Nissan 240SX/Altima 1993-1998 Repair Guide

MacPherson Struts

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REMOVAL & INSTALLATION



See Figures 1 and 2



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Fig. Fig. 1: The front strut assembly is removed by disconnecting it at the steering knuckle (arrows)



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Fig. Fig. 2: Three fasteners attach the strut to the strut tower in the engine compartment

  1. Raise and safely support the vehicle.
  2.  
  3. Remove the wheel.
  4.  
  5. Matchmark the strut-to-steering knuckle location.
  6.  
  7. Disconnect the brake hose from the strut.
  8.  
  9. Support the transverse link using a jack.
  10.  
  11. Remove the strut-to-steering knuckle bolts.
  12.  
  13. Support the strut assembly and remove the 3 upper strut-to-body nuts.
  14.  
  15. Remove the strut assembly from the vehicle.
  16.  

To install:
  1. Position the strut assembly in the vehicle.
  2.  
  3. Support the strut assembly and install the 3 upper strut-to-body nuts. Tighten to 29-40 ft. lbs. (39-54 Nm).
  4.  
  5. Install new strut-to-steering knuckle bolts. Align the matchmarks and tighten the bolts to 87-108 ft. lbs. (118-4 Nm).
  6.  
  7. Connect the brake hose to the strut.
  8.  
  9. Install the wheel.
  10.  
  11. Lower the vehicle.
  12.  
  13. Check the front wheel alignment.
  14.  

OVERHAUL



See Figures 3 and 4



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Fig. Fig. 3: When installing the coil spring on the strut, it must be positioned as illustrated



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Fig. Fig. 4: Install the upper spring seat with its cutout facing the outer side of the vehicle


CAUTION
The coil springs are under considerable tension, and can exert enough force to cause serious injury. Coil springs on all models must be removed with the aid of a coil spring compressor. If you don't have one, don't try to improvise by using something else; you could risk injury. Disassemble the struts using only the proper tools, and use extreme caution.

  1. Remove the strut from the vehicle.
  2.  
  3. Secure the strut assembly in a vise.
  4.  
  5. Attach the spring compressor to the spring, leaving the top few coils free.
  6.  
  7. Remove the dust cap from the top of the strut to expose the center nut, if a dust cap is provided.
  8.  
  9. Compress the spring just far enough to permit the strut insulator to be turned by hand. Remove the self-locking center nut.
  10.  
  11. Remove the strut insulator, strut bearing, oil seal, upper spring seat and bound bumper rubber from the top of the strut.
  12.  

Note the sequence of removal and be sure to assemble the parts in the same order.

  1. Remove the spring with the spring compressor still attached. You are now left with the replaceable portion of the strut.
  2.  

To assemble:
  1. Inspect the strut as follows:
    1. Inspect the strut assembly for smooth operation through its full stroke, both compression and extension.
    2.  
    3. Check for oil leakage occurring on the welded or gland packing portion.
    4.  
    5. Check the piston rod for cracks, deformation or other damage.
    6.  
    7. Check the strut mounting insulator cemented rubber-to- metal portion for separation or cracks.
    8.  
    9. Check the throughst bearing parts for abnormal wear, noise or excessive rattle in an axial direction.
    10.  
    11. Check the spring and insulator for cracks, deformation or other damage.
    12.  

  2.  
  3. Reassemble the strut in the reverse order of disassembly.
  4.  
  5. When installing the coil on the strut, it must be positioned so that the flat tail is on top and the paint marks are as illustrated.
  6.  
  7. Install the upper spring seat with its cutout facing the outer side of the vehicle, in line with the strut-to-knuckle attachment points.
  8.  
  9. Replace the strut lower mounting nuts.
  10.  
  11. Tighten the strut rod nut to 43-58 ft. lbs. (59-78 Nm).
  12.  

 
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