicle chassis, more importance is being placed on rubber-metal parts, such as mountings for control arms, stabilisers, engine, gearbox and strut top mountings. These parts ensure that all components are solidly connected to the chassis; additionally, mounting bushes provide strong connection points between the components and firmly fix them into position.
Rubber-metal parts are required to:
· dampen vibrations and absorb bumps on uneven road surfaces
· help to maintain proper alignment and drive torque
· contribute significantly in increasing driving comfort and
· improve steering and vehicle stability during braking
and evasive manoeuvres
The elastomers used in the production of rubber-metal parts are matched precisely to the technical requirements and loads of their specific fitting position. This allows parts like the antiroll bar bushes to twist and flex as needed whilst remaining stable. Despite all of this, passive rubber-metal components cannot absorb all of the vibrations within the chassis. As a result, hydraulically dampening elastomeric bearings or ‘hydromounts’ were developed, which enable the isolation and dampening of vibrations.
HYDROMOUNTS – WHAT AND WHY
A hydromount consists of a tubular metal inner part, which is connected to a specially shaped
rubber body and a metal outer sleeve. The specially shaped rubber has embedded fluid chambers and flow channels.
If parts with a solid rubber core are used instead of hydromounts, solely with durability in mind, they won’t absorb the vibrations completely, but instead transfer it to the surrounding chassis components. This results in more noticeable vibrations and louder noise disruption.
Hydromounts which use the specific grade of rubber and engineered metal components, vulcanised in the correct way, are the only way to maintain the vibration absorption and the acoustic characteristics of the vehicle.
If a rigid mount is fitted instead of a hydromount, the effect desired by the manufacturer, e.g. a change in the toe-in on braking is significantly reduced. Although the parts may last longer, they can increase the likelihood of an accident.
It is important that extra attention is paid to the correct fitting position with hydromounts due to the alignment of the flow channels.
Damaged rubber-metal parts can lead to:
· uneven tyre wear
· reduced stability
· excess movement of steering components
For such small objects, rubber-metal parts are crucial for safe driving and any signs of wear should lead to an immediate replacement. As most rubber-metal parts can appear identical to the OE, caution must be exercised when choosing a replacement. A cross-section of the part could reveal that the similarities are only skin deep; some suppliers rely on a solid rubber core which does not have the precise vibration, noise-reducing or elasto-kinematic potential of hydromounts.
RELY ON FEBI
The febi range of tested, OE matching quality rubber-metal parts comprises:
· ProKits that include all the necessary mounting rubber metal bushes, along with the bolts and nuts to carry out a fast and professional repair.
· 2,000+ rubber-metal parts for a variety of makes and models, servicing millions of vehicles on UK roads.