Talking Range Rovers with Bernie Pawlik, owner and master mechanic at Pawlik Automotive in Vancouver, BC. Pawlik Automotive are 15 time winners of best auto repair shop in Vancouver as voted by their customers!
Friday’s featured post is a rear sway bar replacement on a 2011 Range Rover Sport, brought to us by a client from Vancouver.
Many items found on Range Rovers are far from simple, and the rear sway bar is no exception. The Range Rover’s sway bars are part of the vehicle’s stability control system and incorporate a hydraulic unit capable of isolating both sides of the bar.
Our featured vehicle came to us with the dash warning light on for a stability control malfunction. Diagnosis found the fluid level low in the underhood reservoir and we traced the cause to a leak in the rear sway bar hydraulic unit. This is a non-repairable part and must be replaced as a complete unit. As you might guess, it is pricey. Though the labour is not outrageous the part is buried deep under the rear of the vehicle above the differential and requires the body to be lifted from the frame to remove and reinstall the unit.
Sway bars are found on most cars and light trucks: their primary purpose is to reduce body roll while cornering and making high speed maneuvers. System components include a metal bar attached to the vehicle frame and extending to each control arm or strut by an end link. Bars connect both sides of each axle together. While this generally works just fine this is a mechanical component that functions the same under all conditions. Sometimes it is advantageous to change the tension of the sway bar, even disconnecting the two sides of the car completely. This is what the Range Rover’s system does.
When you buy a Range Rover among the many amazing features that you receive is a very advanced suspension system. The vehicle features air suspension which allows the driver to adjust the vehicle’s height. Terrain control is another huge feature. As the driver you can adjust a knob located on the center console for different road and climate conditions: steep hills, snow & sand, rocks or just normal pavement. This system incorporates a number of components and controls the transfer case and differentials; it controls suspension height and response, and it also controls the sway bars. It can even decouple them to allow individual, extra travel in the suspension system: very useful for extreme off road use.
While 99% of Range Rovers in the Vancouver area never go off road they are one of the most capable vehicles to do so. It’s hard to blame someone for staying on the paved highway: for over $100,000 and with beautiful paint and nice low profile tires and wheels it would be a shame to scratch up such a nice SUV.
For more about Range Rovers click here https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Range_Rover
For more about hydraulic sway bar system click here https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anti-roll_bar