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Front Quick Strut Install

Discussion in 'Stock 2002 - 2005 Explorers' started by roob, October 10, 2010.

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    1. roob

      roob New Member

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      yesterday I installed two new Monroe Quick Strut on my Ex and here is the pics. I hope this helps anyone who attempts this and it was anything but "quick"
      [​IMG]

      yeah here it is

      [​IMG]

      and thats what it looks like

      [​IMG]

      heres the old one

      [​IMG]

      Remove this bottom bolt from this side, here ford did something to help me, the nut on the other side has a tab attached to it that locks it to the frame as you loosen or tighten in, thank you ford

      [​IMG]

      Remove the 3 nuts from the top

      [​IMG]

      and its out, came right out a little lean and twist like a puzzle and it slid right out

      [​IMG]

      Look Mom NO STRUT

      [​IMG]

      Insert strut like so

      [​IMG]

      Heres where the fun begins, it doesnt go in like it came out, the quick strut base is a little thicker than the factory and it doesnt clear the top. I placed another jack to raise the arm to a point that allowed the strut to clear, than shoved it back. once in place it was now longer than would line up with bottom hole. I put a spring compressor on it in place and was able to line up the bottom which needed a jack at the bottom of the strut to convince it in to place as the new rubber bushing made it difficult

      [​IMG]

      and its in.

      Roob
       
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    3. buddychan

      buddychan New Member

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      Great write-up.

      How do you like them so far? Can you tell the difference between your old ones and these? How long did it take you to install these?

      Thanks.
       
    4. fusseli

      fusseli Active Member

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      Helpfull photos and tips, searching suggested that removing the upper control arm as well as the sway bar end links was necessary. It's curious to see that maybe that's not needed. Should this be made a sticky..?

      I'm looking to do my fronts in the near future also, they are squeeky and bouncy at 135k.
       
    5. jstorm001

      jstorm001 Member

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      I have quick struts in the rear on my explorer installed two years ago there already rusted pretty bad.
       
    6. fusseli

      fusseli Active Member

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      What brand?
       
    7. FordFool2

      FordFool2 Active Member

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      Darnit! Another thread made me believe I needed to remove the stabilizer end link and separate the upper control arm. So I did. This looks too simple.

      I used Monroe. Currently special "Shocktober". Buy 3 and get 1 free (via rebate).
       
    8. fusseli

      fusseli Active Member

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      Monroe is also what I'd like to use since I already have Monroe Reflex in the rear. I'm hoping that jstorm001's rusty quick struts were some cheapies...
       
    9. waskly

      waskly Well-Known Member

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      im actually impressed you got it in and out with out disconnecting a control arm, upper or lower...
       
    10. roob

      roob New Member

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      Quick Struts

      Was a bit of a puzzle getting them in without removing upper control arm, which probably would have made it easier. They are now 2 years old and I am thinking they may already need replacing with about 40k miles on them and not real hard driving I just think that they are too soft and I could do better. I will post what I end up going with not that I have very many choices.
      Roob
       
    11. Huskerbob

      Huskerbob Active Member

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      I don't understand all the fuss about getting the front assemblies, shock and spring, out without removing the upper control arm. It's really simple.

      Jack the truck up and secure it with a jack stand/s. Take the wheel off.

      Remove the lower shock bolt. You may have to punch it out with a drift.

      Remove the 3 nuts on the upper bolts/studs through the engine compartment. Open the hood and take a peek and you'll see them.

      Give the whole assembly a good rap or 3 with a dead blow hammer and it will fall down through the lower control arm. Then wiggle it around and pull it up and out.

      Install the new one in the reverse order. Drop the assembly down through the lower control arm and then up so you can install the top 3 bolts/studs and nuts first and then the bottom bolt.

      You may need to use a small floor jack to get the bottom up and lined up with the hole. Or you may be able to push down on the lower control arm enough to get it lined up. A long pry bar helps here. Careful what you pry against.

      Bang the big bolt through and lock it down.

      Torque to spec or as tight as you can get it with a 2' cheater bar. If you live in a rusty area use some Rust Buster a few hours before you attempt the nut removal.

      You can't put it in wrong as the top 3 studs are not equally spaced so there is only one proper way to put them up in there.

      At least this applies to my '03 Eddie 4x4 in non-rusty North Carolina.
       
    12. waskly

      waskly Well-Known Member

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      top of the strut top the threads are long, the stabilizer links prevent the l arm from going down, also clearance and wresting issuse, vs, disconnect the upper arm, remove the sway bar link, pry down on the l arm, strut falls out.

      i never said it cant be removed with out disconnecting anything, its just more work, harder then to remove 2 nuts.
       
    13. Huskerbob

      Huskerbob Active Member

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      Front strut/shock removal

      waskly you are correct,:thumbsup: I just didn't have any problems with mine, HOWEVER, I did omit a step in that I did remove the stabalizer bar link from the lower control arm and the bar. I did this because I was replacing the link but I can see how it helped to let the lower control arm drop down to make removal easier. OOPS :D
       
    14. FordFool2

      FordFool2 Active Member

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      Old strut came out without removing the end link or separating the upper control arm ball joint. However, the new one would not clear. I separated the upper ball joint and was able to get it to go. End link would have been a better choice.
       
    15. rrack

      rrack New Member

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      Awesome write up! I just did the rears on our 05 Mountaineer. A breeze! However, I researched and found a video so I wasn't blind going into it. I'm planning on attacking the fronts this afternoon. However, I can't find any information for the install. What happened to your photos? I'm pretty sure I know what to pull but I welcome any tips to make a job easier...
       
