Repair Pontiac Mid-size 1974-1983 Repair Guide

Shock Absorbers



Examine the shock absorbers following the "Testing" procedure given for front shocks.

Except Superlift System

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Fig. Fig. 1 Shock absorber mounting-except vehicles with the Superlift shock system

  1. Jack up the rear end of the car and support it with jackstands. Support the rear axle with a hydraulic jack to prevent stretching the brake hose.
  3. Remove the nut from the lower end stud of the shock. Tap the shock free from the bracket.
  5. Disconnect the shock at the top by removing the bolts, nuts and lockwashers. Remove the shock from the car.

Shock absorbers are often difficult to remove from their mounting points due to age (rust, etc). A liberal application of penetrating oil around the bushings and bolts before removing any nuts is recommended.

Superlift Shock Absorbers

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Fig. Fig. 2 Rear shock absorber upper mount (A) and relation to coil spring (B)

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Fig. Fig. 3 When removing the rear shock absorber, spray the lower mounting bolt with lubricant, let set ...

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Fig. Fig. 4 ... then remove the lower shock retaining bolt

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Fig. Fig. 5 Use this chart to test the Superlift shock system for malfunctioning

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Fig. Fig. 6 When disconnecting the Superlift air line clip, be careful as not to damage the clip

The Superlift shock system is an air-assist leveling device consisting of a neoprene boot and an air cylinder, built around a hydraulic shock absorber. Depending on the load carried in the car, the Superlift system can be adjusted to maintain a level ride by increasing air pressure (a valve is located in the rear bumper or trunk area on models so equipped).

The Superlift shocks are removed from the car in the same manner as conventional rear shocks, except that the air line is disconnected from the Superlift before the shock unit is removed from the car. Also, to prevent damage to the neoprene boot on the Superlift unit, do not rotate the free end of the shock (when disconnected from the car) when the opposite end is still attached. Note the air line clip illustration when removing the air line.

If you suspect an air leak in the system, consult the chart above for the appropriate test procedures.