GM Chevy Mid-Size Cars 1964-1988 Repair Guide

Shock Absorbers

Print

TESTING



There are 2 possible clues that the shock absorbers are worn and may need replacement. The first is how the vehicle rides and the second is how the shocks appear. The shocks should be checked if the ride of your vehicle has become increasingly bouncy or if oil is visible on the shock, indicating possible fluid leakage.

Visually inspect the shock absorber if trouble or wear is suspected. If the shock absorber is covered with oil and there is evidence of leakage, the shock is defective and should be replaced.

If there is no sign of excessive leakage (a small amount of weeping is normal) but the ride is still suspect, bounce the car at one corner by pressing down on the rear bumper and releasing. When you have the car bouncing as much as you can, release the fender or bumper. The car should stop bouncing after the first rebound. If the bouncing continues past the center point of the bounce more than once, the shock absorbers are worn and should be replaced.

REMOVAL & INSTALLATION



See Figures 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 and 6

  1. Raise and support the vehicle safely using jackstands under the rear axle.
  2.  
  3. Remove the two upper mounting bolts. On some vehicles, the upper bolts may have a nut positioned above the mount and will require an open-end wrench to keep the nut from turning.
  4.  
  5. If equipped with superlift shock absorbers, disconnect the air line from the shock.
  6.  
  7. While holding the stud hex with a wrench, remove the lower mounting nut. On some vehicles, the tire and wheel assembly may interfere with shock removal. If necessary, remove the tire and wheel assembly from the vehicle.
  8.  
  9. Remove the shock absorber from the car.
  10.  



Click image to see an enlarged view

Fig. Fig. 1: Rear shock absorber mounting

To install:
  1. Install the upper mounting bolts hand-tight.
  2.  
  3. Install the lower stud into the housing bracket and loosely install the nut.
  4.  
  5. Tighten the two upper bolts to 12 ft. lbs. (16 Nm). Remember to use a backup wrench, if necessary.
  6.  
  7. While holding the stud hex, tighten the lower nut to 60 ft. lbs. (81 Nm).
  8.  
  9. On superlift equipped vehicles, install the air hose and add approximately 10 psi of air.
  10.  
  11. If removed for clearance, install the tire and wheel assembly.
  12.  
  13. Remove the jackstands and carefully lower the vehicle.
  14.  



Click image to see an enlarged view

Fig. Fig. 2: Loosen and remove the shock absorber upper mounting bolts



Click image to see an enlarged view

Fig. Fig. 3: On some vehicles, a wrench must be used to keep the upper mount nuts from turning



Click image to see an enlarged view

Fig. Fig. 4: If the shock absorber is to be reinstalled, DO NOT loosen the lower mounting stud without a backup wrench



Click image to see an enlarged view

Fig. Fig. 5: The backup wrench should be placed over the rear of the stud



Click image to see an enlarged view

Fig. Fig. 6: On most models, there should be sufficient clearance between the stud and the tire/wheel assembly to remove the shock

 
label.common.footer.alt.autozoneLogo