Do-it-yourself projects can save a ton of money. When your hear about those DIY types, you’re probably thinking about home improvement projects – adding insulation to the attic, putting up fencing around the yard, installing a water heater, things like that. Who needs an “expert” handyman when many tasks can be done by you?
That trend has spread from the bathroom, kitchen and living room into the garage. The DIYers have applied similar home improvement principles and now perform basic auto maintenance and make their own small repairs. With some car mechanics charging over $50 per hour for labor, doing it yourself makes a lot of sense.
Each car has a slightly different configuration, but the process of changing shocks and struts generally follows the steps listed below.
1. Before starting your project, make sure you have the best possible replacement parts. BuyAutoParts.com has OEM grade shocks and struts for a wide variety of makes & models – so contact us first!
2. With parts ready to go, safely lift your car with a jack and support with a jack stand under the frame rail, if necessary. Some larger cars and trucks require extra support; always double-check your user’s manual if you’re not sure.
3. Remove the wheel.
4. Locate the lower mount bolts and the upper mounts. The lower bolts are typically near the lower suspension or axle, while the upper mounts are secured through a fixed mount plate or shock mount (eyelet type).
5. Remove the lower bolts first, then remove the upper mounts. The old shock can now be replaced with the new part. Attach the new shock with the upper bolts first. Once they’re secured, fasten the lower bolts.
6. For struts, the process is very similar. Struts are usually used on the front axle. After putting the rear wheel back on, safely jack up the car and remove the front wheel. Remove the top bolts first, then the lower mounts. Keep in mind that struts will have more than a single lower mount.
7. Replace the new strut with the top bolts first (accessible on most car models directly through the fender), then attach the lower bolts.
8. Put the wheel back on.
9. Repeat the process on the other side – remember, it’s always a good idea to replace your shocks and struts in pairs.
10. Enjoy a job well done – and also the money you just saved by doing it yourself!
Just like other projects, changing your own shocks & struts will go more smoothly with a helping hand. And if your buddy just happens to be a mechanic, all the better!
If you’re ready to tackle a DIY shocks and struts job, BuyAutoParts.com offers OEM quality parts at affordable prices. For any questions or concerns, please call our in-house shocks and struts experts at (888) 907-7225. We can help you select the parts and components you need to start – and more importantly, finish – your auto repair project.
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Written by Dara Greaney