How to Replace Shocks & Struts in a Volkswagen Jetta
This video shows how to complete a suspension job on a 2008 Volkswagen Jetta. We'll install shocks in the rear, but in the front we're going to install these Duralast loaded strut assemblies for a faster install and better ride control. Now, you can do this job at home with hand tools. These are the tools you'll need for the job. Don't have a torque wrench? Don't worry. You can borrow it from AutoZone through the Loan a Tool program. It's free. You'll also need a good hydraulic jack, some jack stands, and some wheel chocks. Make sure the car is in park with the parking brake on before starting. You may also need some PB blaster to loosen up tough nuts and bolts. Now, for this one we'll start under the hood. We need to mark the wiper position and remove the wiper arm nuts using a 13 millimeter.
Now remove the weatherstripping and you're just going to lift up to remove that cowl, and then you'll be able to see the top of the strut assembly. Then remove the lug nut cap covers using a flat blade screwdriver.
Now let's move down to the wheel. Loosen the lug nuts, jack up the vehicle from a secure point, and place it on jack stand. Then remove the lug nuts and the wheel. We're going to remove this ABS sensor and then use a 10 millimeter to remove the brake hose bracket. We'll remove the sway bar link nut using an 18 millimeter wrench and an eight millimeter triple square to remove the sway bar link. Now, remove the lower strut clevis bolt and nut using an 18 millimeter and a 14 millimeter triple square. Now remove the axle bolt using a 24 millimeter.
Make sure that axle is loose. Remove the three lower control arm ball joint bolts using a 16 millimeter deep socket, and then separate the ball joint from the controller. Use a mallet to tap a flat punch to spread the clips. Now, tap down on the knuckle to remove it from the strut. Remove the top three strut mount holds using a 13 millimeter, and then you can just remove the strut assembly.
Install the new assembly, and then tighten those top three strut mount bolts. Insert the lower strut into the clevis. You may need to use a jack to raise the clevis up into the strut. Install the clevis bolts and nut, then tighten those. Then you can remove the jack and tighten the axle bolt. Now install the lower ball joint into the lower control arms and tighten those three nuts.
Let's bring the jack back here to support the lower control arm to insert the sway bar link and tighten the nut down. Install the brake hose bracket bolt and ABS sensor, and then install the wheel. Tighten those lug nuts, then raise the car with the jack, remove the jack stands, and lower the car until the wheel is just touching. Then torque those lug nuts to 88 foot-pounds. Repeat on the other side before you reinstall the wiper cowl. Once you've got the other strut replaced, install the wiper cowl, weatherstrip, and wiper arms. Then you're ready to move to the rear.
For the rear, raise the vehicle and remove the wheel using the same procedure as the front, just with the appropriate wheel and support points. Once the car is safely raised, you're going to want to use that jack to support the rear suspension, specifically the lower control arm. Now, remove the lower shock bolt using a 21 millimeter. Remove the top two shock mount bolts using a 16 millimeter. Disassemble the shock mount with the appropriate tools. Install a shock mount onto the new shock. Install a shock assembly in the vehicle and tighten the upper top two bolts. Now install the lower shock bolt, and you can remove the jack.
Go ahead and install that wheel and tighten the lug nuts. Then raise the car with the jack, remove the jack stand, lower the car until the wheel is just touching, and torque those lug nuts to 88 foot-pounds. Repeat this on the other side and you're done. We recommend going for a test drive, getting an alignment check, and enjoying your new suspension.
Get in the zone, AutoZone.