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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
My 2007 V8 Sport (~190K KM) is very sensitive when driving in crosswinds on the highway, which would be hard to keep it tracking. I have done several alignments and it is still without any improvement.

I am planning to replace the front strut (going with Bilstein B4), what else I need to replace/update to improve the ride and crosswinds issues

I appreciate any guidance here.
 

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If you haven't yet and depending on mileage or kilometers, entire front-end rebuild. Struts, mounts, spring pads, ball joints, quality lower control arms, and maybe sway bar links. I would also use the 2009+ alignment specs which sets the wheels toe'd-in (positive toe value), which gives better straight-line stability, helping resist the crosswinds. The pre-2009 alignment specs are toe'd out, which give better turn-in at the expense of straight-line stability & resistance to crosswinds.

Since this is for your V8 Sport, if I may make a suggestion. My XC90 uses the 2009+ spec, but at a reduced total toe. If you want more stability, but also want to keep some good turn-in, then tell the alignment shop to do a total toe-in of between +0.08 to +0.12; 2009+ Volvo spec is +0.16 +/- 0.2. I don't regret reducing total toe one bit. Your tires will be happier too since they will be pointed a little straighter.

One last thing to look at is the rear alignment. Ensure the shop is doing a complete 4 wheel alignment as the rear can feel loose with crosswinds if the toe-in is out of spec or not aligned. People often mistaken the "rear steering" as front-end loosness.

https://workshop-manuals.com/volvo/...spension_alignment_specifications/page_17552/ Toe specs

Remember, when changing suspension components and changing alignment, the steering might still feel misaligned for a little time. That is because tires become worn to the previous alignment. So, give it 500-1000 miles (not sure what that is is kilometers) for the tires to wear into the new suspension angles. After an alignment, if the vehicle floats (not using power or brakes) straight, then the alignment is probably good.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
If you haven't yet and depending on mileage or kilometers, entire front-end rebuild. Struts, mounts, spring pads, ball joints, quality lower control arms, and maybe sway bar links. I would also use the 2009+ alignment specs which sets the wheels toe'd-in (positive toe value), which gives better straight-line stability, helping resist the crosswinds. The pre-2009 alignment specs are toe'd out, which give better turn-in at the expense of straight-line stability & resistance to crosswinds.

Since this is for your V8 Sport, if I may make a suggestion. My XC90 uses the 2009+ spec, but at a reduced total toe. If you want more stability, but also want to keep some good turn-in, then tell the alignment shop to do a total toe-in of between +0.08 to +0.12; 2009+ Volvo spec is +0.16 +/- 0.2. I don't regret reducing total toe one bit. Your tires will be happier too since they will be pointed a little straighter.

One last thing to look at is the rear alignment. Ensure the shop is doing a complete 4 wheel alignment as the rear can feel loose with crosswinds if the toe-in is out of spec or not aligned. People often mistaken the "rear steering" as front-end loosness.

https://workshop-manuals.com/volvo/...spension_alignment_specifications/page_17552/ Toe specs

Remember, when changing suspension components and changing alignment, the steering might still feel misaligned for a little time. That is because tires become worn to the previous alignment. So, give it 500-1000 miles (not sure what that is is kilometers) for the tires to wear into the new suspension angles. After an alignment, if the vehicle floats (not using power or brakes) straight, then the alignment is probably good.
Thank you for your inputs,

I will plan to get the front-end rebuild as suggested, it actually been awhile for such update

Anything at rear-end for rebuild?


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Thank you for your inputs,

I will plan to get the front-end rebuild as suggested, it actually been awhile for such update

Anything at rear-end for rebuild?
There are a few good posts about the rear trailing arm bushing that you can search for. In my 2008, the bushing had cut-outs for flex. In later years, the bushing was updated to a solid rubber bushing. This helps handling not only because it is newer, but the solid bushing reduces flex and gives a more direct feel. You will notice more resistance to crosswinds and better handling.
 

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Check your tire pressure. Needs to be 39psi.
 

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In addition to the Bilstein struts, IPD sway bars also helped a lot with body roll. With that plus front end parts in good repair I don't notice cross winds.
 

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Got another one of these I think- https://forums.swedespeed.com/showthread.php?603535-Replacing-rear-suspension-bushings , maybe the two of you can figure out the commonalities with the instability and in turn the root cause. I like the newer "Ford" bushings, did both vehicles in 2016. They work great, maybe stiffen up the rear a bit.
Yeah, that was me, and this thread sounds awfully familiar. I did a little road-testing as recommended in that thread, and found very little difference in tracking between coasting and WOT at 70+ mph. But I have also been noticing a definite brake vibration from the right front when braking from freeway speed (again, 70 or so), and under low-speed braking while turning right. Much fainter vibration is present under low-speed left-turn braking.

Since control arms are on the table, I should note that back in the spring I redid the bushings and ball joints on both sides (Lemforder bushings, Moog ball joints)...the hole for the forward bushing on the right side was slightly ovaled, requiring a little extra work from the shop that pressed them in for me. (I probably should have replaced the arm at that time, but was under time pressure to get the vehicle back on the road). I didn't notice the crosswind issue (or the brake vibration) for a few months afterward, but now I'm wondering if the control arm itself is the problem - if the bushing receiver was distorted, the geometry of the arm could be out of whack too, causing one of my six-month-old bushings or ball joint to fail early. Does that seem plausible? New LCA with bushings pre-installed would not be a major cost....

