Our review today seeks to put Sensen struts to the test so as to gauge how well they live up to the perks that they promise.
This Sensen Strut review will first focus on explaining what the different features mean for your comfort (here is how to find the best struts). Plus what they imply to your vehicle’s stability, control, and handling.
We will discuss all the features, weigh the pros and cons, and then briefly cover any alternatives available for those who don’t think Sensen Struts are for them. We’ll also cover reviews of others who have had a chance to use Sensen struts, and finish off with our verdict.
Let’s start by taking a look at the features;
Sensen Struts – Features
Sensen is among the companies that have made a name for themselves in the strut manufacturing niche. Their strut are targeted to a vast market of consumers and covers virtually all vehicle brands and models. Their choice of design, affordable options, premium materials and specific design application has endeared them to many. The key features of their designs include:
All-Weather Shock Oil
The role of oil in a strut is threefold. One, lubricate against friction, two minimize wear and tear, and three absorb some of the impact as well. But then oil is thicker in low temperatures, reducing its viscosity and efficiency, in high temperatures or after a few laps, it heats up and increases its viscosity again reducing efficiency.
A balance has to be struck therefore to make the oil not be too thin or too thick. Otherwise, such an oil oscillating between thick and thin,would provide inconsistent shock absorption as you fly through uneven terrains.
And that is why Sensen struts use an all-weather shock oil. One that just like water, will remain consistent through a wide range of temperatures, but unlike water, will lubricate for efficient movement, protects against wear and tear, and also absorb much more impact than other inconsistent oils.
SAE- Grade 8 Mounting Hardware
The mounting hardware is the link between the strut and the vehicle. It is the first point of contact between the vehicle chassis and strut mount or hardware. As such this part should have excellent impact cushioning capabilities, as well as be sturdy to withstand the impact.
That is why Sensen struts use Grade 8 SAE which is the second best steel available in the market today. This makes the hardware used strong and durable to be able to withstand the jumps, bumps and shakes.
OE Grade Steel Coil Springs
To be able to sufficiently absorb the impact of bumps, keep those nasty pothole jerks at bay, Sensen Struts use specially designed steel coil springs.
These special OE grade steel coil springs are easy to mount, have superb endurance life, extensive elastic limits and high strength. This makes them able to gracefully absorb the body impacts and dissipate it with little to no discomfort to the vehicle user.
Heavy Gauge Spring Seat
The main role of the spring seat is to maintain and support appropriate spring support through all driving conditions. The springs ought to be mechanically resistant so as to withstand distortions, wear, abrasion and impact under diverse weather as well as when hit by debris.
To afford you this and more, Sensen Struts use heavy gauge spring seats that can withstand rust and corrosion. They can also resist distortion from varying temperatures, destructive gases and aggressive liquids. The end result is a seat that can support the spring loading of your vehicle for over 5,000 miles of aggressive use on uneven terrains.
Additionally, the spring seat, minimizes spring to spring contact that might accelerate abrasion, rust and corrosion. Plus, ensure that no unwanted spring displacement occurs, which may otherwise interfere with vehicle balancing and control.
Double-Lip Premium oil seal
Spanning on the entire surface of the heavy gauge tube wall, is a double-lip premium oil seal.
The lid serves to protect against entry of debris that will contaminate the all-weather oil. If this were to happen, depending on the size of the debris, would exert some abrasive frictional force against the pistons, resulting in reduced impact absorption capabilities.
To ensure uniformity in both covering and wear, the alternating ridges and grooves of the lip are made of equal thickness and are spaced at uniform pitches. This makes the double lip oil seal have uniform thickness that will not wear out irregularly.
Premium Grade Strut Mounts, Bearings, and Proprietary Rubber materials
The proprietary rubber materials absorb and dampen the force of impact when the piston rods are forced into the tube walls.
This rubber cushions the vehicle occupants from that uncomfortable hard bump between the strut mounts and the vehicle chassis. In the absence of this proprietary rubber, the wheel sounds would be transmitted to the vehicle chassis and to the passengers.
Within the strut top casing are bearings. These bearings squeak each and every time the steering is turned in cornering or changing direction. The bearings have a ball in between them that allow the upper part of the steering wheel to easily turn.
