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I changed the bushes on the front wishbones today. They were quite badly worn and causing uneven tyre wear. The car could be felt to wobble a bit when braking. I have done this guide to help some people out who might be doing this job. Hope it helps.

The tools you will need are:

1. 19mm socket and breaker bar

2. 8mm spanner

3. 13mm socket/ ratchet

4. 18mm spanner/socket

5. 15mm spanner/socket

6. 21mm spanner/ 7/8 AF spanner

7. Ball joint splitter

8. Hydraulic press

9. Torque wrench

10. Hacksaw

WARNING DO NOT ATTEMPT THIS JOB IF YOU ARE IN ANY DOUBT TO YOUR OWN ABILLITY NTO DO THIS JOB SAFELY

Prerequisites:

Use the 19mm socket and breaker bar and slacken the front wheels on the ground. Place chalking blocks at the rear wheels and put the handbrake on. Jack the car up and place securely on a set of axle stands, then remove the front wheel. Put the stands under the car where you will still be able to remove the suspension arms. Remove the plastic under tray from below the car.

Use the 21mm/ 7/8 spanner and remove the locking nut from the ball joint as shown in FIG 1

Then use the ball joint splitter and separate the ball joint from the hub as shown in FIG 2

Automotive tire Motor vehicle Bumper Automotive exterior Rim
Automotive tire Motor vehicle Tire Vehicle brake Wood


Remove the 8mm bolt that secures the headlamp adjustment switch to the suspension arm as shown in FIG 3
Remove the two 13mm bolts that hold the power steering pipes in place. This will give you more room to get the front wish bone bush securing bolt out.
As shown in FIG 4

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Automotive tire Automotive design Motor vehicle Gas Rim


Remove the 18mm bolt that secures the front of the suspension arm in place as shown in FIG 5
Then remove the two 15mm bolts that secure the rear of the arm in place as shown in FIG 6. When this is done you will be able to pull the arm free from the sub frame.

Automotive tire Human body Bicycle part Motor vehicle Wood
Automotive fuel system Automotive tire Vehicle brake Motor vehicle Automotive design


The original bushes on the rear of the suspension arm are oil filled. My bushes were so badly worn that the oil had leaked out some time ago. If there is oil still in there you can drill a hole in the bush to let it escape. Or you can just press the inner part of the bush out and the oil will escape anyway. Set the arm up in the press so that the bracket is supported and press the centre part of the bush out as shown in FIG 7 ( I used a old socket as a drift)

When this is removed you will be left with the Bracket with rubber and an alloy insert in it. Use the blow torch and burn the rubber from the bracket. I actually used the burner on the side of my old BBQ to burn the rubber out. Use the blow torch and burn the rubber from the front bush as well. When the front bush is burnt the steel insert inside the bush will just fall out. The bushes can be seen burning in FIG 8

Automotive tire Red Cylinder Gas Auto part
Fire Flame Charcoal Ash Cuisine


When the rubber is burnt out the next thing you need to do is remove the alloy insert from the rear bracket. Set it up in the press and press the insert out As shown in FIG 9/10 Note that the bush can only be pressed out one way as one end of the bracket has a shoulder on it so be sure that you have got it the right way round.

Tire Automotive tire Cylinder Line Gas
Automotive lighting Automotive tire Motor vehicle Bumper Red


When it is out clean the bracket with some sandpaper to help the new bush go in easer. A picture of the insert when it is removed can be seen in FIG 11
The next thing you need to do is remove the steel outer sleeve from the rear of the arm. Cut it lengthways if you can't set it up on the press. This will loosen its grip on the shaft and you will then be able to remove it without to much trouble. A picture of this can be seen in FIG 12

Drinkware Automotive tire Collar Red Material property
Automotive tire Bumper Red Automotive exterior Material property


When this is done you are ready to fit the new bushes. Lubricate the new bush with some fairy liquid at the chamfered end of the bush. As shown in Fig 13
Set the new bush up in the open end of the bracket and press the new bush in. Take your time and make sure that it is lined up straight. As the pressure is applied the bush will compress and then it will start to go in, (as shown in FIG 14) because you have cleaned, and lubricated it, it should go in without to much trouble.

Water Liquid Drinkware Blue Purple
Automotive tire Bumper Red Automotive exterior Gas


Press it in until the chamfered end of the bush pops out of the other end and then press the bracket onto the suspension arm shown in FIG 15
The hard work is now over. When you have done this you then need to press the new bushes into the front of the arm. The front bushes come in two half's so you just need to insert them in as shown in FIG16

Bicycle part Gas Auto part Paint Nut
Automotive tire Tire Bicycle part Bumper Rim


When the bushes are in press the new steel insert into them as shown in FIG 17

Refit the suspension arm to the car and insert all the bolts before you tighten any of them up. When all the bolts are entered torque them as follows.

The front 18mm bolt = 175 NM. The two 15mm rear bolts = 115NM
Ball joint bolt = 70NM
8mm Headlamp adjuster = 8NM
If you have trouble tightening the ball joint nut then use the trolley jack to put pressure on it as shown in FIG 18

Tire Automotive tire Motor vehicle Bumper Wheel
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The new bushes have made a big difference to the car. I'm pleased with how the car now handles and I hope this has helped you.
 

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just thought id add that i done my front bushes tonight, burnt the old ones ready to press them in at work tomorrow, but i managed to actually push them in 3/4 the way by hand then use a large g-clamp type clamp to push them in the rest of the way, was unbelievably easy so worth anyone doing the fronts if you already have the rear lower arm bushes done


thanks for the help
 

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Great instructions but too late for me.

I am not in anyway a competant mechanic but i managed to replace the full arms instead very easliy myself. I actually couldnt believe i had done them maself


I may replace wi poly bushes at later stage and these instructions may come in handy
 

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Nice write-up. Do you need a press to replace the rear bush? I was planning to buy replacement OE parts online but not sure if I need to press them onto the wishbone of if they can be easily pushed on.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Nice write-up. Do you need a press to replace the rear bush? I was planning to buy replacement OE parts online but not sure if I need to press them onto the wishbone of if they can be easily pushed on.
Best to use a press. There's a bit of force required to get it started but once it has it goes on without too much trouble.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Great write up.


How long should this take to do?

Also if i was to do the complete front set inc wishbone and ARB how long should that take?
It took me a few hours but give yourself plenty of time and then go at a pace that you are happy with. Think it was 3Hrs in total.
 

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This is a great 'How to'. When it comes to pressing the rear bush onto the wishbone, how did you manage to support the arm in the press?.
I am concerned about bending the arm.
Thanks.
 

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I have just finished fitting my set of powerflex bushes to the lower suspension arm. It took FOUR DAYS.

Perhaps my little borrowed blow torch was not powerful enough or perhaps my car had been fitted with flame proof rubber?! Luckily a mate has access to a workshop - it took a 10 tonne press to drive out/off the old bushes!!! I also ended up replacing the drop links and ball joints on the lower arms as these were pretty worn, fitted the powerflex front ARB bushes and a new oil filter housing to sort out the whistling noises.

Big thanks to the OP for the guide - despite all my troubles it did help!!
 
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