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Immature Tough Guy
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Tools needed:

-> Pump jack and jack stands
-> Sockets 12mm and 17mm for front, 14mm and 17mm for rear
-> 30" breaker bar
-> Torque wrench
-> Spring compressors


Directions for front:

1. Jack car up one corner at a time.

2. Before trying to take the strut assembly off the car, try and loose the top center piston bolt, which is nestled in the center hole of the strut tower brace. Use a 17mm socket and your breaker bar to try and loosen it. If the piston spins as you're trying to loosen, we'll have to worry about that later then.

3. Remove wheel/tire and unclip brake line and move it out of the way

4. Loosen only the top three strut tower upper mount bolts with 12mm. Be careful not to strip them, this happens A LOT.

5. With the breaker bar, loosen the bottom two strut bolts with a 17mm socket. Remove the bolt/nut and set aside. Then take all three upper mount nuts off the strut tower brace and set aside.

6. Now you can carefully take the strut out, make sure not to tear the CV BOOT. If the bottom of the strut keeps hitting it, raise the car higher and it should come out easily.

7. In your hands you will have the strut/spring assembly and it needs to be taken apart. Now here's where some get stuck, the top center upper mount bolt which screws on to the tip of the piston shaft, can be difficult to loosen. If you had the foresight to loosen them while the assembly was on the car, you're done. If not, try and use a 8mm open ended wrench for the piston tip, and a closed end 17mm for the bolt. Or air tools. Or a trip to Pep Boys. DO NOT completely remove this center bolt, only after the next step, this can cause injury (flying spring).

8. Using the spring compressors, compress the springs on opposite sides until the spring has compressed more than an inch.

9. Carefully take the assembly apart, remembering EXACTLY which pieces go in which order and which side is up and down for each piece! Clean off any debris and check the strut for oil leakage.

10. Replace the stock spring with your aftermarket, and reassembly the assembly. The spring compressors should now be used to compress the aftermarket spring so that you can put the upper mount far enough down the piston shaft to screw the top center nut back on to spec, around 65 lb/ft.

11. The upper mount and top spring perch have arrows that need to face toward the outside of the car as you put the assembly back together.

12. Replace the assembly on the car, the bottom two strut bolts need at least 90 lb/ft while the top three upper mount bolts need only 20 lb/ft or so.


Directions for rear:

1. Much easier than front. Remove wheel/tire. The rear upper mount has only two 14mm nuts that are on two bolts that stick down from the chassis. The bottom of the shock has only one 17mm bolt/nut combo. Again, be very careful not the strip the bolts.

2. Take the strut/spring assembly out and start take it apart. Using the spring compressors, compress the springs on opposite sides until the spring has compressed more than an inch.

3. The top center upper mount bolt for the rear should be easy to remove, much easier than the front.

4. Carefully take the assembly apart, remembering EXACTLY which pieces go in which order and which side is up and down for each piece! Clean off any debris and check the shock for oil leakage.

5. Replace the stock spring with your aftermarket, and reassembly the assembly. The spring compressors should now be used to compress the aftermarket spring so that you can put the upper mount far enough down the piston shaft to screw the top center nut back on to spec, around 20 lb/ft only, about 5 threads down the piston shaft. Any farther and you reduce wheel travel.

6. The upper mount needs to be angled perpendicular to the bottom of the shock to ensure correct fitment on the car. Since the upper mount allows some movement you can get it to fit easily after a couple of tries.

7. Replace the assembly on the car, the bottom strut bolt needs at least 90 lb/ft while the top top upper mount bolts need only 45 lb/ft or so.


-> MAKE SURE YOU GET A FRONT ALIGNMENT AFTERWARDS!!!
 

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Owner
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Helpful to add screenshots of the assembly and its pieces from the FSM, or grab pictures (with permission) from threads on here?
 
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