Things you will need:
- Socket set
- Spring Compressors
- Big heavy hammer
- Rattle gun
- Some way to lift the front of the car up
- Random items you could find handy.
Lets get right into it:
1) Put the front of the car in the air (safely) ... this has been repeated many times but
DO NOT WORK ON A CAR ONLY SUPPORTED BY JACKS
2) Take off the front wheels
3) Remove the brake calipers (there are two bolts on the inward side of the brake claipers to remove) and support them (hang them up with zip ties or something) so that you don't damage your brake lines
4) Have a good look under your car and find fascinating things that you never knew were there. This is a good time to spot oil leaks to worry about in the future.
5) Remove the tie rod end from the thing that it's connected to (not pictured). There will be a castle nut with a pin through it. After this nut is removed, bash the side of where the tie rod end is sitting, and it will pop out.
6) Remove the sway bar link pin from the strut - 14mm nut and use a spanner on the groove on the pin to stop it from turning.
7) Remove the ball joint from the strut. This could be a bit of a bitch depending on how firmly it's been sitting there. The trick is to undo the nut, then once again bash the side of where the ball joint sits really hard with a big hammer. If this fails, hit harder, or find abigger hammer.
8) Now, unless i've forgotten something, you should be able to remove the sway bar link pin from the strut, and the only thing holding the strut in the car shold be the three bolts up in the engine bay
9) Undo the 3 bolts and hold that strut, they're pretty heavy when you're doing it by yourself. Remove it from the car
10) Have a beer.
11) Get out your spring compressors and get them around as much of the spring as you can... then tighten away on both of them until you can feel that the spring is jiggling around inside the strut and there is no load on it.
12) Rattle gun off the bolt at the top of the strut - i'm sure there are other ways around this, but this is nice and easy and works good!
13) Remove the bearing blate and spring retainer plate thing and now you can remove the spring.
14) Remove the rubber dust boot (it just slides off) gently so that you don't damage it.
15) You can now get to the nut that holds in the shock absorber, and undo it. (if you have a big enough spanner).
16) Once this nut is off you can take out the old shock absorber.
17) Have another beer.
Installation is pretty much reverse of removal - just make sure the springs are lining up right and that kind of stuff.
Make sure you torque up all bolts that should be torqued and locktite all bolts that should be locktited
Enjoy the procedure it's really not that hard!
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9 July 2010
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