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Sway Bar Bushing Replacement

Gustav129

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City, State
Spokane Valley, WA
Year, Model & Trim Level
1997 Eddie Bauer
I don't know if this would be worthy of sticky or not, but I'll post it anyways.

Part 1 (Intro and Before Pics):

Tools used:
- 11/16" deep well socket 1/2" dr. (original bushings are extremely squished)
- 11/16" socket 1/2" dr.
- 5/8" wrench (for oem sway bar equipment)
- 11/16" wrench (for new equipment)
- 15mm socket 1/2" dr.
- 1" extension
- 2" extention
- 1/2" dr ratchet
- 1/2" dr breaker bar
- jack
- jackstands
- PB Knocker loose
- 6 pack of Diet Coke
- 3 Johnsonville Brats

NAPA Part# 18155HD (Sway bar repair kit, $13.44)
NAPA Part# HB1786 (Sway bar to frame bushing kit, $21.29)

Driver's side:
SwayBarBushings001.png

SwayBarBushings002.png

SwayBarBushings003.png


Passenger's side:
SwayBarBushings004.png

SwayBarBushings005.png

SwayBarBushings006.png
 


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Gustav129

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1997 Eddie Bauer
Part 2: Sway Bar to Frame Bushing Disassembly

Just pop off the four bolts with the 15mm Socket

SwayBarBushings007.png

SwayBarBushings008.png

SwayBarBushings009.png

SwayBarBushings010.png

SwayBarBushings011.png

At least I know it's not Mexican or Chinese made crap
SwayBarBushings012.png

New vs old
SwayBarBushings013.png
 




Gustav129

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1997 Eddie Bauer
Part 3: Sway Bar Repair Kit

Remove sway bar end bolts and remove from truck.
Head of original bolt has 5/8" head, and 11/16" nut.

SwayBarBushings014.png

SwayBarBushings015.png

*These are on backwards. I did change them when I got out to the truck. Only put them on there so they wouldn't get lost
SwayBarBushings016.png

SwayBarBushings017.png

Old vs New. Notice the thread damage on old bolts because they were squished so much
SwayBarBushings018.png
 




Gustav129

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Year, Model & Trim Level
1997 Eddie Bauer
Part 4: Reassembly

Took a break and grilled a pack of Johnsonville brats and had a couple Diet Cokes.

Gave it a good wipe down, removing all the caked dirt and oil
SwayBarBushings019.png


And then replaced everything in reverse order. New bolt head is 11/16"
SwayBarBushings020.png

SwayBarBushings021.png


Total time including getting parts, and a long lunch break, 1 1/2 hours. Now I know how it's done, and can get it done faster next time.

One trick, put nut on nuts on the bolt ends on turn first, then put the frame bushing brackets on and tighten. Then go back to the 11/16" nuts and tighten until bushing just start to bulge.
 




jimbo74

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talk to a moderator, this might actually be worthy of a free elite explorer membership
 




tipdrill

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'00 XLT 4dr 2wd
I'm going to do this on Saturday.

I'm thinking about getting some polyurethane bushings from JC Whitney.
are there any advantages to this?
 




GeorgeR

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FWIW, The poly busings that I have obtained from JCWhitney in the past were crapola. Disintegrated in a very short time period.
 




Ray Lobato

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One thing about poly bushings is they tend to squeak after awhile.
Try the black graphite impregnated poly bushings. They don't squeak nearly as much.
Nice writeup, I'll put a sticky on it. :)
 




tipdrill

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Thanks, i will stay away from those then.

Has anyone tried the "Energy Suspension" bushings from autozone?

I'm looking for neoprene...
 




Gustav129

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Thanks, i will stay away from those then.

Has anyone tried the "Energy Suspension" bushings from autozone?

I'm looking for neoprene...

I actually run them on my Civic. I like them. I got mine through Summit though.
 




xFatcatx

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99 SPORT
ok gonna sound stupid here as i always do. i think i need to do this, i guess needed or not i just want to. last time i had a flat and was at schwab i had em take a peek at my front end, he said the only thing that could use to be replaced were the upper sway bar bushings. my truck has a faint squeek going over any kind of bump coming from the front end. what are the symptoms this needs to be done besides knowing what the bushings should look like. it looks to me from your post that you replace upper and lower bushings at the same time right?

on your pic "Part:3 Remove sway bar end bolts and remove from truck." Are you only removing one bolt on each side that is beneath the lower bushing and the entire sway bar will come out after you have the frame brackets off?

i have a 99 Sport, 4wd, 4.O SOHC. would they be the same parts that you got at Napa? if so ill just get those, if not do you have any suggestions what i should buy, i usually buy the cheapest but that kicks my azz sometimes.

and lastly is an allignment needed afterwards?

keep in mind im not stupid i just have never done this, i didnt even know what sway bars looked like before i saw your pictures. thanks and great post
 




daffy

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Gustav,

Is there something rubbing on your inside left front tire?

Looks pretty polished to me :)


xfatcatx:

I would suggest the energy suspension kit from Autozone, $45 and it has everything you need, that's the one I used, and an happy.

No need for an alignment, unless you really whack something and bend it while you're under there, slim chance of that though.

BTW, it is a good chunk of metal, if you're under it, watch you noggin, it'll hurt if it collides with it.
 








zembonez

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Really helpful post. Nicely done and explained.

Thanks for taking the time to do it.
 




rob17san

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How do you know when to stop tightening the sway bar end link bolts? Mine seem to go forever until they got squished. Does it matter if they are real tight, or somewhat looser? Mine are the energy suspension brand and came with a locking nut. I did mine today and they came out good. Rides smoother in general, somewhat stiffer on a bump.
 




daffy

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To me it's more of a 'feel' thing. Once the bushings squished out a bit, I stopped. I think there is a torque spec somewhere, I just got them a bit rounded.
 




T

ThePhoenix

I did the end links in the my drive way in about 20 minutes...with a jack and two wrenches. It was well worth it as the orginial ones had failed big time. tighetned up my steering...the was on my 96 before I wrecked it
 










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storlied

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Could taking off the front sway bar wear/damage cv joints? how's the driving on the road?
 




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