We regularly get asked questions regarding the fitment, adjustment, differences and testing of Koni dampers, he we have answered the most popular question we get asked.
If you do need any further assistance press feel free to contact us directly using the link at the top of the page.
We have a network of UK dealers and stockists which you can find here on our where to buy page HERE:
You will need to know what series of damper you have. This will be stamped on the body of the damper and are the first 2 or 4 digits i.e 26, 80 or 8741 etc.
26 & 30 Series - Gas Mono Tube Dampers
1) Remove the dust cover if fitted and expose the adjusting button.
2) Hold the damper body by hand where the piston rod emerges from the cylinder. Push the button carefully, by hand, and hold it in that position. (Do not use any device, other than by hand to depress button.
3) The adjusting device has been provided with a number of clearly distinguishable stops (clicks), each of which marks an adjustment position (zero +2 clicks = 3 positions, 3 clicks = 4 positions).
4) The damper may have already been adjusted earlier. Therefore, check whether the damper is in the adjustment position by turning the piston rod to the left (counterclockwise) with the other hand until the zero-stop is felt - DO NOT USE FORCE!
5) To increase rebound, turn the piston rod one or more clicks to the right (clockwise), and release the adjusting button.
6) Be sure the adjusting button fully springs back into position. As long as the button is depressed, do not turn the piston rod further; otherwise correct adjustment will be disturbed. As soon as the button has made its complete return, the piston rod may be turned freely. The damper can now be refitted.
A short adjustment video for 26 & 30 series dampers can be found HERE
80, 82, 86, 87, 88, 90, 8040, 8240 Series - Twin Tube compress to adjust dampers.
1) Remove the damper from the vehicle and hold it vertically with the lower eye or pin attached in a vise. Use clamp plates to prevent damage.
2) Fully collapse the damper, at the same time turning the dust cap or piston rod slowly to the left (counterclockwise), until it is felt that the cams of the adjustment nut engage in the recesses of the foot valve assembly.
3) Some dampers include a bump rubber concealed under the dust cover and it must be removed prior to adjusting.
4) The damper may have already been adjusted. Therefore check whether the damper is in the adjustment position or not by keeping it collapsed and gently turning it further to the left counting at the same time the half turns until a stop is felt. Stop turning then and do not use force.
5) Keeping the damper collapsed, make 1 half turn (180 degrees) to the right (clockwise). In case of prior adjustment add the number of half the turns previously found. The total range is 4 to 5 half turns.
6) Pull the damper out vertically without turning for at least 1 cm to disengage the adjusting mechanism. The dust cap or piston rod may now be turned freely.
Click HERE to see a short video on the twin tube adjustment procedure.
8010, 8041, 8210, 8241, 8610, 8641, 8710, 8741 Series Externally Adjustable:
These dampers are the simplest in the range to adjust, literally at the turn of a knob. Place the supplied adjuster know on the top of the damper and turn anti-clockwise to increase rebound force and clockwise the reduce rebound force. they can be adjusted in a matter of seconds, from a comfortable "touring" setting to a more firmer setting for a sporty drive. There is usually 4-5 half turns of movement.
A short video can be found HERE
Koni has designed an ingenious method of installing inserts into sealed housings thus allowing the use of performance dampers when they were previously unavailable.
It has become common practice for auto manufacturers all over the world to save money by using factory sealed strut housings rather than the traditional threaded closed housings when they build new cars. Whenever possible, Koni will make a complete strut housing damper but sometimes the necessary spring platforms and mounting brackets are unavailable or financially unfeasible. By designing the Koni Cut-A-Strut insert system, many vehicles with factory sealed struts now have performance damper options.
The installation requires only basic tools which most individuals already own. These tools include a cutting device such as a hacksaw, grinder or pipe cutter to open the strut housing as well as an electric drill. Generally, it takes an average of 15-20 minutes additional labour per corner over a traditional strut insert installation. A short video showing the fitment procedure can be found HERE
Although this is a fairly straightforward job for most qualified mechanics, we would suggest taking the car to a garage or workshop if you are unsure. Koni has been using this method very successfully for many years on numerous applications from Porsche to Ford, Honda to Hyundai.
Always get in touch with original supplying Koni dealer (with a copy of the purchase and details of the fault) or, when point of purchase is no longer existent, the authorized Koni importer for your country.
Suspect dampers will always need to be returned for investigation before any free of charge replacements are sent.
