The sway bar, variously called the anti-roll bar or stabilizer bar, serves to control the sideways roll of the body during cornering. While the bar itself rarely fails, the links and bushings around it are prone to wear. If the bar is not rigidly mounted to the car, it cannot do its job properly.
Sway bars of different diameters (thicknesses) can stiffen or soften the roll characteristics of a vehicle. Bushings are easily replaced and well worth the effort in terms of restoring proper cornering manners to your car.
REMOVAL & INSTALLATION
- Loosen the front wheel nuts two or three turns. Elevate the front end and position jackstands under the front control arms. On the 700 series, position the jackstands underneath the jacking attachments.
- Lower the car onto the stands and make sure the stands are properly supporting the control arms.
- Remove the wheels. Remove the underside splashguard panel if so equipped.
- Loosen and remove the upper nut holding the sway bar to the link.
- Remove the upper link nut on the opposite side. The bar now hangs by its two forward brackets.
- Remove the bolts for the two retaining brackets and remove the bar.
- If the link bushings are worn, remove the lower link bolts and remove the entire link. Inspect all the bushings for compression or elongation.
- Replace any bushings that are not almost perfect. The two U-shaped bushings from the front brackets are particularly prone to deforming.
- After replacing bushings as needed, reconnect the lower link to the arm on each side.
- Hold the bar in position and install the front brackets with their bushings. Make sure the slot in the bushing faces forward.
- Install the bar to the link on one side of the car but do not tighten more than two or three turns. Connect the bar to the link on the opposite side and install the bushings and nut.
- Tighten each upper link nut until 1.65 in. (42mm) can be measured between the outer surfaces of the upper and lower washers.
- Reinstall the underside splash panel if necessary, and install the wheel.
- Lower the car to the ground and snug the wheel lugs.