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Steering

Steering on Course with Solid Suspensions

FAHREN bolsters their steering and suspension range in 2017 and provides some important tips on steering and suspension parts.

 

Fahren’s steering and suspension range continues to expand with over 40 new parts including:

·         FAS6158: Tie/track rod end LH/RH for Ford B-MAX (2012>)

·         FAS0083: Ball joint LH/RH for Mazda 3 (2009-2011)

·         FAS6155: Rack end/track rods for Vauxhall Combo 1.3 (2006-2011)

The range currently totals more than 475 parts with more added regularly.

BALL JOINTS

Ball joints are designed to make the connection between the axle wishbone and bearing hub. Car suspension systems tend to have two pairs of ball joints, upper and lower. The latter tending to wear out faster as they have to support the weight of the vehicle.

Ball joints should be able to move freely without excessive movement. So, key signs of ball joint failure include clicking or knocking noise when wheels are turning and/or a thud noise from the suspension when travelling over bumps.

SUSPENSION ARMS

Also known as wishbones and track control arms, suspension arms connect the chassis to the wheel hub. Problems can affect steering geometry, especially when bushes wear out. This causes unwanted movement, noise and increased tyre wear.

STABILISER LINKS/DROP LINKS

Stabiliser links connect the anti-roll bar to the wishbone, improving handling and shock absorption to keep the car from swaying too much when turning a corner.

Worn stabiliser links can affect steering, ride and fuel efficiency. Symptoms include creaking or screeching whilst passing road imperfections, wobbling, skipping and “dead zones” in steering. These symptoms should not be overlooked as broken stabiliser links can lead to loss of control.

TRACK ROD ENDS/TIE ROD ENDS

These join the steering rack to the wheel hub and include a joint to accommodate steering and suspension movement. Generally designed around a ball and tapered pin joint, the joint is protected by a rubber boot which needs to be MOT tested.

Bumpy road conditions and road crashes can make track rod ends susceptible to bending and breaking, causing the vehicle to pull to one side while driving, creating uneven tyre wear. The most noticeable symptom of a damaged track rod end is a knocking sound that comes from the front of the vehicle when driving slowly whilst making a sharp turn (i.e. manoeuvring into a parking spot).

TRACK RODS/INNER TIE RODS/RACK ENDS/AXIAL RODS

Attached to the ends of the steering racks and sealed with a gaiter or boot to protect the inner joint, track rods are secured by a locking nut and sometimes a split pin. This allows easy steering, ensuring that both front wheels are stable and properly aligned. The normal causes of failed track rods are the lack of lubrication, hitting a curb, road bumps and potholes.

COMMITMENT TO QUALITY

Fahren parts undergo various safety check during the manufacturing and assembly processes. Testing includes full tension, compression and hardness checks, weld penetration and porosity tests, paint or cataphoresis coating penetration tests.

Fahren’s extensive portfolio of more than 1,000 parts also include water pumps, wheel bearing kits, ignition coils, brake pads/shoes. With a 12,000 mile/12-month warranty. 

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