Bear in mind that you will be doing a lot of pushing and pulling on old bolts while lying under the car. Therefore making sure you have plenty of support is absolutely essential. When working alone it is also a good idea to have your mobile in a pocket just in case. I know this is common sense but just in case !!
This job is surprisingly VERY messy. Keep plenty of hand-cleaner and old towels etc etc handy
Most of the bolts we are undoing here wont have been touched for many years. Therefore it is advisable to give everything a good few soakings with penetrating fluid prior to attempting to remove anything.
Similarly most of the bolts you remove will be rusty. (Certainly if you have a UK car ) I decided to replace all the nuts, bolt and washers I was removing but Mr. T did bend me over to the tune off £60 for the privilege !!!!!
Trolley Jack (Used for assembly of suspension arms. No, a scissor jack will not achieve the same thing :-))
Socket extensions. Long & Short
12mm Deep-Well Socket
17mm Deep-Well Socket
17mm Shallow-Well Socket
19mm Shallow-Well Socket
24mm Deep-Well Socket
12mm Open-ended spanner
17mm Ring Spanner
½" Open Ended Spanner OR 5mm Allen Key (This will depend on which type of drop links you have)
Large Flat-blade Screwdriver
Scotchbrite Pads Large Bench-Vice with jaw opening of at least 130mm (Approx)
2 Ramps or Breezeblocks or old road wheels (Or 2 of something, ideally about a foot tall, capable of withstanding the weight of your 2!)
Soap. Lots !!
1. Chock front wheels and jack up rear of car as far as possible and support with axle stands. Remove roadwheels.
ANTI-ROLL BAR BUSHES
2. Disconnect drop-links from ends of anti-roll bar. (This is a front pic, but the principle is the same!)(This may be un-necessary but it is preferable to have no resistance on the bar when trying to re-assemble the bushes.) And YES, I DO clean the insides of my wheels !
3. Locate the anti-roll bar brackets. There are 2. 1 each side.
4. Using a 12mm deep-well socket, loosen the nuts securing the anti-roll bar bracket to the subframe. As I am sure you will have read elsewhere, Mr T did a great job of hiding the other bracket bolts between the subframe and body.
Therefore, in order to remove them we will have to lower the subframe.
5. Looking from underneath, roughly central in the subframe you will see three bolt heads in a triangular arrangement. These are holding an engine mounting to the subframe. Loosen and withdraw all three bolts.
6. Using a long socket extension and 17mm socket, loosen the 4 bolts securing the subframe to the body.
There is one bolt in each corner. These will show a fair bit of resistance so go gently.
7. Position your trolley jack under the middle of the subframe.
Note: If you have ABS, the sensor cables will need to be removed from the subframe prior to the next step. (10mm Socket)
8. Continue to loosen the subframe bolts a few turns at a time. Once there is some slack in the bolts, lower the trolley jack slightly. Continue this process until the bolt heads securing the anti-roll bar brackets become visible. Depending on the type of exhaust you have, you may find the subframe is showing some resistance to lowering. This is due to the exhaust mount. Use a 12mm socket and extension to undo the rearmost exhaust mountings, supporting the exhaust as you go. This should now allow enough movement for you to access the bolts.
9. Using your 12mm spanner, loosen the bolts but do not remove them yet!
10. Return to the 12mm deep-well socket and fully remove the bracket retaining nuts.
11. Now it is OK to remove the bolts.
12. Remove anti-roll bar brackets and pull old bushes from anti-roll bar (Noting orientation).
13. Apply liberal amounts of supplied grease to prothane bushings and slip over bar in the same orientation as the old ones were removed.
14. Replace brackets, bolts then nuts.
15. Slowly jack up subframe tightening its bolts as you go until all is good. Torque securing bolts to specified limits.
16. Replace engine mount bolts and Torque to specified limits.
17. Re-attach Drop-Links to Anti-roll bar.
REAR CONTROL ARM & STRUT ROD BUSHES
18. Using 24mm Deep-well socket, loosen strut rod retaining nut.
19. Using 19mm Shallow-well socket, loosen control arm to body bolt. (This is the front, but rear looks the same )
. 20. Using 17mm Deep-Well socket, loosen strut rod to body bolt.
