How To Replace Shocks & Struts on a 2004-2013 Mazda 3
This video shows how to complete a suspension job on a 2009 Mazda 3. We'll install shocks in the rear, but in the front we'll install these Duralast loaded strut assemblies for a faster install and better ride control. You can do this job at home with hand tools. These are the tools you'll need for the job. Bigger tools like the torque wrench, you can borrow from Auto Zone through the Loan-a-Tool Program. You'll also need a good hydraulic jack, some jack stands and 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.
Let's start by breaking the lug nuts loose. Jack up the vehicle from a secure point and place it on jack stands. Remove the lug nuts and the wheel. Disconnect the ABS sensor. Remove the brake hose clip and remove the hose from the strut assembly. Remove the sway bar link nut and ABS bracket using a 14 millimeter wrench and a five millimeter hex. Use a jack to support the lower knuckle and raise it to remove the sway bar link and remove the jack.
Remove the strut clevis bolt using a 17 millimeter. Tap down on the knuckle to separate the strut from a mounting point and pull the lower half of the strut out. Remove the top three strut mount bolts using a 14 millimeter and remove the strut assembly. Install the new strut assembly and tighten the top three bolts.
Make sure to clean and grease the clevis before inserting the strut. Install the strut into the knuckle. Use the jack to raise the clevis into the strut, but make sure the strut is aligned on the back side. You may have to tap it in with a mallet to seat it properly. Tighten the clevis bolt. Install the sway bar link to the strut, and the ABS mounting bracket, and then tighten the nut.
Install the brake hose into the strut mount and install the clip. Reconnect the ABS sensor. Install the wheel. Tighten the lug nuts, then jack up the car. Remove the jack and lower the car until the wheel is just touching. Torque the lug nuts to 73 foot pound. Repeat on the other side, and 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. Remove the lower shock mount bolt using 17 millimeter. Now remove the top two shock mount nuts using a 12 millimeter deep socket. You'll need to compress and then remove the old shock. Remove the top shock mount assembly using an adjustable wrench and a 13 millimeter. Then install this on the new shock. Install the new shock. Install the top two nuts and tighten. Install the bottom bolt and tighten. Install the wheel following the same procedure as the front. Repeat on the other side, and you're done. We recommend going for a test drive, getting an alignment check, and enjoying your new suspension.