How To: Replace Rear Shock Absorbers

How To: Replace Rear Shock Absorbers


Hey everybody—Dani here from O’Reilly
Auto Parts to show you how to change rear shock absorbers. Before I get into that, I
want to give you the opportunity to subscribe to our channel, if you haven’t already,
so you don’t miss out on any of our new content. Today, I’ll be changing the rear shocks
on this 2008 Hyundai Santa Fe, but procedures will vary slightly from one vehicle to the
next, so be sure to know the specifics for your vehicle before getting started. If you’re
not completely comfortable doing this yourself, we’d be happy to recommend a professional
technician in your area. Once you’ve got your supplies together,
here’s what you’ll do: Jack up your vehicle and put it on stands.
Start by removing the rear wheel where you’ll be working.
Then, place a jack under the lower ball joint or control arm.
Raise the jack upward slightly to relieve the tension of the suspension.
The shock absorber will be connected to the top shock mount by a bolt, and by a nut at
the bottom shock mount on the suspension knuckle. There will also be a third bolt for the splash
guard that bolts directly into the absorber. Use penetrating oil if needed to loosen the
bolts and nut. Use your socket wrench and 10mm socket to remove the splash guard
bolt… and splash guard. Then, remove the bottom nut using your 19mm
socket. Next, remove the top bolt with your 24mm socket.
You should be able to remove the shock absorber now.
Start at the top by pulling it away from the shock mount.
Then, push it away from the bottom shock mount. If you have trouble you may need to use a
pry bar and mallet to loosen the shock. Before installing a new shock absorber it
is recommended to manually pump them 3 to 5 times.
When you do that, make sure the shock is oriented the way it will be in the vehicle, top side
up. This primes the shock and reduces the break-in
period by getting the hydraulic fluid and nitrogen gas redistributed correctly, since
the shock has likely been sitting horizontally on a shelf and during shipment.
If the shock is packaged with a band on it, you may want to wait until it’s in place
to cut the band. Once it’s cut, the shock will extend fully. To install the new shock absorber, first make
sure it’s in the proper orientation so the splash guard at the base of the shock can
be reinstalled correctly. Connect the shock to the bottom shock mount.
Then, compress the shock and work it into the top shock mount.
Reinstall and finger-tighten the top bolt… and the bottom nut.
Don’t torque these till the wheel is replaced and the vehicle is lowered so that the suspension
is loaded. Torque the bolts and the nut to manufacturers specifications. Use the third bolt to reinstall the splash
guard. Replace the wheel and tighten the lug nuts
to manufacturer specifications. As always, be sure all bolts are tightened
to manufacturer specifications. Shocks should be replaced in pairs, so repeat
these steps on the other side. And that’s it. You’ll find everything
you need for this and other jobs at your local O’Reilly Auto Parts store or OReillyAuto.com. Our DIY videos are designed to help answer
questions we get in our stores every day. If you found this one helpful, subscribe to
our channel to get all the latest. We’ll see you again soon.

About the Author: Michael Flood

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