So, your car is aging and you are now actively looking to take care of it in more ways than one. Well, you are not the only one confused about the various car parts and which ones you should tackle first. It is a common theme. As you continuously use the car, it is natural for breakdowns to occur. The wear and tear on parts is not something you can stop. Sure, you can delay it to a certain extent but replacement is inevitable.
Today, we are going to help you with one such part for your car, and especially if your car is a Toyota, this guide is for you. The part in question is a strut, a key component for any car. If your car has clocked in thousands of miles already, read on and find out what you can do about struts, and when you can replace them. We bring to focus one brand, FCS strut, and FCS Strut review, why they might not be a great solution despite their popularity.
Jump ahead to..
What are struts?
Before we dive in, it is important to answer the question, what exactly are struts?
Each car is made up of multiple components, some smaller than others but despite the size, they have an important function. A strut is one such component. The strut has one job, to support the weight of the car. The majority of modern-day cars use struts as points of connection between the wheel and the vehicle body. Almost all modern-day suspensions utilize some form of struts or the other. Front-wheel drive cars use it at the front end of the chassis. Struts ensure that the car can absorb impacts all the while delivering a smooth ride.
A strut assembly consists of two parts, the coil spring, whose primary job is to support the height, and weight of the vehicle, and stabilize it. The second part is the shock absorber, which absorbs the vibrations from the roads and swallows’ bumps. There are other even smaller components on a strut such as the bearing, the steering knuckle, and the spring seats.
When do you need to get them replaced?
As we already alluded to the fact that parts need replacement due to wear and tear, a strut has a limited lifespan. And your car will suffer a lot if you don’t get them replaced in due time. Every time you give your car for servicing, take an update from the mechanic. Authorized technicians can help take a closer look at your car for the condition of your struts along with brake and tire inspection.
Ideally, if your car has done between 60,000 to 80,000 miles, it might be a good idea to get them replaced. But this threshold also depends on the usage. If your car is not carrying light loads, you don’t need to worry too much. On the other hand, if you are carrying a lot heavier loads, it is recommended that you get it replaced earlier.
So, what are the indicators you might need struts to be replaced?
Well, firstly your ride will be harsher and you will start noticing vibrations over bumps. Your tires will also start wearing out very quickly. The wheels start wobbling more when you brake, the car sways, and the body rolls much more when you turn. Additionally, if you start noticing leaks of hydraulic fluid under the tire well, it is time to get them replaced.
What are FCS Struts?
There are all kinds of brands out there and for some buyers, the budget might be on the lower end. For them, FCS Struts are the go-to option. They are on the cheaper end of the spectrum and for good reason. FCS struts fit most older Toyotas relatively well but their quality might push you to go around looking for alternatives. The ride height will not noticeably increase as they are not OEM and that leaves you wanting more. FCS Struts are at least 1/3rd the price of other options and for good reason.
You will be saving money but at what cost? The Chinese make means that quality wise they will never stand up to other brands. The big question is can you trust them and should you buy them?
Can you trust them?
If the sole purpose is to save money and to see how long the car can run, sure, for $50 you can trust FCS Struts. But given the multitude of negative FCS Strut review out there, you can do better.
The only reason you might be looking at FCS Struts is the money factor. And the fact that your car is by no means young. If you just need something temporary, then and only then should you look at FCS.
While the alternatives cost significantly more, you are also getting struts of invariably better quality. FCS Strut review points out that they are fine for 10,000-20,000 Km. But there is no evidence that anything more and the car will run just fine.
Moreover, it is noisy. Almost every single FCS Strut review points out the fact that noise levels increase drastically once you install and use them. The ride also feels different. The issues don’t dissipate. But then, what are the alternatives?
What are other Alternatives?
But you want alternatives and we sure have some. Other brands provide much better struts if we’re talking, however, they are not cheap.
- KYB is a great brand that makes high-quality struts. The advantage of using KYB struts is that if your Toyota is more than a decade old, they use KYB struts. They do cost at least $100, more than double the price of the ever-reliable FCS Struts. However, you will not regret the quality. Your car will feel much smoother, the ride height will be restored to almost factory settings, and you will not face issues for a long time.
- Monroe and Gabriel: These two brands have quality struts, but they also cost around the same price as KYB. We are clubbing these together because they also have seasonal discounts and by availing them, you can get them for lesser than KYB struts.
- Bilstein and Koni: On the more expensive end of the spectrum, getting these would mean you want to use your car for as long as possible. They are far more expensive than KYB but you do get a fantastic quality part.
FCS Struts are not the best option. There are plenty of other options that, despite the cost justify the means. Many an FCS Strut review has proven time and again that being cheap and skimping out on a few extra bucks does not necessarily help.
We recommend purchasing KYB Struts. They are the ideal replacement strut brand for your old Toyota when you factor in the budget and the utility.