    16. cross6

      cross6 Active Member

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      I hear the monroe quick struts don't last long at all. But I've had good luck with monroe sensa-trac shocks and struts as OE replacement. Wish they offered a sensa-trac version of the quick strut.
       
    17. rrack

      rrack New Member

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      Just finished up the fronts. Those were a booger! Probably because this is an AWD. The cv joint and boot cramp things up a bunch. I couldn't get the upper control arm ball lose so I had to remeve the upper arm bolts that allowed just enough clearance for the top pin to slide in. You're right. The lower seat is just slightly larger than the oem but it also has a thick rubber seat and the OEM is merely steel. The assembly was really mashed up against the cv and axle but just had to really twist things around. Rears took about two hours and the fronts about three. All twisting wrenches. Anyway, I sure hope these last! The OEM had 130k and were still decent. If I'm not mistaken, these Monroe's have a lifetime warranty. Gonna hold em to it too!
       
    18. cross6

      cross6 Active Member

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      Seems like the complaints come from asian car owners. Maybe their truck stuff is better quality. Sounds like it with the added rubber seat.
       
    19. rrack

      rrack New Member

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      K. All four are on and I still have a slight issue. The truck seems to ever so slightly rock from side to side. Very noticeable especially at highway speeds. Just doesn't have a smooth flat ride. I've checked all the sway bar bushings and links and they are all tight and in good condition. The rears seem to have slightly more bounce than I expected. Both the front upper control arm ball joint boots are torn up but I didn't notice any slack. I did have to nearly remove both front upper control arms since I couldn't get the ball joints lose without breaking them. Would this have affected the alignment? Only the upper arms and sway bar links were removed on the fronts and everything buttoned back up tight. I'm planning on replacing the upper links then getting an alignment but wanted to get some input of things to double check. Could I get an alignment then throw the upper arms on later? Just not sure if I have enough time to order the arms before a road trip soon. I'm really hoping alignment and not a defective weak shock/spring. Oh btw, yes, I did check... no uneven tire wear whatsoever...

      2005 AWD 4.0L
       
    20. cross6

      cross6 Active Member

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      Yes the upper arms control camber and caster. Did your truck still have the alignment plates from the factor? They're big plate washers under the UCA bolts and they have teeth to lock into holes on the body to align the arms.
       
    21. rrack

      rrack New Member

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      Funny you mentioned that. Yes, they were still there. One had green paint while the other had pink paint. They were a pain to get the claws back in place. I guess for now, I'll search for new upper arms and balance the tires. Thanks for the info.

      -I could never completely get the bolts on the arm out since it was hitting the top side of the wheel well. I'm gonna have some tinkering to do when I really do replace them. Along with a puller for to separate the ball joint.
       
      Last edited: June 9, 2014
    22. rrack

      rrack New Member

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      The front alignment must be slightly off and the front end is fighting. That would explain the truck "wagging".
       
    23. cross6

      cross6 Active Member

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      Any chance you mixed them up? You also might want to double check them, they have a habit of moving out of place as you tighten the nut and then the teeth get crushed. Then the arm will shift under load even though the nut seems tight.

      I chased that problem on mine for a long time after Ford replaced my upper arms under warranty. Their tech crushed the teeth on all four and I would get the sensation of the front end floating sometimes especially when turning. Finally when the upper arms needed replacing again I did them myself because it was long out of warranty and I discovered the bolts were worked loose and the alignment shims were all crushed.

      They sell alignment kits that replace the factory washers. If you need adjustment it's the only way. Moog sells a cheaper "kit" which is really just giant round washers. But it's really hard to maintain alignment with those as you torque.

      To keep from crushed the alignment shims as you tighten the nut a good trick is to superglue them into place to keep them from moving.
       
    24. rrack

      rrack New Member

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      Pretty sure thy were seated correctly and put em back the way they were. I'm assuming the colors are different adjustment rates... Is there a standard for which color goes where... If I remember, pink was in front and green on the back bracket. It really isn't that noticeable but I know how it used to run. Just the slightest side to side motion on the highway when she should be rolling straight. Maybe the tighter shocks/springs has just enhanced an already out of aligned front end. It's the wife's daily driver and I don't drive it had often. I'm sure there have been injured curbs. As far as I know with 130K miles it has only been aligned once when under warranty at about 90K when one of the upper arms was replaced due to a torn boot. Probably time to get it checked anyway. Gonna get everything balanced tomorrow and double check those busing plates.

      Also searching on eBay for some upper arms. Found a few sets for under $100. Just don't know about the quality. These may be fine but without the boots they're destined to fail sooner with all that grit getting in there.
       
      Last edited: June 9, 2014
    25. cross6

      cross6 Active Member

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      Yeah paint is some code for how much adjustment like you said. I don't know of a standard pairing or anything.

      If the new coils make the truck ride at a different height that might warrant new adjusters.

      If you go cheap ebay stuff I've had really good luck with True Blue brand auto parts.

      http://www.ebay.com/itm/Super-Auto-...ts=Model:Explorer&vxp=mtr&hash=item3a7a80641b

      But I looked on Rockauto and you can also get Moog or Dorman arms for about $100 a pair, too. But look out they hit you hard on shipping.
       
    26. rrack

      rrack New Member

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      Thanks so much. I didn't see those listed. I think I'll go ahead and order a pair then search for an alignment.
       

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