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My 2003 Civic (with 105k miles on it) recently had an oil change and brake work. At the time, the mechanic said an inspection showed the cars front and rear struts need to be replaced. Parts and labor together will cost $1,055 for this work. He said the replacement does not have to be done immediately (good thing!) but did not want me to wait more than three months. My questions: 1. I still do not understand what the struts are or what they do. 2. Does this price sound reasonable for this type of work? 3. I do not think the struts have ever required any work on this car before. Does this mean after replacing them the car will likely go another 100k miles before needing more struts replaced? ... I just want to know exactly what I am dealing with when spending $1,000. Thanks.

Answers from the Automotive Experts

Amanda Wetherill Holmes, Parts and Service Director and Vice President of Operations at Devon Hill BMW Maura, A Strut provides structural support for the cars suspension. If your struts are weak you will notice a little bit more of a bounce in your car when you are traveling down a bumpy road. When you have your struts replaced it is very important that they realign your car so make sure that is included in the price that they gave you. As for the price it sounds like a good deal to me! The struts are a wear and tear item they do not go by mileage so it would be hard for me to say that it would last another 100K. Cheers, Amanda

Donna Burmeister, Service Manager at Classic Nissan You might like to get a second opinion. Are they leaking? Does the vehicle bounce all over the road? If your answer to these questions are no. I would say unless there leaking you don't need them.

Suzanne Grego, Technician at City of Philadelphia Fleet Management Maura, The struts in a vehicle are part of the suspension and steering. A great site to check out is howstuffworks.com. Go to *under the hood* and check out exactly how struts work. It never hurts to shop around for the best price. Labor rates and parts prices vary in different parts of the country, so I would not be able to give you an accurate quote on the price. If you go to the Honda dealership, they will use parts made specifically for your vehicle. They may be a little more pricey, but are often worth it and usually come with a warranty on parts. Suzanne

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