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Vauxhall Vectra Suspension Failiure


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Hi, I own a 54 reg. Vauxhall Vectra 1.9 CDTi Elite . I have owned the vehicle since it was 6 months old with no probs. My vehicle has covered just 26000 miles from new and has been serviced properly, only used as family car.

On 6th January 2007 I got into the vehicle which was parked on my driveway. I was with my wife and young family aged 6 and 3. As I started to move off, I heard a crunching noise. I immediately stopped and examined the vehicle. I noticed the suspension on both sides had collapsed. The nearside front wheel was now resting on the wheel arch and the offside tyre was flat.

 

I live 200 yards from an independent garage and therefore asked for them to recover the vehicle and diagnose the problem. Both front springs had collapsed, the offside also puncturing through the tyre. They recovered the vehicle. This & the repair was £332. I've kept the failed springs.

I am concerned had this happened on a usual family motorway run, the results could have been catastrophic.

I have asked Vauxhall HQ for some money towards the repair and to highlight the probelem.

I am informed by the garage that such a double spring failure is unknown normally, particularly bearing in mind the age and mileage.

I wondered if anyone else had experienced similar issues with a vectra, or likewise any info. about similar experiences with other manufactureres. It has certainly knocked my confidence in the car.

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Hello and Welcome, mickey11.

 

 

The best Forum to ask your question is here.........

 

http://www.consumeractiongroup.co.uk/forum/garage-services/

 

 

You should get all the help you need.

 

Regards.

 

Scott.

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No problem, if I had a skooby about Suspension failure on Vauxhall Vectra's, I would have helped you even more.:p .

 
 

Any advice I give is honest and in good faith.:)

If in doubt, you should seek the opinion of a Qualified Professional.

If you can, please donate to this site.

Help keep it up and active, helping people like you.

If you no longer require help, please do what you can to help others

RIP: Rooster-UK - MARTIN3030 - cerberusalert

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My Vectra isn't as new as yours, but I had exactly the same problem last year. Both front springs snapped, although fortunately only about 3-4 inches from the bottom of each spring. My mechanic said that he sees quite a few cases like this, mainly caused by speed humps (although that is only supposition as there have been more since they put down quite a lot in this area). £332 sounds a bit tough - mine were £26 each and were fitted for around an extra £80, but then as I say, mine is older and a different model - didn't affect the tyre either.

 

Best of luck in getting something out of Vauxhall, and thank God as you say it didn't happen at speed.

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This is a relatively common occurrence. I have heard of approx 5 cases in the last nine months or so. Recently at auction a colleague of mine purchased a 54plate Vectra and as we were watching it drive out of the ring it actually collapsed as it went out of the doors. A nice big pop as the broken springs took out both front tyres.

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years ago you may remember all the advertising about how dangerous worn shock absorbers were, nowadays i sell probably 2-3 shocks a year -and they are usually for commercial vehicles, compared to 2-3 coil springs per week, maybe speed humps do have something to do with it.

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Hi,i have just had the wifes vectra back from the garage and he has had to replace the front spring[drivers side].Milage roughly 550000.The joke is my car 2.2 vectra had the same problem only 5 or 6 months ago and had to have the same spring replaced.There is obviously a major problem with them and i would like to take the matter further.

Cheers Barry.

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  • 1 year later...

Returned from a week away overseas on Friday.

Got into my 2004 Vectra elite 1.9 cdti (34000 miles on the clock) early Saturday morning. Went to drive away and found that the offside spring had broken leading immediately to a ripped tyre.

Been in touch with Vauxhall customer services today who advise that they have not had reports of this before. (whos telling porkies then?)

I will raise as a formal customer complaint and intend to pursue this potentially lethal defect through the courts if need be. I intend having a full analysis performed on the spring material to determine whether it's a material, heat treatment or design issue.

I'll keep you all posted.

p. s. Anybody Know if Vauxhall are quality accredited to ISO 9000 or similar?

