Toyota Previa 1991-1997 Repair Information

Shock Absorbers

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REMOVAL & INSTALLATION



See Figures 1 through 6



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Fig. Fig. 1: The rear shocks are located near the coil spring



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Fig. Fig. 2: Remove the lower shock nut and washer with bushing



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Fig. Fig. 3: Lift the shock absorber out of the lower control arm along with the bushing



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Fig. Fig. 4: Remove the upper shock mounting bolt ...



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Fig. Fig. 5: ... a washer will come out with the bolt



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Fig. Fig. 6: Now you can extract the shock from the vehicle

  1. Rasie and support the rear of the vehicle.
  2.  
  3. ßupport the rear axle housing with a jack.
  4.  
  5. Disconnect the shock absorber from the lower control arm.
  6.  
  7. Renove the bushings and washer.
  8.  
  9. Remove the upper shock bolt and slide the absorber off the pin.
  10.  

To install:
  1. Postion the shock on to the upper pin with the washer on the inside.
  2.  
  3. Place the bushings and washer on the bottom of the shock.
  4.  
  5. Place the shock with components onto the lower control arm.
  6.  
  7. Tighten the upper bolt to 27 ft. lbs. (37 Nm).
  8.  
  9. tighten the lower nut until the bolt protrudes 0.0059 inch (1.5mm).
  10.  
  11. Lower the jack from the axle housing.
  12.  
  13. Lower the vehicle.
  14.  

TESTING



See Figure 7

The purpose of the shock absorber is simply to limit the motion of the spring during compression and rebound cycles. If the vehicle is not equipped with these motion dampers, the up and down motion would multiply until the vehicle was alternately trying to leap off the ground and to pound itself into the pavement.

Contrary to popular rumor, the shocks do not affect the ride height of the vehicle. This is controlled by other suspension components such as springs and tires. Worn shock absorbers can affect handling; if the front of the vehicle is rising or falling excessively, the "footprint" of the tires changes on the pavement and steering is affected.

The simplest test of the shock absorber is simply push down on one corner of the unladen vehicle and release it. Observe the motion of the body as it is released. In most cases, it will come up beyond it original rest position, dip back below it and settle quickly to rest. This shows that the damper is controlling the spring action. Any tendency to excessive pitch (up-and-down) motion or failure to return to rest within 2-3 cycles is a sign of poor function within the shock absorber. Oil-filled shocks may have a light film of oil around the seal, resulting from normal breathing and air exchange. This should NOT be taken as a sign of failure, but any sign of thick or running oil definitely indicates failure. Gas filled shocks may also show some film at the shaft; if the gas has leaked out, the shock will have almost no resistance to motion.



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Fig. Fig. 7: When fluid is seeping out of the shock absorber, it's time to replace it

While each shock absorber can be replaced individually, it is recommended that they be changed as a pair (both front or both rear) to maintain equal response on both sides of the vehicle. Chances are quite good that if one has failed, its mate is weak also.

 
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