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Old October 10th, 2018, 04:07   #1
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Default Curb Strike-Bent tie rod.

I have not-so-great dash cam footage of me sliding (front end- understeer) on a newly wet (oily and slippery) road, as I'm entering an on-ramp.

Apparently 24 mph is too fast to take a turn in the rain, where oil seems to have percolated up from the road surface.

All that to say- I smacked the curb and bounced off.

Currently the car pulls right, and the steering wheel is turned left at 20 or so degrees from top dead center.

My ABS light blinked a few times as I drove home.

Tomorrow will be spent lifting the car, and replacing a tie-rod end, and checking to see if the strut is damaged, or if anything else needs fixing. The bottom of the tire seems to be more "in" than the top, so I'll start with the tie rod and go from there. Hopefully it's not a steering rack or strut.

No question- just had to vent.
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Old October 10th, 2018, 04:47   #2
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Sounds like it is more than a tie rod. *Usually* the strut and/or the carrier bends before the strut saddle in the body does. Which is good because those items are easily replaced. Straightening the body not so much.
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Old October 10th, 2018, 06:22   #3
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sounds like you need good tires. never had that issue

i did about the same thing but at more like 40

your probably going to find that your control arm is bent, the wheel is not true, strut bearing bushing is cracked, and the axle is probably bent as well.
The tie rod might be 100% fine and its the control arm .
let us know when you get her on the lift.
I know that pain.
Lucky for us, these parts are cheep at a junkyard and i had mine back on the road in 8 hours the next day.
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Old October 10th, 2018, 08:44   #4
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Originally Posted by oilhammer View Post
Sounds like it is more than a tie rod. *Usually* the strut and/or the carrier bends before the strut saddle in the body does. Which is good because those items are easily replaced. Straightening the body not so much.
Sounds about right.
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Old October 10th, 2018, 23:38   #5
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Wife tried that on the 05 golf a couple times. Snow took her to the ditch backwards with 2 of the 4 kids in the back. They said it was NOT fun. Ended up bending the tie rod and it broke in the ditch as I was moving the steering wheel and the slush had turned to ice I found. Pulled out and tow dollied home and replaced the tie rod.

Next winter she tried and failed to skate down the steepest hill in town this time without kids to go get there girl scout candy on the first snow/ice storm of the season. I was going to put snow tires on that afternoon. Totalled the car with two airbags going off from hitting the curb on the right side as she turned. Just put new koni reds in the week before along with a lift kit. I think the lift kit saved her as the right wheels buckled and jumped the curb the left wheels also caught the curb and hooked on. House was a out 6 feet below the curb so the right tires where plenty low. The lift had the tires low enough to remain hooked as the metal skid plate was holding the center of the car. Wife was ok and I fixed it all - used rim to match the set, used axle and hub, swapped shocks off the 04 golf that I am fixing from an engine fire and put the koni orange on the 04 and threw the new bent reds away, new swing arm with the ball joint and tt bushings already in, new rear axle. Around $1500 and I was good to go. Took a bit to find the hubs bent but laying on the ground eyeballing it o could tell something wasn't right. Once the alignment came back good I fixed the airbags. Had to make sure the body was good yet. Insurance paid enough I figured I owed the old girl a try at least and it worked. Fully insured again with enough spare money to fix the 05 wagon that my brother blew the timing belt on at 80k miles. He had the belt at home and was going to change that night.

Good luck. Moral of my story the body was ok after all that. Fyi it was totalled when I bought it too and i hammered things back out. Still safe and drives straight. Bigger issue is the rust forming around the underside and rear fenders. Twice totalled car and fully insured still.

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Originally Posted by rmchambers
I really had no idea that VW dealerships were so awful to go to, they sound like undertakers cos everything that goes in there winds up dead.
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Old October 11th, 2018, 05:57   #6
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Smacked a curb really hard and it bent the R/H LCA and ball joint and damaged the rim. Did not damage the wheel bearing, wheel bearing housing, tie rod or the strut.

My tire shop fixed it for me and sourced the LCA and ball joint from O'Reilly's and the ball joint started making a popping sound within 25K miles of replacement. As a point of reference, the L/H factory ball joint is still perfectly fine at 186K miles.

Insist on Lemforder replacement parts as they are one of several OEM supplier and are not as expensive as what a dealer will sell you. Price example (not necessarily the fitment for your car): https://www.idparts.com/ball-joint-r...k6-p-4029.html
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Last edited by Ol'Rattler; October 11th, 2018 at 06:06.
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Old October 11th, 2018, 17:24   #7
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Originally Posted by Ol'Rattler View Post
Smacked a curb really hard and it bent the R/H LCA and ball joint and damaged the rim. Did not damage the wheel bearing, wheel bearing housing, tie rod or the strut.
All MK2/3 front wheel drives I believe were engineered to actually do just that. I was told it absorbs the energy without bending the subframe up to a limit of course, don't know if mk4s were designed for that but LCAs haven't changed much. You'd be surprised how many Gtis, Corrados and Vr6s smashed LCAs I used to see in the shop. LCAs and tie rods
I'll also second lemforder, done several suspension refreshes with their parts and they don't seem ever to skimp on quality and their hard rubber lasts. R32/tt rears are good upgrade too
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Old October 13th, 2018, 17:38   #8
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OK- Here's the prognosis.

1.5 year old Passat Bought new in May 2017. 94,000 miles. I honestly think I hit an oil/water patch as it had just started raining and the smooth concrete surface just amplified the problem. I drive enough not to be stupid on the road. (Usually).

First to Mongler: The tires are Continental Pure Contact. 50,000 miles on them but with 4/32's of tread left. Could they go to their rated 70,000 miles? Probably, but you're right, it's probably time to replace them.


According to my former VW Dealership mechanic who owns his own Shop and took a look at it:

The strut took most of the impact getting shoved up as the car jumped on to the 10" curb. Strangely, also The strut mount is fine, and the Tie Rod is fine. What I thought was a bent tie rod end was actually the design of the slightly curved tie rod end. That's normal. The steering knuckle shows a fracture, and since I'm replacing the steering knuckle, I opted to buy a new wheel bearing assembly too.

As long as I've got to take the struts out, I've decided to upgrade the suspension with Koni Special Active Struts. And as long as I'm upgrading the fronts, I've decided to do the back shocks too.

Tomorrow I'm putting the shocks on the back, myself, and redoing the brakes that I ordered early last week before the curb strike.

Monday the car is going in the shop for the Strut, Knuckle and Bearing replacement.

I'll post about how it feels on with the Special Active struts next week sometime.
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