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Discussion Starter #1
I want to have good quality struts... Since mines are leaking and need to be replaced... Is there a big difference if I get the from the dealership ($162) vs. a generic kind at some German auto parts shop? ($90)? Thank you

 

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I think you should be more concerned about WHAT you buy; as opposed to WHERE you buy them from. I have been looking at suspension upgrades and replacement parts lately; the next question is, what are your goals with the new struts? :confused:

What qualities in your replacement struts do you want to end up with?

1. original quality and performance.

2. slight upgrade from oem using your original springs, stock height, etc.

3. performance upgrade; lowered stance

a. springs, struts, shocks kit

b. full coil over kit


I have been looking at Blauparts and germanautoparts; they have affordable kits, that are better then stock but still not expensive. From what I can ascertain; they look like a Bilstein and Sachs kits. The benefits of the kits; many times they come with all the parts you will need and in the case of Blauparts; many of the typical wear items that should be replaced but many times aren't, in your typical strut replacement situation. This all depends on how many miles are on the car and what is worn out but as the saying goes "if your in there"; you might as well do the job right and refresh the whole thing. It also; might be a good idea to take your car to a professional and have the whole thing evaluated; get their opinion on what needs to be replaced (if you don't feel like you have the ability to evaluate your own car).

German Auto Parts:

GermanAutoParts.com : Volkswagen New Beetle Suspension

suspension section to choose your applicaton:

GermanAutoParts.com : Volkswagen New Beetle Suspension

Blauparts:

Vw Beetle Struts - Vw Beetle Shocks - Vw Beetle Strut Shock Kit

http://www.blausportshocksstruts.co...etle_shock_shocks_absorbers_kit.shtml#fitment

The Blauparts kits; are very affordable! They actually cost less, then your dealer prices for two struts; you could have a whole replacement suspension kit with everything you need! According to the video; they are a upgrade from stock and have improved performance, while maintaining a stock height, road manners.

These are just two vendors; there are MANY others out there. To make everything even more confusing; you can look on tirerack for a list of struts available for your specific beetle.

Decide what your goals are and then that will guide you on what brand and specific type of struts or whole suspension kit to buy. Hope this helps! :)
 

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A bit confused here between the thread title and the attached picture??

As for struts, I would likely go with the Blauparts kit as it really has almost everything you need and the pricing is very attractive. Uppers strut bushing replacement is a MUST, easy to do when changing struts.

As for the picture you posted, this is of a torn CV axle boot. VERY common problem is the passenger side inner CV boot on these cars.

As for axles, Raxles.com has good pricing, VW also offers re-manufactured axles of good quality via the parts department. The VW reman axles are cost effective if you can get the parts department to give you wholesale or at least a 25% discount.

If you plan on replacing your axle(s), suggest you check the axle carefully for the part number. I was surprised my 10 year old car still had a large part number sticker on the axle shaft that was fully legible. VW had more axle combinations for these cars then they had engine combinations!! Make sure you verify the axle part number. DO NOT use the sub $150 cheap axle from your local auto parts store. You WILL be sorry if you go with the sub $150 axles.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
What?! They told me my struts were leaking and I thought it was this thing... They didn't really mention cv boots in my report. Darn
 

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OK, we to slow down here a bit and fully understand what we are dealing with.

1. OE struts are pretty wasted after about 50k miles on most all cars. The worse the roads, the more wasted the struts.

2. Struts are a big money maker for shops. It would be helpful if you would state how you determined the struts were leaking, what shop informed you. If a shop suggested you get struts and never really looked under the car and missed the CV joint that has failed, move on quickly.

3. Overall he CV boot/axle is likely a higher priority than struts at this point. Stay away from the $89 replacement axle shafts that parts stores offer, you will be sorry and you will have issues. I would contact Raxles, America's premier supplier of OE quality CV Axles and CV joints - Raxles Inc. and request a quote, the need to know the year, body style, engine and transmission type and number of speeds to quite what you need. In general terms a decent axle shaft will be in the $250-$275 range just for the part.

I am assuming the picture you posted is of the passenger side axle?? Usually on these cars the inner passenger side boot goes first, then the outer boot. The drivers side axle is shorter and for some reason the boots tend to last longer than the passenger side. But after about 7-10 years likely both sides will need to be replaced.

Not sure you are capable of any DIY??? You would be best served finding a VW specific shop as they will know all the pitfalls with these cars and likely can easily find the problems without looking too hard.

STAY AWAY from chain tire shops, these guy are always upselling and they usually have sub part technicians.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
So, you are suggesting I need to replace my axels? When I got an oil change- the VW dealership did a free visual inspection and stated my struts were a priorty. They mentioned my cv boots were fine. Not unless they broke after their inspection? So my plan is to replace my cv boot.. Inner and outer just to be safe. What about cv joints? Do I need to replace those? And the photo is actually the drivers side.
 