21. Using 17mm Socket and extension, loosen and remove ball joint bolts.
22. Remove control arm to body bolt.
23. Remove strut rod retaining nut, cup washer and bush.
24. Remove strut rod to body bolt and lock nut.
25. Withdraw whole assembly from vehicle.
26. Withdraw strut rod from control arm. Remove bush and cup washer.
27. Now we need to burn out the old bushes.
28. Using your propane torch, set light to the rubber bushings at both ends. Once hot enough, they should burn well on their own. Use the pipe wrench to twist off the large washer from the control arm bush.
29. Periodically, use the screwdriver to remove any burnt rubber.
30. Eventually you should be able to force out the tubular cores and push away the remaining rubber. When cooled, use the scotch pad to remove any rubber residue and to smooth any minor imperfections.
31. Prepare a bowl of hot soapy water in the area where you will be installing the new bushes!
32. Prepare bench vice, ready to press in the new bushes.
33. Apply liberal amounts of supplied grease to relevant surfaces of section of new bush.
34. Position in vice and close. This is the principle for installing all the bushes. There are various techniques you can apply here but the principle is the same. I'll let you find your own way here.
35. It's a good idea here to clean as much of the grease as possible from your hands, the vice, the arms, the missus ;-) and whatever else has gotten covered in the damn stuff.
36. Assemble the strut rod to control arm using new bushes and grease and retained cup washers. Thread on the nut as far as possible by hand.
37. Insert strut rod into its bracket. The fit will be tightish. You can use the mallet if necessary to gently tap it into approximately the correct position. Then use the screwdriver through the bolt hole to locate the bush centrally. Insert the bolt and attach nut loosely for now.
38. Offer the balljoint up to the hub and insert bolts. Be careful here to make sure the ball joint is seated correctly. You should be able to do the bolts up by hand, quite a few turns.
39. Offer the control arm up to its position. You will find there is some tension in the assembly now and it may be difficult to position correctly. This is where the trolley jack comes in again as a handy support.
40. Position the supplied large washer between the bracket and the bush at the end of the bush nearest the front of the car.
41. Use the trolley jack, mallet and screwdriver to position correctly and insert bolt.
42. Now everythings in position, tighten the balljoint bolts to the specified torque.
43. Tighten the strut rod to body bolt. You will have to use a 17mm ring spanner to hold the lock nut until tightening is done far enough to allow the lock nut to bite on the bracket. Do not torque this bolt yet.
44. Tighten the control arm to body bolt. You should be able to get this started by hand. Once tightish, stop. Do not torque yet.
45. Tighten the strut rod retaining nut enough to secure the new bushes snugly inside the control arm. Do not torque yet.
46. Now, these bolts/nuts ideally need to be torqued with the weight of the car on the wheels. This is possible but you will need to take care!!!!!!! If you ignore this, the new bushes will forever be twisted and will creak like a mother fu**er :-) Take my word for it. Past experiences of buying spray grease by the crateload have taken their toll! Its also quite embarrassing trying to drive a sports car that goes squeak every time you go over a small bump!
47. Attach roadwheels hand tight.
48. Position (Ramps, Breeze blocks, roadwheels etc etc) flat on the ground, face up, directly underneath your wheels. I think you can see now what I'm getting at
49. Remove axle stands and gently lower the rear of the car onto the makeshift supports.
50. Push car up and down a few times just to make sure the new bushes are nicely settled and the supports are solid.
51. Torque the control arm to body bolt, strut rod to body bolt and strut rod retaining nut to the specified torque.
52. Jack up, remove supports and lower to the ground.
FRONT ANTI-ROLL BAR BUSHES
53. Jack up the front of the vehicle as far as possible and support with axle stands.
54. Using the 10mm socket, remove large front undertray. (The one hiding the ant-roll bar )
55. Disconnect drop-links from ends of anti roll bar. (This may be un-necessary but it is preferable to have no resistance on the bar when trying to re-assemble the bushes.)
