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It drops like I don't have shocks. It only happens after the bump, not as I hit the bump. It sounds painful, and I only need a a small drop to feel it. Either I feel it or I don't - there is no in-between. I though it was the struts being hyper extended or hitting the max travel. It only happens when the wheels drops or is in the air. It has always been like this since the lift install, but only when I go off-roading or if hit a pothole I feel it. I though it was the soft dampers, but I don't think that anymore. My theory was that if the struts have an 8" travel, the neutral point/center is having 4" to collapse and another 4" to extend. Since I lifted the car, the struts now have only 2" to extend but 6" to collapse. So if I drive over and off a bump, the 2" is not enough to push the wheel down and fill the holes. Now, I am thinking that it might be more the end links cannot accommodate the angle at max extension. or maybe the CV joints are hitting max angle and max extension.

Nothing rattles, nothing feels lose. Here are a couple of pics, but nothing looks out of place. I do agree that the torsion beam doesn't like to bend; one rear wheel is always on the air because the wheel can't drop down (as with an independent rear suspension). I am going to take it to a 4x4 shop to have the car raised to see what they find. I might bite the bullet and buy some adjustable end links. IDK what else could it be. Bad alignment maybe? I get pressure codes when fast off-roading (by fast I mean 20 mph)
 

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Discussion Starter · #122 ·
That's a really unusual issue. Usually if the body drops as if there's no shocks you feel a bouncing effect after since springs are doing all the work and cant stabilize. Do you feel it focused in the front or rear or all around? I would also suggest to take a look at your rear shocks for any oil leaks from what i can see on the picture. It could be something where one side has failed and other is struggling too much to compensate seeing as your issue doesnt sound like a usual suspension one.
 

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That's a really unusual issue. Usually if the body drops as if there's no shocks you feel a bouncing effect after since springs are doing all the work and cant stabilize. Do you feel it focused in the front or rear or all around? I would also suggest to take a look at your rear shocks for any oil leaks from what i can see on the picture. It could be something where one side has failed and other is struggling too much to compensate seeing as your issue doesnt sound like a usual suspension one.
I doesn't feel like I don't have shocks. The ride is stable and the car turns fine. Maybe it is the struts stopping the down pressure caused by the coils after passing a bump.

I feel it on all 4 wheels, but more on the rear.

I can't find any other unibody SUV that people lift except Subarus, and those guys always change end links or change to a longer sway bar after a 2 or 3" if they use new coil or coil spacers. Jeep people do tend to install shock extender for 2" lifts, so I don't see why our car would be different.

I received a response from AutoExe about the adjustable end links, and their links are for lowering, not if a car is raised. My two options (assuming no parts are damaged) limit straps, or strut/shock extenders (What Jropes suggested)
 

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Give these a try,
I believe I will give this a try so that the shock is at it's proper travel starting point and keep the shock from topping out. Tema4x4 is the same brand that sells the rear coils extenders that SlyCoppers bought (I believe). The Up210 springs raised the rear about 40mm, so with 30mm the rear suspension should be almost back to it's default starting position. I don't know what to do about the fronts. What that company sells for the front are spacers, so that would lift the car more. I can put limit strap upfront to prevent any damage to the ball joints and call it day.
 

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Discussion Starter · #128 ·
I doesn't feel like I don't have shocks. The ride is stable and the car turns fine. Maybe it is the struts stopping the down pressure caused by the coils after passing a bump.

I feel it on all 4 wheels, but more on the rear.

I can't find any other unibody SUV that people lift except Subarus, and those guys always change end links or change to a longer sway bar after a 2 or 3" if they use new coil or coil spacers. Jeep people do tend to install shock extender for 2" lifts, so I don't see why our car would be different.

I received a response from AutoExe about the adjustable end links, and their links are for lowering, not if a car is raised. My two options (assuming no parts are damaged) limit straps, or strut/shock extenders (What Jropes suggested)
Endlink wise I would imagine its possible to use something from another car that might have one thats longer naturally or adjustable endlinks from something else as long as the head size fits. Theoretically it should be doable, but I dont have enough motivation to experiment at the moment since bought a house and am renovating my bank account to the ground lol
 

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Discussion Starter · #129 ·
23623

Apparently we share endlinks with ford escape and 'figo'
 

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since bought a house and am renovating my bank account to the ground lol
And also because you now drive a Wrangler, lol.

