An internal combustion engine is powered by a series of small explosions. These controlled mini-explosions produce immense vibrations that can make for a very jarring driving experience if not properly dampened. That’s why cars have motor mounts: rubber, hydraulic, and polyurethane platforms that absorb the worst of the vibrations and keep them away from the frame.
Motor mounts wear out after about 5-7 years and need replacement. But come replacement time, which brand do you choose? Anchor Industries makes some of the cheapest engine mounts on the market and we will be reviewing their product today.
Are Anchor motor mounts any good?
We’ll keep this short, no. But it could easily be a yes depending on the circumstances. Anchor Industries is an aftermarket supplier of cheap motor mounts, transmission mounts, center support bearings, and suspension strut mounts. The company is based in Solon, Ohio. Its manufacturing happens in China, India, and Thailand, however.
Anchor’s mounts are cheap though. Surprisingly cheap. As cheap as 30 bucks. Some models go for $15. But it’s a case of getting what you pay for in this case. The mounts provide $30 worth of value and no more. And it isn’t even a case of outsourcing gone bad. Anchor’s mounts were just as unreliable before the company outsourced manufacturing to Asia. Complaints about their mounts on motoring forums stretch all the way back to 2008.
The build quality leaves a lot to be desired with misaligned threads that cause the engine to lean. They also don’t last very long, needing replacement after some 5,000 miles while stock motor mounts push 60,000 to 100, 000. Some stock mounts even outlive the very engines they’re meant to protect.
Anchor motor mounts do have one thing going for them, however: lifetime warranty. It’s probably what has kept the company in business since The Great Depression. A $30 motor mount can be quite tempting when the alternative will set you back $200 before you even factor in the labor costs for installation.
Anchor motor mount review: Reliability and performance
Reliability and performance for Anchor motor mounts is subpar. Most users report that the mounts start failing after around 3,000 – 5,000 miles. For the average commuter, that’s six months of driving. It’s not entirely a bad deal for $30, but is the headache of replacing your motor mounts every six months worth it? An OEM motor mount might cost you ten times as much but it’s going to last 5 to 7 years, making it a comparatively better deal.
Anchor motor mount review: People’s experiences
While Anchor Industries calls itself “the most trusted name in engine mounts,” a cursory Google search yields dozens of complaints from dissatisfied customers. The company doesn’t supply its mounts to any known vehicle manufacturers. The first result you get when you search for vehicle manufacturers that use Anchor’s mounts is “Do not use Anchor motor mounts”
All these complaints can be summarized in two words: Anchor bad. There are a few who insist the mounts are just okay and almost none who praise them outright. We sifted through countless motoring forums and parsed through threads dating as far back as 2008. Customer sentiment is overwhelmingly negative.
The mounts have a slew of build quality issues. The rubber is too thin and sometimes it isn’t even there. Parts are misaligned and don’t fit together, causing the engine to lean dangerously. Even with the mounts that appear solidly built, their reliability is suspect as they start rattling after only a couple of a thousand miles.
Anchor motor mount review: Installation
Anchor’s motor mounts are fairly uncomplicated. Given that installation costs more than the mounts themselves, doing it yourself is a tempting prospect. With the right tools, you could save yourself hundreds of dollars by personally performing the installation. You will need:
- Your repair manual
- A jack
- A block of wood
- A pry bar
- Ratchet and socket set
- Torque wrench
- Wrench set
- Wheel chocks
Safety is always the first step, so engage the parking then secure the back wheels with wheel chocks to prevent any rolling. Then:
- Raise the front of the car.
- Remove the front wheels for ease of access.
- Raise the fender lines and anything else that is in the way before raising the engine.
- Raise the engine to take its weight off the mount. Don’t place the jack directly under the oil pan, however. It will dent and tear. Use blocks of wood to evenly distribute the weight.
- Remove the old mount, put in the new one, bolt it on tightly, and put everything back in place.
A mechanic might charge anything from $200 to $500 as labor fees for the installation. A steep price to be certain but we still recommend using one if you lack the technical know-how to perform the installation yourself.
Anchor motor mount review: Price
Anchor motor mounts are exceedingly cheap. It’s their one redeeming quality. The price varies with model numbers. The cost ranges from $8 to $40 per mount.