The guy I spoke to didn't have a clue. Bit of a worry really!

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Hi,i have just had the wifes vectra back from the garage and he has had to replace the front spring[drivers side].Milage roughly 550000.The joke is my car 2.2 vectra had the same problem only 5 or 6 months ago and had to have the same spring replaced.There is obviously a major problem with them and i would like to take the matter further.

Cheers Barry.

 

I don't think you have much to complain about with over half a million miles on the clock. :-)

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  • 1 month later...

I bought my 1.8 Vectra Estate new in June 2005. It has now done 39,000 miles, all completed by myself except for the times it has been serviced by a main dealer. It has not been kerbed or driven fast over speed humps or potholes and never been heavily loaded. In January this year when turning out of my level drive I heard a loud twang from the front nearside. Later I found that the spring had broken near one end. (It is 12.5 mm thick.)

In 45 years of driving I have never heard of this happening. I have kept the two parts of the spring.

A letter to Vauxhall brought the reply, 'as it is outside the 3 year guarantee it cannot be a manufacturing fault'. Presumably they mean that if it had happened eight months earlier, it would have been a manufacturing fault! (What sort of fault would it be otherwise, a design fault?)

I am now in suspense as to when the front offside spring will fail, as Vauxhall obviously think that it will, because, to them it is not unusual and almost to be expected. Perhaps then it will break in the centre of the coil and puncture the tyre as well! Potentially a very dangerous fault and one that has put me off completely from buying another Vauxhall.

I bought this car new so that I would know its history, have it serviced and maintained properly and avoid a major failure. Avoid these cars.

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  • 1 month later...

I am, as I write this, awaiting the arrival of the AA to recover my '06 plate Vectra Estate 3.0 V6 Diesel to my local dealer, as the spring has snapped, near the base, on the front nearside. My car has covered 15,800 miles & the failure occured at a very low speed. I have owned the car from very nearly new (2,000 miles / 6 months old) & it has never been driven hard. Methinks there may be a major safety issue here!

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  • 6 months later...

i to have just got my disabeld partners 2004 vectra back from its mot

it failed due to front nearside coil spring fractured / offside front coil spring

fractured

we have low milage with this car has only done 33681 miles this year we have just done under 5000 miles do garages buy microscopes from tool shops?????

vauxhall need to sort this out last year car was recalled for hand brake????

and we are thinking about buying the new 2010 vauxhall antara ??????

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This is a difficult one to answer. It would seem that there might be a problem given the above posts but you need to remember that statistically it's possible that the springs are fitted to UK are the same fitted to the rest of the world market. So it could be that out of 1 million springs of the same type fitted they are allowing 2000 failures before saying there is a problem which they need to act upon. This equates to 99.8% pass rate, it actually might be 99.98, ie, 200 failures of an indivudual spring. I can't remember exactly. Now most items are rated to 150,000 miles in all conditions but all conditions is an open ended statement as no manufacturer can truly replicate this but the testing is very severe.

 

What I would suggest is that the posters gather the information and work out the probability that there is a problem and with this hard evidence then approach vauxhall asking for a solution. Generally, most manufacturers will say out of warranty but if you go armed with hard evidence they will/should take note. The problem with Vauxhall at the moment is that they don't know who they actually are, whether or not they they have a future etc etc. However, they still have a problem with current customers.

 

One thing not generally known to consumers is that the parts supplied to an OEM by a tier 1 supplier are usually warranted by the supplier on a mileage basis, not necessarily time, but certainly 6 years old and have to have been maintained correctly, not necessarily with a dealer.

 

Pick the bones out of this one but you could have a fight.

 

Don't expect a full refund but for a start all claims must be done at a dealer. Secondly, they will base any refund on the percentage used based on a 100K miles. This actually should be at least 150K miles. Thirdly, if out of warranty, any goodwill contribution will be based on parts only, not the labour content as this varies and will change according to the area you live in. Parts price is constant, labour is not.

