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General Articles - Editorials

Energy Suspension Performance Polyurethane

Article written by Moab Man

Date Added: 12/30/2007

Here at MOABJEEPER Magazine we have been preparing (mostly regular maintenance items) for Easter Jeep Safari 08?.

Of course, anytime you have to repair or replace a component; huge dividends can be gained by upgrading the stock parts for a small additional cost over OEM replacements.

So when it came time to replace the numerous worn-out rubber bushings, and a failed polyurethane bushing or two; we turned to Hoyt Vandenberg, Director of Public Relations, Energy Suspension to make sure we did things right. The following is a paraphrase of our conversation:

MJ: Why should we use Energy Suspension polyurethane over OEM replacement rubber?

Hoyt: Polyurethane has a much firmer, tighter fit allowing components to work much more efficiently. For example, in a shock absorber application, before the shock can start to counteract axle movement, the ?squish? of the rubber must be overcome. A quality polyurethane bushing transfers this energy to the shock almost immediately.

The major cause of this rubber bushing ?squish? is rot. Chemicals, UV, gasoline, oil, you name it; all cause rubber to break down or rot. Polyurethane is not affected by any of these, and most people will never need to replace polyurethane bushings in the lifetime of the vehicle.

MJ: From time to time people still do have to replace polyurethane bushings. What do you see as the cause for this replacement?

Hoyt: It?s important to start with high quality polyurethane, such as Energy Suspension's specific formula of polyurethane we call HYPER-FLEX. A lot of time & work went in to developing the chemical combination, manufacturing/curing process, and the correct hardness (durometer) of our polyurethane for the various applications. Not all polyurethane is created equal though, we have seen some inferior poly products from offshore manufacturers from time to time.

MJ: Going through the wide range of Energy Suspension bushings, we had the option of ordering red or black, any difference?

Hoyt: Quality of both products is equal, but for some specific applications we do add a small amount of graphite to the black polyurethane. This adds a degree of built-in lubrication and helps bushings move in rotational applications.

MJ: What do you suggest to prevent the squeak of a polyurethane bushing?

Hoyt: Of course any installation of a polyurethane bushing should start out the right way. For initial installation we suggest using Energy Suspension Formula 5 Prelube.

MJ: Why Formula 5 Prelube? The local auto parts store suggests using white lithium grease?

Hoyt: The problem with white lithium grease is that it?s not tacky enough, and the light weight of this grease can wash right out of the application. This is why we suggest using our Teflon impregnated, silicone-based Formula 5 Prelube grease. You will notice immediately the grease is incredibly thick and tacky. It sticks to everything! This tacky quality is what makes it great installation grease. It doesn?t squeegee off during installation of the bushing and it lasts a very long time.

MJ: So we have installed the bushing using the Formula V Prelube, what do you suggest for bushing maintenance? Do we need to continue to grease the polyurethane bushings?

Hoyt: Most Polyurethane bushings do not NEED to be greased after initial installation. We do suggest periodic greasing if the bushing is used in a rotational application or in extreme conditions such as off-road use or in snow.

For continued maintenance greasing, Energy Suspension suggests Watercraft or Marine Grease as acceptable substitutes for the Forumla 5 Prelube. These water-proof greases have more tack and will not wash off like lithium grease or assembly lubes.

MJ: We understand that Energy Suspension products are made in America; is this true?

Hoyt: Energy Suspension products are from start to finish made in America. As a matter of fact, I just left the warehouse where we were just pouring some bushings.

MJ: Final question, if I can?t find the bushing I need, can you guys do anything for me?

Hoyt: If any of your readers can not find the bushing they need, they are always welcome to call our customer service line. Most likely we can help them out and provide them with the Energy Suspension part number. Once they have the part number, they can go to any Energy Suspension authorized dealer to purchase.

A few authorized Energy Suspension dealers are: Autozone, Pep Boys, Kragens, and Keystone.

Energy Suspension Customer Service: (949) 361-3935

Final Thoughts

Our experience so far with all the Energy Suspension bushings we have installed has been top notch. They truly are every bit as high quality as Hoyt touts them to be. And with the maintenance knowledge we gained from our conversation with him, we expect years of continued performance from the bushings.

Our Thank You's!

MOABJEEPER Magazine would like to thank Hoyt Vandenberg, Director of Public Relations, Energy Suspension for taking the time to educate us on polyurethane bushings.

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