Continental 2000-2002

Lower Control Arms

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Bushing Replacement



The control arm bushings are serviced with the control arm as an assembly.

The control arm bushings are integral with the lower control arm. If the bushings are defective, the entire lower control arm must be replaced.

Removal & Installation




NOTE
Disable the air suspension before raising the vehicle. The switch is located on the left side of the luggage compartment.

  1. Before servicing the vehicle, refer to the Precautions section.
  2.  
  3. Turn the air suspension switch to the OFF position.
  4.  
  5. Remove or disconnect the following:

    Front wheel
     
    Air suspension height sensor from the front air suspension sensor pin, if equipped
     
    Wheel speed sensor wiring harness
     

  6.  
  7. Nut and the washer from the front suspension lower arm strut.
  8.  
  9. Lower control arm-to-ball joint nut. Discard the nut.
    WARNING
    Do not allow the front wheel knuckle and the front wheel driveshaft joint to move outward. Over extension of the front wheel driveshaft joint will result in separation of the driveshaft internal parts, causing failure of the joint.


    NOTE
    Make sure the steering column is in the unlocked position, and do not use a hammer to separate the ball joint from the front suspension lower arm. Use extreme care not to damage the boot seal.

  10.  
  11. Using a suitable puller, separate the ball joint from the lower control arm.

    Click image to see an enlarged view

    Fig. Use a puller to separate the ball joint from the lower control arm

  12.  
  13. Remove and discard the front suspension lower arm inner pivot bolt and nut.

    Click image to see an enlarged view

    Fig. Remove and discard the front suspension lower arm inner pivot bolt and nut

  14.  
  15. Remove the front suspension lower arm and washer from the front suspension lower arm strut.

    Click image to see an enlarged view

    Fig. Remove the front suspension lower arm and washer from the front suspension lower arm strut

  16.  

To install:

  1. Install or connect the following:

    Washer onto the front suspension lower arm strut
     
    Lower control arm onto the front suspension lower arm strut
     
    Lower control arm. Tighten the pivot bolt to 73-98 ft. lbs. (98-132 Nm).
     
    Lower control arm strut. Tighten the nut to 73-98 ft. lbs. (98-132 Nm).
     
    Lower ball joint. Use a new nut and tighten to 50-67 ft. lbs. (68-92 Nm).
     
    Wheel speed sensor wiring harness
     
    Height sensor
     
    Front wheel
     

  2.  
  3. Turn the air suspension switch to the ON position.
  4.  
  5. Check the wheel alignment and adjust as necessary.
  6.  

  1. Raise the front of the vehicle and position safety stands on the frame behind the lower control arms. Remove the wheel and tire assembly.
  2.  
  3. Remove the brake caliper and suspend with a length of wire; do not let the caliper hang by the brake hose. Remove the brake rotor and dust shield. Remove the anti-lock brake sensor, if equipped.
  4.  
  5. Remove the jounce bumper; inspect and save for installation if in good condition. Remove the shock absorber.
  6.  
  7. On 1988-91 vehicles, disconnect the stabilizer link from the lower arm.
  8.  
  9. Disconnect the steering center link from the pitman arm.
  10.  
  11. Remove the cotter pin and loosen the lower ball joint stud nut 1-2 turns.
  12.  


NOTE
Do not remove the nut at this time.

  1. On 1988-91 vehicles, install a suitable ball joint press tool to place the ball joint stud under compression. With the stud under compression, tap the spindle sharply with a hammer to loosen the stud in the spindle. Remove the ball joint press tool.
  2.  
  3. On 1992-99 vehicles, tap the spindle boss sharply to relieve the stud pressure. Tap the spindle sharply, near the lower stud, with a hammer to loosen the stud in the spindle.
  4.  
  5. Place a floor jack under the lower arm. Remove the coil spring as described in this Section.
  6.  
  7. Remove the ball joint nut and remove the lower control arm.
  8.  

To install:

  1. Position the arm assembly ball joint stud into the spindle and install the nut. Tighten to 80-120 ft. lbs. (108-163 Nm). Continue to tighten until the slot for the cotter pin is aligned. Install a new cotter pin.
  2.  
  3. Position the coil spring into the upper spring pocket and raise the lower arm, aligning the holes in the arm with the holes in the crossmember. Install the bolts and nuts with the washer installed on the front bushing. Do not tighten at this time.
  4.  


NOTE
Make sure the pigtail of the lower coil of the spring is in the proper location of the seat on the lower arm, between the 2 holes.

  1. Remove the spring compressor tool.
  2.  
  3. Connect the steering center link at the pitman arm and install the nut. Tighten to 44-46 ft. lbs. (59-63 Nm). Continue to tighten until the slot for the cotter pin is aligned. Install a new cotter pin.
  4.  
  5. Install the shock absorber and the jounce bumper.
  6.  
  7. Install the dust shield, rotor and caliper. Install the anti-lock brake sensor, if equipped.
  8.  
  9. On 1988-91 vehicles, position the stabilizer link to the lower control arm and install the link, bushing and retaining nut. Tighten to 9-15 ft. lbs. (12-20 Nm).
  10.  
  11. Install the wheel and tire assembly and lower the vehicle. With the vehicle supported on the wheels and tires at normal curb height, tighten the lower control arm-to-crossmember bolts to 109-140 ft. lbs. (148-190 Nm).
  12.  
  13. Check the front end alignment.
  14.  

 
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