 

It would be highly unlikely also that they would pay for consequential damage in terms of tyres.

 

Just something to go on for the time being.

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1. Every poster report this spring problem to watchdog.

2.Check to find out %age of petrol to diesel cars this affects---Mondeo diesels famous for this (1990's)but few petrol ones. Even more strange is the same engine fitted to the Escort hardly ever broke a front spring.

3. Why does the hydraulic inserts not prevent the tyre from touching the body--this is bloody dangerous---maybe better to report to Ministry of Transport as well--how did Vauxhall get type approval for this suspension???

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Petrol and diesel front springs will be different due to difference in weights on the front end.

Dampers will not prevent body from collapsing on to wheel as damper travel is less than potential spring travel. It's the spring that controls the ride height, ie distance from centre of wheel to arch.

The risk analysis done during the pre production FMEA might have a low score in that during a failure it is contained within an envelope and the chances of such a collapse are minute.

Type approval is a general thing that means it meets certain standards. It could be that the testing done passes these requirements but does not mean to say they might get a batch of bad uns from the supplier.

 

To get the statistics on this is not going to be easy to confirm a problem however, I think the Vectra is marketed in the states under a different name and I seem to remember there is a web site there that publishes this sort of info.

 

I'll have a dig around.

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I'm an MOT tester, and have to fail lots (and I mean LOTS) of springs due to fracture. Vauxhalls are probably the worst in this respect. I believe it to be because springs are cold formed now rather than the old fashioned way they are more brittle and this is whats causing the problems. Indeed Peugeot and Citroen had problems with front springs breaking and puncturing the tyre instead of sorting out the cause of the problem,they just fitted little guards at the bottom of the front struts to stop the spring falling down over the spring seat and causing damage.... if you have an earlier Berlingo or 306 etc,have a look and you'll see them! Some were retrofitted under warranty.... Happened to me!

 

Here is the AA sites recall

 

Recall: No. 2 of 8 Recall Ref: R/2005/095 Exact Model: Berlingo Berlingo Multispace and Picasso Description: Suspension springs may break VIN: Berlingo VF700000094000192 to VF700000094068124, Picasso VF700000036624276 to VF700000039623407, Berlingo Multispace VF700000093006682 to VF700000093100993 Build Date:

Numbers: 163400 Defect: In the exceptional event of a spring breaking there could be a risk of the spring making contact with the vehicle tyre. Action: Recall the vehicles that are likely to be affected and fit a suspension cup to each side of the front suspension. Launch Date: 13 July 2005

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  • 1 month later...

My diesel Vectra 05 Reg, 84,000 suspension spring broke on Saturday. :( I had it replaced on Monday. Wednesday night the other side went!:mad::mad:

My suggestion is that if one goes, think about getting the other one done at the same time.

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Any of us "engineers" out there noticed anything about these posts? Or come to that anyone taken on board the failure mode?

 

There's a significant clue in all the posts as to what might be going on.

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Hi folks

 

We now seem to have joined the ranks of previous posters and have what would seem failed suspension on our Vauxhall Vectra 2 ltr diesel car - awaiting garage pick up at the moment! Has anyone had any luck in the litigation route with this manufacturer concerning these springs? It is extremely worrying that these cars would have what appear to be these common faults. Has anyone had luck with Watchdog? Mickey your post from January 2008 is totally identical as that which happened to us this very morning. Car was totally fine yesterday. What were the weather conditions for you back then in Jan 2008? We have had a snow and ice here in London jan 2010, so wonder if this has anything to do with it too? Speed humps are a real pain with some boroughs having ones which to the eye do seem rather too high! All suggestions/advice gratefully received.

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My son in law's Vectra had a spring break and had to have a new tyre fitted due to the damage the spring caused. As an ex Vauxhall apprentice and a Vauxhall owner myself I was particularly interested in the cause of the problem, especially as no one else has the answer including Vauxhall.