The KONI warranty is to the original purchaser against defects in materials or workmanship for a period of two years prom the date of purchase. The warranty does not cover damage to the parts caused by misuse, misapplication, over adjusting, too much lowering, wrong installation, racing etc
KONI Heavy Track shock absorbers are designed to improve ride and handling characteristics for overall all-day use. Sizing of the original shocks absorbers is respected and with the high quality components KONI uses the durability is improved. KONI HT RAID is intended for heavy duty use. The additional technical features HT RAIDs have make sure the shocks will last through very demanding safari’s, bush trips, pole expeditions, and so on. Capable of use in combination with heavy duty springs, HT RAIDs are often designed to cope with raised suspension.
KONI's are designed to fit standard height cars and can work with lowered cars as long as they don't bottom out internally and become damaged. Unlike some shocks, KONI's are not position sensitive so they will work properly anywhere in their stroke range providing they are not bottoming or topping out. Different vehicle suspension designs have different stroke travels but a good rule of thumb is that most vehicles can be lowered acceptably about 30-35 mm, beyond that the possibility of bottoming increases rapidly although some longer stroke cars can go lower. Most vehicles are equipped with bump stops to keep the shocks and springs from bottoming out. When lowering a vehicle be sure to reuse your bump stops as they are cheap insurance to avoid bottoming damage. Remember also that severely lowered vehicles typically also have a negative effect on suspension geometry, ride quality and handling, and tyre and suspension part wear.
There is no single best adjustment setting for your KONI's because every driver has different preferences for comfort, performance, performance modifications and roads to drive on. For most vehicles, we suggest that new KONI's be installed in the full soft position. (the standard setting right out of the box) to take advantage of the balance of ride comfort and handling designed by the KONI ride development engineers. If the car has performance upgrades (springs, wheel/tire packages, etc.) or the driver wants the car a bit more aggressive, most people find the optimum setting in the 1/2 to one full turn from the full soft range. Over the extended life of the damper or if the driver wants a specific firm handling characteristic, the dampers can be adjusted up higher. Very rarely will KONI ever need to be adjusted to the full firm setting.
This is a difficult question to answer because every KONI application is developed for that specific vehicle to get the best handling characteristics. In general, most factory shocks are under damped for optimized handling so KONI engineers select firmer valvings. Unfortunately factory shocks are generally chosen for financial reasons rather than performance so lower technology, cheaper shocks are standard. In some instances, a factory shock may have good characteristics in some parts of the working range but need some help in other parts and there are even a few instances where the KONI engineers found better handling by softening the factory units.
Koni Traditional yellow sport shocks are (in most cases) adjustable for rebound damping force, some need to be removed to adjust, some are top adjustable and can be adjusted whilst fitted. Our orange STR.T dampers are fixed rate, non adjustable dampers.
There are 3 Koni service centres in the UK, all able to service, repair or re-build Koni road or race dampers, you can find there details here http://www.koniuk.co.uk/about/service-repair
The real answer is no a human being can't move the shock fast enough to even begin to flow oil through the piston valving.
What you feel by hand when you make adjustments is the bleed changes (oil bypassing the piston valving) and some amount of seal and guide friction/stiction that can be accentuated by the fact that the shocks are brand new and the parts have not worked together much yet.
If these also have low pressure gas a side effect (not a function) is that the shocks may self-extend on their own but that force is very, very small and the bleed portion of the adjustment and any light amount of friction can alter the extension rate.
Just in the same way that you would never run an engine on a dyno and measure your horsepower and torque at engine idle speeds (below the design rpm range of the camshaft), trying to quantify a shock by hand is operating it far below the piston speeds where oil is actually flowing through the piston valving.
Every single KONI shock absorber is dyno tested at the factory prior to advancing to the paint line. If someone receives a KONI shock with paint on it, this is proof that it passed the dyno test when it was built.
Regardless of what the shock might feel like when moving them by hand or by watching the self-extension rate from the internal gas pressure, this is not real data that has any indication of actual function on the shock in operation on the car. Only a shock dyno that can move the shock fast enough to make it operate car-like at piston speeds will flow oil through the actual piston valving and quantify the real damping forces generated.
We often joke that after trying to measure a shock's performance by moving it by hand, one should take their tongue and lick the shock body to see what it tastes like. Ridiculous as that sounds, it is probably about as good a testing method as moving a shock by human hand. We are going to feel different things like friction, gas pressure, bleed, etc. but we won't feel the actual valving force itself.