I didn't know that I could use end links for a ford escape. Great Find!!! I will try to find end links that are 2 inches shorter than stock.

I've seen a few longer sway bars available for the cx-3, but I am not sure if they would have that much of an effect. All Wrangler owners seem to take them off when they lift theirs cars.

I went ahead of myself and purchased the shock extenders from amazon (Thank you, Patricia). I hope that takes care of the rear suspension. I think I will buy shorter end links from an escape and see if that fixes the front suspension. If not, then I will install Limit Straps.

Thank you for your help! I appreciate it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #132 ·
And also because you now drive a Wrangler, lol.

I didn't know that I could use end links for a ford escape. Great Find!!! I will try to find end links that are 2 inches shorter than stock.

I've seen a few longer sway bars available for the cx-3, but I am not sure if they would have that much of an effect. All Wrangler owners seem to take them off when they lift theirs cars.

I went ahead of myself and purchased the shock extenders from amazon (Thank you, Patricia). I hope that takes care of the rear suspension. I think I will buy shorter end links from an escape and see if that fixes the front suspension. If not, then I will install Limit Straps.

Thank you for your help! I appreciate it.
Wrangler was sold not even after 2 months buying it lol the dealer sold me it with a faulty transfercase and basically long story short they did other repairs which were irrelevant and then refused to cover it even tho they said they would under their 60day warranty. Not worth going to court over it when the end result is just that on a car that was looking to be a money pit already haha. Cut mylosses really quick there
 

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Wrangler was sold not even after 2 months buying it lol the dealer sold me it with a faulty transfercase and basically long story short they did other repairs which were irrelevant and then refused to cover it even tho they said they would under their 60day warranty. Not worth going to court over it when the end result is just that on a car that was looking to be a money pit already haha. Cut mylosses really quick there
Sorry to hear that, Sly. Wrangler are a money pit though. I've had three so far and do not want another one unless is a second car. Good call on return it though.
You got me thinking into if longer sway bars would help. I think it might. I am definetly convinced that 2" coil lift should be follow with longer end links. It makes perfect sense.
The rear shock extenders would almost bring me back to stock travel, but maybe longer sway bars will help by not being as rigid as the OEMs. The lift is putting some pressure (they don't look horizontal).
For the front, I can seem to find any strut extenders, and but thanks to you, I was able to find an expensive but nice set of longer end links, they are not 2" longer but close, but if I add a 17mm longer sway bar (and less stiff), that might help the suspension articulate better. I am going down the rabbit hole! **** is getting expensive now!
 

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Here a text for site that explains my problems beautifully:
"other issue is that while driving you will encounter uneven bumps in the road. Without a sway bar the suspension acts fully independent of each side, which allows a single shock / damper to absorb and dampen oscilations without imparting significant loads on the other static dampers. This is an ideal setting for allowing the suspension to do it's job ... dampening oscillations and maintaining tire interface with the road surface. When you install a sway bar you are creating a second, direct load path for the connected corners. When the right front hits a bump, that force is now transmitted to the left front. This creates an unsettling effect compared to the first scenario as the suspension on two corners now reacts sharply to forces. This effect increases as the sway bar stiffness increases."

So lifting the car 2" placed more streets on the bar causing it to be more rigid. And eliminating 2" of down travel because I didn't put extenders makes the problems worse. No wonder I always have one wheel in air when trying to climb a hill. Because even after the lift the car feels solid stable when cornering on the freeway. I might try removing the sway bars altogether and see how it drives on the freeway before buying anything else (I will install the rear extenders though).

A sway bar disconnect kit would be heavenly ideal!
 

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Discussion Starter · #135 ·
Im curious how it would feel without a rear sway sway bar since the torsion beam setup convinced me it wouldnt make a difference during my struggled original rear spring install since there is no independent movement in the first place. Also keep in mind you are running ko2s which are not meant to be comfortable lol at 36 psi cold it felt like i was driving on rocks and the lift made it feel better than stock height since less rough impact felt in my experience.

Let us know how it turns out.
 