Last night I spoke to a spring manufacturer, he was very familier with this problem and reeled off all the makes and models with the same fault. He said that they are quite happy to make a spring for a customer to his drawing but sometimes the spring fails and they say 'you made it wrong' to which he would tell them how to improve the design to prevent failure.

A compression spring should be parallel but the one Vauxhall fit has the last couple of turns reduced in diameter which causes a high stress point in the spring and causes it to break. The reduction in diameter is to do away with an extra component that mates with the spring and the suspension. So the buck stops with Adam Opel who designed it in Germany. I imgine a product recall now would probably bankrupt the place. So when buying the next car avoid the one with the reduced diameter coil springs.

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My son in law's Vectra had a spring break and had to have a new tyre fitted due to the damage the spring caused. As an ex Vauxhall apprentice and a Vauxhall owner myself I was particularly interested in the cause of the problem, especially as no one else has the answer including Vauxhall.

Last night I spoke to a spring manufacturer, he was very familier with this problem and reeled off all the makes and models with the same fault. He said that they are quite happy to make a spring for a customer to his drawing but sometimes the spring fails and they say 'you made it wrong' to which he would tell them how to improve the design to prevent failure.

A compression spring should be parallel but the one Vauxhall fit has the last couple of turns reduced in diameter which causes a high stress point in the spring and causes it to break. The reduction in diameter is to do away with an extra component that mates with the spring and the suspension. So the buck stops with Adam Opel who designed it in Germany. I imgine a product recall now would probably bankrupt the place. So when buying the next car avoid the one with the reduced diameter coil springs.

Good and interesting post. However not exactly correct. It's true that best practise dictates they should be parallel but the designers also have to consider what is known as packaging.The way around this is to reduce diameter but at the same time change the material properties. This is the easiest way around the problem. However, by doing this it builds in problems such as work hardening and makes it more prone to failure in temperatures at the ends of the parts designed limits. During validation of the said part they will do these tests but whilst close is not always a good reflection of what actually happens in the real world.

 

My theory is that extreme cold affects the issue most posters are talking about but was I do find a bit disconcerting is that when a spring fails in this mode it has the ability to touch the tyre. This indicates a failure in the DFMEA. Effectively if a spring fails such as described, then the failure needs to be contained within the envelope it operates in and not outside such that it can cause another one.

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  • 2 weeks later...
Hi, I own a 54 reg. Vauxhall Vectra 1.9 CDTi Elite . I have owned the vehicle since it was 6 months old with no probs. My vehicle has covered just 26000 miles from new and has been serviced properly, only used as family car.

On 6th January 2007 I got into the vehicle which was parked on my driveway. I was with my wife and young family aged 6 and 3. As I started to move off, I heard a crunching noise. I immediately stopped and examined the vehicle. I noticed the suspension on both sides had collapsed. The nearside front wheel was now resting on the wheel arch and the offside tyre was flat.

 

I live 200 yards from an independent garage and therefore asked for them to recover the vehicle and diagnose the problem. Both front springs had collapsed, the offside also puncturing through the tyre. They recovered the vehicle. This & the repair was £332. I've kept the failed springs.

I am concerned had this happened on a usual family motorway run, the results could have been catastrophic.

I have asked Vauxhall HQ for some money towards the repair and to highlight the probelem.

I am informed by the garage that such a double spring failure is unknown normally, particularly bearing in mind the age and mileage.

I wondered if anyone else had experienced similar issues with a vectra, or likewise any info. about similar experiences with other manufactureres. It has certainly knocked my confidence in the car.

 

My husband has just had his Vauxhall Vectra repaired for a front broken spring. Green Flag collected it from the house and took it to the dealership. After he explained that the spring just snapped as he was reversing off drive they said they would liase with Vauxhall. It is a 56 Reg Vectra Elite. Vauxhall said to change both front springs although only 1 was broken and didn't charge us anything. I take that as admiting liability.

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