Dust Boot and Jounce Bumper
To the anterior side of the steel coil springs is a dust boot and jounce bumper. The jounce bumper is made from select thermoplastic materials that have a higher elastic recovery, low stiffness variation and superb fatigue and durability.
This makes it possible for the jounce bumper to protect against full coil spring compression, allow them to regain their elasticity sooner as well as absorb impact, and deaden noise, harshness and vibrations.
The accompanying dust boot is able to minimize dust, and other fine materials that may have some abrasive and aggressive characteristic from reaching the steel coil springs. Through this, both the jounce bumper and dust boot ensure lasting protection, durability and strength.
Heavy Gauge Tube wall Thickness
To ensure that the strut body maintains its vertical posture, for unhindered up and down thrust by pistons during compression, the tube should be able to withstand warping, cracks and twisting.
To best achieve this, Sensen Strut designed the hollow tube with heavy gauge metallic parts, making them sturdy, and durable. Other than maintaining the strut’s structural integrity, the thickness has a role in withstanding rapid wear. Plus, rapidly absorbing and dissipating the heat generated as result of friction.
Professional Powder – Coat Paint Finish
In the presence of weather elements such as moisture and air, rusting of the steel parts of the struts is inevitable. With rust comes reduced efficiency, wear, tear and ultimate breakdown of the vehicle.
This is why Sensen Strut comes coated with a professional powder coat paint finish. One that is thermally resistant and as such won’t melt under extreme temperatures, nor pull apart under low temperatures. This ensures that steel parts are properly protected against rust making them last as long as their strut lifespan.
Fully Chromed Piston Rod
Unlike some scrupulous manufacturers that skimp quality for low range materials, Sensen Struts assemble the best of all materials they use.
To ensure that the piston rod is sturdy enough and can rapidly be thrust up and down through the tube, it uses a chromed piston rod that is aesthetically hardened to withstand the force of thrust when absorbing impact.
PTFE Coated, Sintered Iron Piston
PTFE coatings are known to have low friction coefficient (requires minimal force to slide), superior chemical resistance and excellent abrasion resistance.
To ensure that the iron piston, other than its inert strength, is hardened, Sensen coats the pistons with PTFE to ensure that the piston smoothly glides through the tubes. Gets minimal abrasion due to friction. Is sturdy enough to withstand the constant pounding against the all-weather oil. Plus, it is able to withstand weathering by the oil chemicals.
Additionally, being non-reactive, the coating prevents the various elements from reacting with each other.
Premium Quality, Seamless Twin Tube Design
To ensure that the constant shocks, impacts and bumps are seamlessly absorbed for that smooth, and comfortable ride, all parts, especially the tube wall must maintain their structural integrity.
To eliminate the game of chances, Sensen uses a double vertical tube design that is seamlessly merged affording double the strength of conventional struts.
To further enhance this stability, and minimize chances of collapsing, the design uses premium top of the range materials that are sturdy, hardy and have excellent durability.
Modern, Progressive Disc Valve Technology
Some conventional valves inconsistently close and open with changes in weather, terrain and use. To overcome this, Sensen Struts use an improved modern progressive disc valve disc technology. One that is thermally stable and has low transition temperatures such that it will work predictably and consistently as it is designed to.
Main Features of Sensen Struts
- SAE- Grade 8 Mounting Hardware
- OE Grade Steel Coil Springs
- All Weather Shock Oil
- Heavy Gauge Spring Seat
- Double-Lip Premium oil seal
- Proprietary Rubber materials
- Premium Grade Strut Mounts and Bearings
- Dust Boot and Jounce Bumper –for durability, strength and lasting protection
- Heavy Gauge Tube wall Thickness
- Fully Chromed Piston Rod
- PTFE Coated, Sintered Iron Piston
- Premium Quality, Seamless Twin Tube Design
- Modern, Progressive Disc Valve Technology
- Solid steel eye- ring.
Pros and Cons of Sensen Struts
- Has a direct fit and form that restores your vehicle to factory height.
- Has a limited lifetime warranty.
- Materials used match OE.
- They are ISO9001:2000 certified
- Are affordable.
- Not as durable as competitors.
- Not easy to install.
A majority of those who have bought them were quite impressed with how easy it is to install them, plus the purchase price which they note is quite affordable.
