Most cars nowadays employ a unibody design. This means that the car body and frame are one thing. However, for models that from 1996 or older and almost all truck models you can find a different design. There you will see that the frame and the body are two separate things. In these model the frame holds the engine and suspennsion. The frame is connected to the body and provides it with support by utilizing rubber bushings.
You can find anywhere from 6-12 bushings thorughout the car. These body mount bushings provide the car with a cushion to absorb the rigors of driving and engine vibrations. While they do have an insane lifetime they are still susceptible to damage. They do wear out with time. When it starts to wear out the car tarts to lose its allignment. Because of this the hood, trunk and other parts might become difficult to open or might even get stuck.
Another thing you might notice is the fact that your car is dipping low on one side, this comes with body mount bushings being worn out. When that moment comes the only thing to do is to get a new body mount bushing kit. Then replace the old one with the new one.
Determining Body Mount Bushing Damage
There are several different ways damaged body mount bushings can cause damage to your car. Not all are noticeable. Some are hidden and some you can see if you know where to look. Knowing about these symptoms will help you replace the entire body mount bushing kit with a new one.
So what are the symptoms? Well, let’s start with the noticeable ones. When your body mount bushings wear out your car can get misaligned. At that time you will see that you are having problems with opening the door. If you have to slam the door to latch or pull on it to open then there is a chance there is body mount bushing damage.
Another problem that happens are fender and door gaps. When the bushings are damaged the body sags. This causes the body parts to move and be misaligned. So what happens is that you start to see that there is a big gap on the top fender where as the bottom one is extremely close to the door. You should be weary about the fender getting in touch with the door. This causes serious damage to the body and becomes a costly repair.
The hard to spot symptoms are worse to be honest. When your body mount bushing fails it can cause the window seals to be opened. This lets in moisture and can cause a leak even. So what happens over time is that the incomming moisture and water starts to cause rust. The rust may start from the window frame. But this is not limited to the window at all. Your floow and internal structure of the cowl is at risk too.
Even in the back of the car it can cause trunk, rear deck, and quarter panel damage. So make sure you do a regular body check and keep an eye on symptoms of body mount bushing failure in your car.