56. Locate the anti-roll bar brackets. There are 2. 1 each side.
57. Using a 12mm deep-well socket, loosen the nuts and bolts securing the anti-roll bar brackets to the body.
58. Remove anti-roll bar brackets and pull old bushes from anti-roll bar (Noting orientation).
59. Apply liberal amounts of supplied grease to prothane bushings and slip over bar in the same orientation as the old ones were removed.
60. Replace brackets, bolts and nuts.
61. Re-attach Drop-Links to Anti-roll bar. Do not replace undertray. Otherwise you will not be able to access the bolt heads of the front strut rods.
FRONT CONTROL ARM AND STRUT ROD BUSHES
62. Using 17mm Shallow-well socket, loosen strut rod to body bolt.
63. Using 17mm Shallow-well socket, loosen control arm to body bolt.
64. Using 17mm shallow-well socket, loosen the nuts securing the strut rod to the control arm.
65. Using the 14mm socket and extension, loosen and remove balljoint bolts.
66. Remove control arm to body bolt. There will be spring tension here so you may find it useful to position your trolley jack underneath to relieve the tension enough to remove the bolt.
67. Remove the strut rod to body bolt.
68. Withdraw whole assembly from vehicle.
69. Remove strut rod to control arm nuts and separate.
70. Now its time to burn S**t again
71. Using your propane torch, set light to the rubber bushings at both ends. Once hot enough, they should burn well on their own. Use the pipe wrench to twist off the large washer from the control arm bush.
72. Periodically, use the screwdriver to remove any burnt rubber.
73. The front strut rod bushes are particularly big ba*****s. Once hot enough you may find that a bit of gentle hammering on the central core will encourage its removal. These don't have a simple sleeve. The steel tube is bulbous in the middle, meaning it will take more effort to get it shifted.
74. Unlike the rear strut rods, you will now see that the front rods have large steel sleeves in them. These need to be removed.
75. Support the strut rod in such a way that it will withstand a good hammering:
76. Locate the square cutout in the metal sleeve, this will save you some work. The sleeve is kind of spring loaded, so we need to basically cut the metal either side of that square to release the spring. Then the sleeve will easily tap/fall out.
77. Use the lump hammer and chisel to bend the metal above the cutout inwards.
78. Once bent in, chisel through this piece of metal so it splits.
79. Repeat 77 for the metal opposite.
80. The sleeve should now be unsprung and will easily tap/fall out.
81. Grease and install the new bushes as before.
82. Assemble the strut rod to control arm and attach nuts just snug.
83. Offer the balljoint up to the hub and insert bolts. Be careful here to make sure the ball joint is seated correctly. You should be able to do the bolts up by hand, quite a few turns.
84. Offer the strut rod up to its position. Tap into place if necessary and centre with the screwdriver. Insert bolt and hand tighten a few turns.
85. You will need the trolley jack here to help the control arm into position.
86. Position the supplied large washer between the bracket and the control arm bush at the end of the bush nearest the front of the car.
87. Use the trolley jack, mallet and screwdriver to position correctly and insert bolt.
88. Now everything's in position, tighten the balljoint bolts to the specified torque.
89. Tighten the strut rod to body bolt. Do not torque this bolt yet.
90. Tighten the control arm to body bolt. Do not torque yet.
91. As before, these bolts/nuts ideally need to be torqued with the weight of the car on the wheels.
92. Attach roadwheels hand tight
93. Position (Ramps, Breeze blocks, roadwheels etc etc) flat on the ground, face up, directly underneath your wheels.
94. Remove axle stands and gently lower the rear of the car onto the makeshift supports.
95. Push car up and down a few times just to make sure the new bushes are nicely settled.
96. Torque the control arm to body bolt, strut rod to body bolt and strut rod to control arm nuts to the specified torque.
97. Jack up & replace front undertray.
98. Remove supports and lower to the ground.
99. After clean/tidy up comes the best bit
100. The Road Test. A little squeak or creak here or there is normal for a couple of miles while everything settles in again.
101. Go to Mr. T and get a full 4 wheel alignment check done!Adam Slee
Created : 2011-08-27 12:11:54, Last Modified : 2011-08-27 12:11:54