Side note for the OP - I installed Bilstein B4s up front two years ago, and Volvo Nivomats in the rear last year. More knowledgeable posters than me have suggested that mixing aftermarket and OEM struts might be related to my crosswind issue (which sounds a LOT like what you describe). I'm hoping that's not the case (a new LCA or two would be cheaper than new Volvo struts), but it's been mentioned as a possibility.
 

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Yeah, that was me, and this thread sounds awfully familiar. I did a little road-testing as recommended in that thread, and found very little difference in tracking between coasting and WOT at 70+ mph. But I have also been noticing a definite brake vibration from the right front when braking from freeway speed (again, 70 or so), and under low-speed braking while turning right. Much fainter vibration is present under low-speed left-turn braking.

Since control arms are on the table, I should note that back in the spring I redid the bushings and ball joints on both sides (Lemforder bushings, Moog ball joints)...the hole for the forward bushing on the right side was slightly ovaled, requiring a little extra work from the shop that pressed them in for me. (I probably should have replaced the arm at that time, but was under time pressure to get the vehicle back on the road). I didn't notice the crosswind issue (or the brake vibration) for a few months afterward, but now I'm wondering if the control arm itself is the problem - if the bushing receiver was distorted, the geometry of the arm could be out of whack too, causing one of my six-month-old bushings or ball joint to fail early. Does that seem plausible? New LCA with bushings pre-installed would not be a major cost....

Side note for the OP - I installed Bilstein B4s up front two years ago, and Volvo Nivomats in the rear last year. More knowledgeable posters than me have suggested that mixing aftermarket and OEM struts might be related to my crosswind issue (which sounds a LOT like what you describe). I'm hoping that's not the case (a new LCA or two would be cheaper than new Volvo struts), but it's been mentioned as a possibility.

I have the Bilsteins up front and Nivotmats in the rear and have no problem.
 

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Although a 3.2, I also have Bilstein B4s upfront and Nivomats in the rear and it improved crosswind drivability.

The rubber bushing replacements don't have to be perfectly circle for the control arm as the rubber is flexible and can distort some after they are produced. This would not cause premature failure. I am suspecting the Lemforder brand for these bushings are bad. Go with original Volvo or polyurethane. I posted some real-world experiences with the Lemforder rubber quality nowadays: https://forums.swedespeed.com/showt...or-the-LCA-s&p=7399177&viewfull=1#post7399177

For an additional $20 each side, you can get quality you can trust with original Volvo: https://www.fcpeuro.com/products/vo...arm-bushing-front-lower-xc90-genuine-31277881
Here's the trailing arm bushing, notice it is solid: https://www.fcpeuro.com/products/volvo-suspension-control-arm-bushing-xc90-31277893
 

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...... I am suspecting the Lemforder brand for these bushings are bad. Go with original Volvo or polyurethane. I posted some real-world experiences with the Lemforder rubber quality nowadays: https://forums.swedespeed.com/showt...or-the-LCA-s&p=7399177&viewfull=1#post7399177....
Very interesting info there. I thought Lemforder had a pretty good reputation....maybe not so much.

I figure at this point I'll have one of my independents take a look before I start throwing parts in, but this answer feels right. Assuming that it's the bushings (or a bushing), I'm going to give some serious thought to just swapping in new arms on both sides with bushings pre-installed, since I'm skeptical of the right side (seems like whatever distorted the bushing receiver could also have affected the arm geometry) and would have to pay to have new bushings pressed in anyway if I keep the old arms. Anybody have experience with the ipd arm kit? Based on the reputation of their anti-roll bars, I'd feel pretty comfortable with this kit, and I like the price.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
So here is the plan, I managed to purchase the following and planned to install them next week:

2 Front struts for front suspension (Bilstein B4)
2 Front Stabilizer End Links (Lemforder)
2 Rear Stabilizer End Links (Meyle)
2 Front Ball Joint (Lemforder)

and also planning to Replace the Tailing Bushings and new brake pads and rotors all around.

Anything else I should look to replace or update while I am there, the lower control arms bushings were replaced couple of years ago along with tie rods.
 

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Not sure how many miles you put on the new-ish bushings or what brands, but they could still go bad even if they are the original Volvo brand. Winters are rough on those bushings.

Have you also purchased new strut mounts and spring pads?
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
I will inspect the lower control arm bushings and will replace them if needed.

Yes I did purchase the strut mount and springs pads (Volvo brand)
 

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I will inspect the lower control arm bushings and will replace them if needed.
With the car on the ground, have someone watch the control arms while you rock the steering wheel back and forth. The bushings may look good but still allow a lot of movement.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
By the way what is brand recommendation for strut mounts and spring seat? Should I get Volvo OEM, Lemforder, or Myle, etc.




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By the way what is brand recommendation for strut mounts and spring seat? Should I get Volvo OEM, Lemforder, or Myle, etc.

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You cannot go wrong with original Volvo.
 
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