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Old 03-20-2014, 09:29 PM   #1 (permalink)
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02 Civic - '02 Honda Civic LX
90 day: 40.32 mpg (US)
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02 Civic Suspension Upgrade

This seems like the best forum for the topic. If not, Mods, please put it in the right place.

When I got my Civic a few months ago, it felt like the shocks were wore out (rough over bumps, noisy, and slight steering wheel vibration). After some research, and jacking the car up and taking a better look, I figured out that the shocks are probably okay for now. It's the other stuff that's the problem. The control arm bushings are shot, as well as the ball joints, sway bar end links, and one tie rod end. Parts arrived this week, and I plan to replace all the worn stuff this weekend.

So, how much do ya'll think the loose suspension is negatively affecting MPGs? I've got 9-10 tanks worth of MPG data. I can't help but think it's got to improve at least a little bit. I'll find out after I get things replaced. Not gonna do the AAABBBAAA testing on this one.


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Old 03-20-2014, 10:18 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Lean and Mean - '98 Honda Civic HX
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The suspension can effect fuel economy if the alignment was off. Especially the toe setting. If your bushings and ball joints are bad it could be moving the alignment slightly as you are driving (steering wheel vibration, also tire wear are signs). As far as how much it can effect fuel economy, probably not a huge amount. You might see an improvement but well within the range of other variables like weather, driving habits, etc. If your alignment was way off you would have a hard time driving the car straight. Something like that may have a bigger impact.
1998 Honda Civic HX - My Project Thread

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Old 03-21-2014, 12:00 AM   #3 (permalink)
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How many miles on this car? An 02' sounds like it's ready for new shocks.

I was skeptical about the shocks thing but on Spyderchat people swore that the ride of even 50k old shocks is much worse. I decided why not, swapped them for new 10% stiffer shocks + 25% stiffer lowering springs, and the ride quality turned out...better? It moves over small bumps more but soaks the bigger ones up much better. I might be biased because I kind of like how it's stiffer and jittery. Change the shocks, and lower it a little! Stiffer springs make cornering much more confidence inspiring, and the vacuum readings at cruise seem to be marginally higher.

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