GM Chevy Mid-Size Cars 1964-1988 Repair Guide

Upper Control Arm

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REMOVAL & INSTALLATION



See Figure 1

  1. Raise and support the vehicle safely using jackstands. The jackstands or a floor jack must be positioned under the lower control arm between the spring seat and ball joint in order to allow the vehicle's weight to retain the spring.
  2.  
  3. Remove the tire and wheel assembly.
  4.  
  5. Separate the upper ball joint from the steering knuckle using a suitable separator tool. For details refer to the upper ball joint procedures earlier in this section.
  6.  
  7. Remove the control arm shaft-to-frame nuts.
  8.  

Tape the shims together and identify them so that they can be installed in the positions from which they were removed.

  1. Remove the bolts which attach the control arm shaft to the frame and remove the control arm. Note the positions of the bolts for installation purposes.
  2.  

To install:
  1. Install the control arm and insert the shaft-to-frame bolts, making sure that they are installed in the same position they were in before removal. Position the shims in their their original positions.
  2.  
  3. Use free running nuts (not locknuts) to pull serrated bolts through the frame. Then install and tighten the locknuts starting with the thinner shim pack first. Tighten the shaft-to-frame nuts to 90 ft. lbs. (122 Nm) for vehicles through 1974, to 75 ft. lbs. (102 Nm) for 1975-77 vehicles or to 40-48 ft. lbs. (54-62 Nm) for 1978 and later models.
  4.  
  5. Install the upper ball joint to the steering knuckle, then install the retaining nut and a new cotter pin. Do not back off the torque specification in order to insert the pin.
  6.  
  7. Install the tire and wheel assembly, then remove the supports and lower the vehicle.
  8.  
  9. If the control arm bushings were replaced or the pivot shaft nuts were loosened, bounce the front end a few times in order to center the bushings. Then, tighten the pivot shaft nuts to 40 ft. lbs. (54 Nm) for vehicles through 1973, to 65 ft. lbs. (88 Nm) for 1974 vehicles, to 75 ft. lbs. (102 Nm) for 1975-80 vehicles or to 85 ft. lbs. (115 Nm) for 1981 and later vehicles.
  10.  



Click image to see an enlarged view

Fig. Fig. 1: Example of a common upper control arm installation

CONTROL ARM BUSHING REPLACEMENT



See Figure 2

  1. Remove the upper control arm from the vehicle.
  2.  
  3. Loosen and remove the nuts from the ends of the pivot shaft.
  4.  
  5. Using a suitable bushing removal tool, press the bushings out of the control arm.
  6.  

To install:
  1. Using a bushing driver, press the new bushings into the control arm and over the ends of the pivot shaft. For late model vehicles the bushings should be installed 0.02-0.50 in. (0.5-13.3mm) from the face of the control arm to the bushing outer sleeve.
  2.  
  3. Loosely install the nuts to the ends of the pivot shaft, then install the upper control arm to the vehicle.
  4.  
  5. Once the control arm is installed and the vehicle is resting on its suspension, bounce the front end a few times in order to center the bushings. Then, tighten the pivot shaft end nuts to 40 ft. lbs. (54 Nm) for vehicles through 1973, to 65 ft. lbs. (88 Nm) for 1974 vehicles, to 75 ft. lbs. (102 Nm) for 1975-80 vehicles or to 85 ft. lbs. (115 Nm) for 1981 and later vehicles.
  6.  



Click image to see an enlarged view

Fig. Fig. 2: Exploded view of the control arm and bushing assembly-1982 and later shown

 
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