Toyota Tercel 1984-1994 Repair Guide

Shock Absorbers


This procedure applies to 4WD models only. Refer to the MacPherson strut procedures on other models.


A good way to test the shock absorbers is to intermittently apply downward pressure to the side of the car until it is moving up and down for almost its full suspension travel. Release it and observe its recovery. If the car bounces once or twice after having been released and then comes to a rest, the shocks are all right. If the car continues to bounce, the shocks will probably require replacement. If oil is leaking from the cylinder portion of the assembly, the shock absorber must be replaced.


See Figures 1 and 2

The suspension on any vehicle is assembled with high grade, hardened fasteners. NEVER substitute a fastener of inferior load rating when assembling a suspension component!

  1. Raise the rear of the car and support the rear axle with jackstands.

Click image to see an enlarged view

Fig. Fig. 1: Removing the shock absorber upper retaining nuts

  1. Remove the shock absorber upper retaining nuts. These are usually accessed form inside the vehicle.

On some models, upper retaining nut removal may require removing the rear seat.

  1. Remove the bolt securing the shock absorber to the rear axle housing.

Click image to see an enlarged view

Fig. Fig. 2: Removing the bolt securing the shock to the rear axle housing

  1. Remove the shock absorber.

To install:
  1. Inspect the shock for wear, leaks or other signs of damage.
  3. Install the shock absorber, then thread the upper retaining nut onto the shaft.
  5. Hold the shaft with an adjustable wrench, then torque the nut to 18 ft. lbs. (25 Nm).
  7. Connect the shock absorber to the rear axle housing, then torque the bolt to 27 ft. lbs. (37 Nm).
  9. Lower the vehicle and check for proper operation.