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I think I am screwed. Longer end links, shock extenders, and strut extenders will only make my problem worse. It is my CV and ball joints that are topping out. The more I increase the articulation, the more likely I will be to damage it. Seems like I will have to use limit straps and be settle for only 1 or 2 inches of down travel.

The post below explains exactly what I am going through. The OP of the post later corrects himself to address that the top out is not due to lack of down travel, but to CV joints maxing out. This happens only when the wheels are in the air (uncompressed).

 

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Discussion Starter · #137 · (Edited)
I think I am screwed. Longer end links, shock extenders, and strut extenders will only make my problem worse. It is my CV and ball joints that are topping out. The more I increase the articulation, the more likely I will be to damage it. Seems like I will have to use limit straps and be settle for only 1 or 2 inches of down travel.

The post below explains exactly what I am going through. The OP of the post later corrects himself to address that the top out is not due to lack of down travel, but to CV joints maxing out. This happens only when the wheels are in the air (uncompressed).

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So this is requires some clarification especially for new people reading this thread wondering about the lift etc. Nissan pathfinders etc have different suspension geometry than ours much like how the wrangler is cancerous in its suspension with the wobbly trackbar and lifting a wrangler for example requires about 2k in supporting mods. The biggest important factor for any car regardless of mods is what you are using it for. These guys are hitting hard offroad terrain and fully lifting/flexing suspension sides off of the ground and slamming it back. That will destroy anything whether stock or aftermarket. A lot of other people install mods on trucks jeepsbetc just to "flex on the street" and theyll most likely never see an issue because it isnt being abused to crazy terrain and high impact bumps/drops. Your query seems to be related to strict offroad usage since it seems rather doubtful that suspension is getting fully extended and dropped suddenly on everyday road travel.

That being said its difficult to compare our situation to theirs. Like we said before swaybar and endlink and torsion beam already cap the cars suspension travel so its really difficult to fully extend and top out the suspension in cars to the point we hit catastrophic failure because it wouldve already happened by now. Yes there is more angle on the cv joint but that is tobe expected and there is usually an allowance for change as happens during normal driving conditions (keyword normal). Thankfully during the last year I have not noticed any additional wear or damage to the cv/boot but thats another component in general with different science than a shock/strut.

With regards to the shock I would suggest follow your intuition and if anything you can always uninstall the rear extenders. Again do not take much note from other car forums on such things without taking into consideration their specific setup. While some stuff might be accurate its intended to be specifically for their application and vehicle in a given context. I dont remember what suspension setup a pathfinder has but i believe theirs allows for some suspension flex which ours does not. Flexing will cause way more damage to cv and shocks especially when hitting hard terrain. Our rear keeps things together to somewhat avoid that but then again our cars were never meant to go offroad in the first place lol. Our front isnt as free as it could be either since we dont have a wide range of travel there either otherwise we destroy our fenders.
 

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Agree. To clarify, for street driving or casual off-roading lifting the car 2" should not be an issue. The damage that I am trying to avoid is when there is an abrupt unloading (when a wheels is on the air) causing CV or ball joint damage. Also, for an AWD, wheels on the air messes up the AWD because power goes to the other wheel bla bla...

"These guys are hitting hard offroad terrain and fully lifting/flexing suspension sides off of the ground and slamming it back." I am too. The only difference is that I don't do any rock crawling or any of that stuff, but the trail's terrain I drive is pretty violent to the point that I will always have one wheel on the air. The majority of the 1-hour drive I spend it mostly on 1st gear and some 2nd gear. I never switch to 3rd. The distance of that 1-hour off-road drive is 7 miles (to visit my parents, not for fun).

Anyway, I had already purchased this morning a new set of coil spring (the +25- +35mm) to lower my car a bit (impulsive!). The lost inch I would eventually replace with new taller tires. I am getting desperate here, but I also getting scared. I don't want to bust a CV joint ($$$) while off-roading.