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It all depends on how quickly your caught it; mine split and they replaced the boots and I have been ok. However, you don't know if they have been damaged; once all the grease flies out and they get contaminated with dirt etc.... eventually, they will self destruct (because all the lubrication is gone; like a engine without oil). Of course; if you are paying for the labor and want to be proof positive everything will be ok, replacing the axle would totally eliminate any possible failure in the future. You might want to factor in wear; how many miles are on the car and are they the original axles? If you have a ton of miles on the car; replacing the axles might be a good move. It would be a shame to replace the boots and then have the cvs fail; then have to pay for labor twice. You really won't know the condition of the cvs; until the axle is removed; cvs taken apart, inspected, cleaned, evaluated; then they are pass/fail. At that point; I would see what the cost effectiveness of replacing the cvs are or buying a while new axle is; you just have to see how it all adds up at that point, what the bottom line is. Labor rates; can wipe out, whatever "savings" that you might be getting by "saving" the axle through replacing boots, cleaning, re-greasing etc. etc.; most of the time, replacing seems to be the most cost effective way to go these days. Get with whoever is doing the work and figure out; what is the most cost effective way to go is. Good luck and keep us posted; as things progress.
 

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So, you are suggesting I need to replace my axels? When I got an oil change- the VW dealership did a free visual inspection and stated my struts were a priorty. They mentioned my cv boots were fine. Not unless they broke after their inspection? So my plan is to replace my cv boot.. Inner and outer just to be safe. What about cv joints? Do I need to replace those? And the photo is actually the drivers side.
Likely the passenger side inner boot is as bad unless it had already been replaced.

Trust me on this, do not waste the time and money replacing the boots. There are FAR too many boot options for these cars and I have not found split boots for these axles and split boots have issues anyway. I was planning to replace just the boots, but had no real luck in finding quality boots, then the axle got damaged anyway. I now need to replace the drivers side next.

Just replace the axle(s) and move on, you will be happier in the end.

Raxles, America's premier supplier of OE quality CV Axles and CV joints - Raxles Inc. quoted me $224 per side on my 2003 with snap in axles.

Here is their quoted info:

"Thank you for you inquiry!

The axles for your 2003 Beetle 1.8 6Sp Tiptronic are $224.95 per side. We have them in stock.

Please keep in mind when comparing prices that at Raxles™ we use NEW outer AND inner joints on all of our VW/Audi axles. (An industry exclusive) (See our website 4 Good Reasons Why We Don't Grind .For further elaboration on this important fact).

We build these out of HD NEW components featuring OE “hollow” center shafts and using Amsoil Polymeric synthetic grease, ALL bolts/hardware, tools (triple square bit, allen bit, etc), torque specs, and the BEST (much longer lasting!) CV boots.

We charge no core charge "up front" and we include a UPS ARS pre-paid return label with your order. All Raxles™ axles feature the famous Raxles™ Lifetime Warranty."

Shipping was about $40 as I recall and this includes the return shipping for the core.

Stay away from the $100-$125 AutoZone, Advance, O'Rielly axles. Trust me on this!

If the dealer missed this bad CV boot when they were changing the oil, but recommended struts, I do not know what to tell you. If almost any front wheel drive VW drove up to me that was 7+ years older, I would not even have to get under the car and I would likely tell the owner they likely would need at least 1 axle and I would likely correct over 90% of the time.

As for struts, if the car has over 50k miles, it needs struts, leaking or not leaking. If the strut is leaking, it is WAY over due anyway.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
So I just replaced my whole driver side axel shaft. It included the cv boots inner and outer and the axel. Thank goodness I replaced it because my old was going to crack any minute. The cost was $66 USD and labor $70.





 

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I don't want to be a kill joy but I hope the quality of the $66 cv axle works out for you; the cheaper parts, tend to not last as long or potentially give people problems. Seeing how you have a 2.0L; it may not be as much of a issue compared to a 1.8T New Beetle. What is the part number of the axle and where did you buy it; does it have any brand name, marking, numbers or any identifying info on the box? keep us posted; on how they work out for you; price wise, you got away with the repair pretty cheap (especially, living in California)! :)
 

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Discussion Starter #13 (Edited)
Well I went to a Foriegn Auto Parts store... I asked for the driver shaft axel assembly and they gave me this matching my vehicles information such as a 2005, automatic and 6 speed. It comes with a warranty but I forgot how long it will last.

My mechanic replaced it for $70. He is a retired professional VW mechanic who used to work for the dealerships for 30 years. Once he tried to put it back on he had a hassle. He didn't know they changed it from bolts to just snapped on. He was like if I would have known I would have charged about $150. So I got a steal of a deal. Hopefully this part will last me long! It part is made from Surtrack

 
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