I would like to know if the replacement of the front control arm bushings on a Malibu 2002, is something that can be easily done without going to the dealer.
I am doing most of my mechanic work but I don't know what challenge will pose the installation of the new bushings i.e. press-fitting them in place..??
I did the work last weekend.
Bought the vertical bushings (aftermarket): they look like a hockey puck, and was able to replace the old ones...
Before doing the job, I spoke with someone that works in a GM Dealership and he had told me that the GM mechanics at his use a hammer to drive the new bushings in place...no need for a press....
Sure enough, once the old bushings were removed, I was able to put the new ones in place without much trouble by driving them in place with a hammer...
And as Tripleauto said, it was a kinda tricky to put the control arm back in place, because the rear vertical bushing was hard to reinsert back in it's slot, ...
One advice though.....take the brake disk out before putting the control arm back in place...it's gonna give you a bit more room ...
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To access the upper control arm,
remove the shock absorber and the strut bar. Also, disconnect the sway
bar from the lower control arm, if your particular Ram model is equipped
with it. After that, you can hold the coil spring in place with a
Secure the wheel hub assembly to the chassis using a wire before you
disconnect the upper ball joint. This will prevent damage to the brake
hose. When ready, release the ball joint using a ball-stud loosening
tool (see Resources).
The upper control arm mounts to the chassis with a cam bolt assembly.
Once removed, you can place the control arm on a vise and remove the
bushings using a bushing service tool (see Resources). When installing
the new bushings, do not use any lubricant but make sure the flange on
the bushing end seats properly on the arm bore. Then re-install the
upper control arm. When finished, take your Dodge vehicle to a good shop
to align the front suspension.
Lower Control Arm Bushings
Remove the shock absorber and
strut bar. If your particular model is equipped with a sway bar,
disconnect it from the lower control arm.
Secure the coil spring with a spring compressor and release the lower
ball joint from the wheel/hub assembly using a ball stud loosening tool
Now you can release the lower control arm by removing the rear
mounting bolts. Remove the bushings with a bushing service tool (see
Resources). When installing the new bushings, do not use lubricant and
make sure they seat properly on the control arm bore. Then replace the
lower control arm. When finished, take your Dodge vehicle to a good shop
to align the front suspension
Broken stabalizer links, broken stabilizer bar, and worn out stabilizer bar bushings are fairly common. As well as the rear bushings on the front lower control arms. A quick inspection of the front end and you should be able to tell if the links are bad, bar is broken, or the lower control arm bushings are separated. If the rear bushings on the front lower control arms are seperated the lower control arm will look like it is resting on the subframe.
Here are the instruction on how to replace your control arm bushing. please not that there is a special tool needed that you will need to get from you auto parts retailer. you can usually rent these tools.
Turn the control arm over in the arbor press, then position the
arm so that it is supported by the receiver tool MB-990799 as shown.
Position the new bushing into the control arm so it is square
with the bushing hole. Position the installer tool MB-6644-1 or
equivalent on top of the bushing, with the bushing setting in the
recessed area of the installer tool. Press the bushing into the control
Press the control arm bushing
into the control arm until the installer tool squarely bottoms against
the surface of the control arm. When the installer tool squarely bottoms
on the control arm, the bushing is installed in the arm in the correct
Install the tension strut into the strut bushing in the control
arm. Position the tension strut in the control arm with the word FRONT
stamped in the tension strut positioned away from the control arm. With
an open end wrench on the flat of the tension strut to stop the tension
strut from turning. Tighten the NEW tension strut-to-control arm
retaining nut to 110 ft. lbs. (150 Nm).
Install the lower control arm and tension strut back onto the
vehicle. Refer to the Lower Control Arm procedure earlier in this
Control Arm-to-Tension Strut Bushing
To replace the control arm tension strut bushing,
the control arm and tension strut assembly must be removed. The removal
of the bushing requires the use of an arbor press.
Thoroughly lubricate the replacement tension strut bushing,
control arm and installer tool 6644-3 or equivalent with a silicone
By hand, install the tension strut bushing into the large end of
the installer tool. Press the bushing into the installer tool as far as
it will go by hand.
Position the control arm in the arbor press so that the tension
strut hole in the control arm is centered on the receiver tool MB-990799
or equivalent. Position the installer tool with the previously
installed bushing, inside of the tension strut bushing hole in the
control arm. Position the installer tool on top of the tension strut
bushing. Using the arbor press, press the tension strut bushing into the
control arm. As the bushing is being pressed into the arm, a pop will
be heard. When the pop is heard, the installer tool will slightly move
up off the control arm. At this time remove the control arm assembly
from the press and pull the tool MB-6644-3 off of the tension strut
bushing in the control arm.
Well there are stabilizer bar bushings, control arm bushings and strut mount bushings. The stabilizer bushings are usally bolted around the the stabilizer bar and attach to the frame. The control arm bushings are usally pressed into the control arms. The strut mount bushings are on top of the struts. Normally they are replaced as needed. The strut mount bushings are good to do when replacing the struts.
Do not disassemble the upper arm. If the ball joint or bushings are faulty, or the upper arm is damaged, the entire upper arm must be replaced.
Raise and support the vehicle safely.
Remove the front wheels. Support the lower control arm assembly with a floor jack.
Separate the upper ball joint from the steering knuckle using a ball joint separator tool.
Remove the self-locking nuts from the upper arm anchor bolts. Remove the upper arm from the vehicle.
Do not disassemble the upper arm. If the ball joint or bushings are faulty, or the upper arm is damaged, the entire upper arm must be replaced. To install: Use new self-locking nuts when installing the upper arm and strut.
Install the upper control arm assembly into the strut tower.
Connect the upper ball joint.
Install the front wheels and lower the vehicle.
With all four of the vehicle's wheels on the ground, torque the upper control arm nuts to 47 ft. lbs. (65 Nm). Torque the castle nut to 32 ft. lbs. (44 Nm); then, only tighten it enough to install a new cotter pin.
Tighten the wheel nuts to 80 ft. lbs. (110 Nm).
Check and adjust the vehicle's front end alignment.
The bushings on the front lower control arms are replaceable on most models. This procedure requires the use of a press and may be above the skill range of the average driveway enthusiast. It is recommended that this procedure be done by a qualified machine shop if you are not skilled in the proper use of a press.
Remove the lower control arm that is in need of new bushings.
It is recommended that both the left and right lower control arm bushings be replaced at the same time. The vehicles handling may become unstable if there are new bushings on one side of the car and worn ones on the other.
Set up the control arm in a press.
Using a impact socket of the correct length and size, press out the old bushing.
Install the new bushing by slowly using the press to push it into the control arm.
WARNINGExcessive force could cause the bushing to bend or tear so be careful.
Once the bushing is properly seated in the control arm, remove the arm from the press and install it on the vehicle.
I just did this job on my 98 regal, and I own the service manuals also. The lower control arm bushing that usually goes, is the front one. The rear one doesn't usually go, it is horizontally mounted. The front one for some reason is vertical. The control arm must be removed, and put in a vise. The front bushings outer metal sleeve, must be driven out with a chisel. It comes out easily. The new bushing can be tapped in with a hammer. Hope this helps!
Sorry guys not a solution but I too have an 04 Quest, which supposedly has worn controller arm bushings and Nissan says I need both controller arms replaced. For a total of $950!!! I was told that they need to replace the whole arm and cannot replace only the bushings. Now reading the posts on this site I find that to be untrue. Seems all I need to spend is anywhere from $25 to $35 per bushing.