I learned a few things yesterday:
  • OEM end links length is 250mm according to Autozone (based on Moog #K80104 OEM replacement)
  • Ford Escape (2001-2004) end links are the same part number as above.
  • Cx-5 and Cx-9 are 293mm (1.69 in) and same design it should bolt right in.
  • Hardrace sells adjustable end links for cx-3 and cx-5. Their adjustable end links range is, for the cx-3 is 240-279 mm, and for the cx-5, range: 280-319 mm.
My near future plans:
  • I already purchased rear shock extenders and should arrive in about two weeks (from Russia :S). However, this will not fix the top out issue, if the rear sway bar is causing the top out. Does the cx-3 have rear end links? I need to take a peek.
  • I will purchase cx-5 end links to give the front sway bar some breathing room. Hopefully I don't damage the CV joints.
  • Purchase 2" rod strut extenders.
My remaining concerns are:
  • If I do install longer end links, what will tap out my suspension if not the sway bar, hopefully the struts and not the CV joints.
  • I am afraid to add 2" rod extension to the strut to level the front struts in order to regain those 2" of lost down travel, because if I do this, then the struts won't cause the top out, neither the sway bar, so it would be the CV joints that would case the top out. If that is the case, limit straps would be required.
  • On the OEM suspension, if would where to jump in the air, what would cause the top out? struts or sway bar?
The off-road world is so much more complicated than the street. I had no idea the amount of geometry involved in lifting cars.
 

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Discussion Starter · #139 · (Edited)
I still cant get over using 02 ford escape endlinks lol. Yea you are on the more abusive end of offroading the cx3 so its gonna cause wear regardless of the quality of mods/parts etc. Thats also one of the reasons why jeeps are indeed money pits aside form papa chrysler building trash in general since even upgraded offroad/lift parts easily break and why most lifted trucks/jeeps dont actually do any offroading and just flex. Honestly you would be putting stress on cv/ball joints regardless of lift just driving in that terrain.

IIRC when I installed the springs, the endlinks/swaybar would max before the shocks I believe. This might also be like standard spec code or something. The fully extended shock has quite a bit of distance and even if it was 'maxed' it would more likely be ripped into 2 since it cant hold together a body-drivetrain joint of dead weight pulling it apart. It can handle the joint in compression but stretched out is gonna pull it apart. Furthermore the brake lines would pull off too under most extreme condition especially with the lift already pulling some of the slack. Your safeguard right now is the sway/endlink.
(*Note: I have no idea if our struts are manufactured to be able to handle the cx-3 weight stretched apart including the lift springs pushing it further but I would not trust it since its very unlikely and presuming its safe when theres no supporting data is not a good idea, better to prepare for worst case)

While on that subject, one of the things that needs to be done on jeeps when lifting past 1.5" even after 1" really is brake line extenders. We arent at that level yet on the cx-3 but with changing the travel of the swaybar + longer endlink + lift spring + shock extender, the brake line is going to be the next point of concern.

Personally I would not pursue the endlink/sway scenario until brake line situation is addressed but thats just a side effect paranoia after repairing alot of bs on the jeep :/
 

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Yea you are on the more abusive end of offroading the cx3 so its gonna cause wear regardless of the quality of mods/parts etc." Exactly, and for that reason alone I now want to lower my car a bit. All parts can take abuse (up to a point) if it is between their operating range, but it is when parts have work outside their range that start to fall apart. Subaru forums are filled with posts "CV joints fail after 2 in lift!".

"IIRC when I installed the springs, the endlinks/swaybar would max before the shocks I believe. " That is what I though too, thanks for confirming.

I have a few updates:
  • my 4x4 shop will try to fabricate an adaptor to allow me to install longer rear shocks. That means I won't be using the Amazon (Tema4x4) rear shock extenders. I might put the extenders and wait for the rear shocks to fail (I am at 30,000 miles now).
  • For the front, I was able to find a shift knob extender that is the same thread size of the KYB struts (M12x1.25).
  • I purchased Hardrace adjustable front end links (adjustable from 280mm to 319mm)
  • I want to cut the front springs to lower them about 1 inch, but I don't think I will be able to do that because of the pig tail. If that is the case, I will buy the other Up210 springs that are shorter (+25 - +35mm).
"While on that subject, one of the things that needs to be done on jeeps when lifting past 1.5" even after 1" really is brake line extenders. We aren't at that level yet on the cx-3 but with changing the travel of the swaybar + longer end link + lift spring + shock extender, the brake line is going to be the next point of concern. " I'll keep it mind I hadn't though of that.

Here is a picture of this Sunday
23631
Tire Wheel Vehicle Automotive design Automotive exterior
 
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