Those who feel short changed and cheated by the Sensen struts note that the struts have a short lifespan of about 5000 miles. More others complain of receiving half the components promised. Notably absent are bolts and nuts which are conspicuously absent across most models. Some other users note the lack of firmness when using the struts.
Alternatives to Sensen Strut
With over three hundred Oredy strut models in the market, targeting owners of Fords (skip to the best shocks for Ford), Nissan and Honda among other vehicles in operation, Oredy must be doing something right. The diversity of their models makes it almost impossible not to get an Oredy strut that will be compatible with your unique vehicle brand and model.
To boost the confidence of their consumers in the quality of products they produce, Oredy Struts come with an 18-month warranty, backed by a local US-friendly after-sale service team, that is ever ready to conclusively handle any complaints.
To make their struts user-friendly, the Oredy struts come as complete loaded assemblies that are safe and easy to install. For durability and prevention against collapse, their designs feature a hollow bumper that will come in handy when the vehicle bottoms out.
And just like the Sensen Strut, Oredy struts come as dustproof courtesy of a strut dust boot to protect the strut rod and seal against dust and debris. The selling point for Oredy struts includes their durability, premium materials used as well as compatibility with a wide range of vehicles (Check out the pros of Oredy Struts).
On the flipside, they are slightly costly, perform poorly on uneven terrains and require considerable expertise to install (check out cons of Oredy struts here). You can check out our detailed Oredy Strut review here or proceed to buy them here.
Unity struts, unlike its competitors, come at a slightly higher price. For this slight price increment, you get a clone of the original equipment pre-assembled strut. The equipment is designed with precision to ensure a hassle-free direct fit so as to restore the factory height.
For any of the many models Unity struts produce, they offer a one-year limited warranty. For durability, their special steel springs have a surface coat that bolsters their strength so as to make them last. The coat on the competitive springs further makes them corrosion resistant and able to withstand extreme temperatures, which is a characteristic of friction-prone surfaces.
For a more comfortable ride experience, the vibrations from the vehicle chassis are rapidly attenuated (weakened) making rides comfy and enjoyable. Plus, all the strut components can be purchased as a one-off buy, saving on time and money.
Last on our Sensen Strut alternative list is Monroe Strut (see how Monroe compares to Gabriel). A manufacturer of OE-like equipment that restores the vehicle to its original ride height seamlessly fits into the vehicle and leaves it performing as one with OE product.
Their wide array of vehicle-specific designs ( read our Monroe vs Kyb review) makes it possible to get a unique design best suited to each vehicle’s profile, need, and performance. The equipment comes pre-assembled to minimize incompatibility, save on time, money as well ease installation.
For durability, it features a superior tube and weld design that will guarantee prolonged structural integrity and durability (Skip to our detailed Monroe Strut review). Here is where we bought our Monroe strut.
Frequently Asked Questions
Answer: Sensen struts are good enough for the quality they retail at. But being good does not qualify them to be among the best in the strut market.
Answer: The parent company producing Sensen struts is based in Zhejiang, China. However, they recently opened a branch in North America in Tabor City, N.C. The branch will be producing shocks and struts that will target consumers within the larger North America.
Answer: Sensen is a reputable company that has been producing struts and shocks for years now. They produce affordable struts and shocks that are ready to install and are similar to OE. But, just like every story with two sides, Sensen has had its fair share of trolling and complaints from users.
Final Verdict: Are Sensen Struts good?
One part of the suspension system that is often overlooked is the strut. Whereas it may seem insignificant when compared to the shock absorber, it may actually be more valuable than the shock absorbers. This however will be an article for another day. To Sensen Struts.
Struts play a crucial role in maintaining vehicle stability, ease control and minimize swaying when you hit a bump or pothole. A good strut should therefore work to ensure all these functions are perfectly met. For Sensen, it does put up a spirited fight to ensure a comfortable ride that is not bumpy, shaky nor jumpy.
Nonetheless, it has its fair share of shortcomings that include recurrent packaging and labeling of struts as complete pre-assembled, yet they lack some components. They also have a short lifespan as well as give an average performance.
That said, considering the retail price, they do offer some decent service plus they throw in a limited warranty. So if you are on a limited budget, or you need a strut for even terrains with little to no heavy load-hauling, Sensen Struts are a perfect fit.