GM Malibu/Cutlass 1997-2000

Lower Control Arm

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REMOVAL & INSTALLATION





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Fig. The stabilizer bar link is mounted to the lower control arm



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Fig. Remove and discard the lower ball joint cotter pin



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Fig. Use a wrench to loosen and remove the ball joint retaining nut



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Fig. Use a suitable prytool to separate the lower ball joint/control arm from the steering knuckle



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Fig. Location of the control arm-to-subframe mounting bolts

  1. Raise and safely support vehicle.
  2.  
  3. Remove the tire and wheel assembly.
  4.  
  5. Remove the nut attaching the stabilizer link to the stabilizer bar.
  6.  
  7. Remove the ball joint cotter pin and nut. Discard the cotter pin.
  8.  


NOTE
Care must be exercised to prevent the axle shaft joints from being over-extended. When either end of the shaft is disconnected, over-extension of the joint could result in separation of internal components and possible joint failure. Failure to observe this can result in interior joint or boot damage and possible joint failure.

  1. Remove the ball joint from the steering knuckle using a suitable tool.
  2.  
  3. Remove the bolts attaching the control arm to the subframe.
  4.  
  5. Remove the control arm from the vehicle.
  6.  

To install:

  1. Place the control arm into position and install the bolts (leave loose to allow movement) attaching the control arm to the subframe.
  2.  
  3. Install the ball joint stud into the steering knuckle and install the nut finger-tight.
  4.  
  5. Tighten the ball joint nut to 41 ft. lbs. (55 Nm) and install a new cotter pin. If necessary to align the cotter pin holes, you can tighten the nut up to 50 ft. lbs. (65 Nm). NEVER loosen a nut to install a cotter pin.
  6.  
  7. Connect the stabilizer link to stabilizer bar and tighten the nut to 13 ft. lbs. (17 Nm).
  8.  
  9. Install tire and wheel assembly.
  10.  
  11. Lower the vehicle. Tighten the wheel lug nuts to 100 ft. lbs. (140 Nm).
  12.  
  13. With vehicle at curb height, tighten control arm bolts as follows:
    1. Front control arm-to-subframe bolt: 90 ft. lbs. (125 Nm).
    2.  
    3. Rear control arm-to-subframe bolt: 125 ft. lbs. (170 Nm).
    4.  

  14.  
  15. Have the wheel alignment checked and adjusted as necessary.
  16.  

CONTROL ARM BUSHING REPLACEMENT



  1. Remove the lower control arm as outlined earlier in this section.
  2.  
  3. Install the proper bushing removal tools.
  4.  
  5. Coat the threads of the tool with extreme pressure lubricant.
  6.  
  7. Remove the lower control arm bushings.
  8.  

To install:

  1. Install the bushing installation tools.
  2.  



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Fig. View of the front and rear lower control arm bushings

  1. Coat the outer case of the bushing with a light coating of a suitable lubricant, then install the lower control arm bushings.
  2.  
  3. As outlined earlier, install the lower control arm.
  4.  

 
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