How To: Change Front Sway Bar Bushings w/ DR
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Thread: How To: Change Front Sway Bar Bushings w/ DR

  1. #1
    FRESHMAN ROVER
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    November 6th, 2010
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    How To: Change Front Sway Bar Bushings w/ DR

    I did my front sway bar bushing this weekend. The job is fairly straightforward, but very tedious. It probably took me 4-5 hours over two days, but I could do it again in 2-3. I'd rate this more like a changing a clutch level of skillset required, rather than a changing brake rotors level of job.

    What you'll need:
    • jackstands
    • jack
    • 21mm socket (lug nuts)
    • T-50 Torx socket (sway bar links)
    • 21mm box wrench or 13/16ths box wrench (sway bar links)
    • 24mm socket (front diff mount)
    • 15mm low profile socket
    • 15mm ratcheting wrench, straight
    • 15mm box wrench, tilted
    • 17mm box wrench to double wrench
    • small pry bars
    • zip ties
    How to do it:
    • break lug nuts
    • lift truck
    • remove wheels
    • remove undershield
    • with the t-50 and 13/16th box wrench, remove the sway bar end links - note that 13/16th is 20.6mm, and actually fits better/tighter than a 21mm - most tool sets only have up to 19mm wrenches, hence using a 13/16th.
    • put your jack on the bottom of the diff
    • with the 24mm socket and a few extensions, remove the diff mount from the driver's wheel well
    • jack the diff up until the driveshaft hits the bottom of the tranny
    • from the driver's wheel well, break the front 2 bolts of the drivers sway bar bracket off with a 15mm box wrench double wrenched with the 17mm wrench
    • (this step took me an hour) the rear bolt is a *****. there is not enough room between the driveshaft and the bolt to get a socket on. You have to use a FLAT wrench, and put it over the top of the bracket toward the front of the car (you can feel a groove in the bracket where the wrench fits). There is only room for one wrench, and you have to use every ounce of strength to break it (85ftlbs). Once it's broken, it come out easily with a ratcheting wrench.
    • Now you can wiggle the bracket off toward the center of the sway bar
    • remove the bushing, do not replace yet
    • on the passenger side, the bolts are easy to get off
    • Start with the rear two, you can easily get to them with a 15mm shallow socket and a flexible/jointed ratchet
    • After you have the rear two bolts off, rotate the sway bar as far as you can up in the wheel well and zip tie it.
    • that gives you room to get to the front bolt on the pass side (as otherwise there are hydraulic lines in the way)
    • (this step took me an hour) I could not find any way to get the pass side clamp off the bushing, as there are hydraulic lines in the way that go to the center coupler for the DR unit. I had to finally pry the lines up about 1/2" and permanently bend them out of the way to get the bracket off. This was a big PITA.
    • After that, it's easy to get the old bushing out
    • Clean both sides of the bar and both brackets
    • put the new sway bar bushings in (NOTE - dealer tech said they go in dry, so I put mine in w/o lube)
    • put the clamps back in place
    • Take a box cutter and clean the threads of all 6 clamp bolts before you put em back in, mine were full of grit that will strip out the threads in the frame (the LR tech warned me about this)
    • put all 6 bolts back in the same way they came out, fairly straightforward - torque to 85 flbs
    • put the end links back on the sway bar and gorilla tighten em (128fltbs) - make sure you have the washer between the bar and link
    • drop the diff back down and put the 3 bolts back in -torque to 77ftlbs
    • put the plate back on
    • put the wheels back on
    • test drive
    2006 Range Rover Sport Supercharged - DD, Tow, Snow, and Show
    2011 Ariel Atom - track toy
    1983 F-250 - Ranch truck
    1999 Range Rover (sold)

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  3. #2
    FORUM ADMINISTRATOR gooseyloosey's Avatar
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    NJ
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    Re: How To: Change Front Sway Bar Bushings w/ DR

    Great write up--thanks!

    That DR sounds like a real "payne" in the **** . If this is 3/5 wrenches, the non-DR is 2.5?
    '08 RRS HSE Stornoway Gray

    Space isn't remote at all. It's only an hour's drive away if your car could go straight upwards.

  4. #3
    FRESHMAN ROVER
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    November 6th, 2010
    Location
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    Re: How To: Change Front Sway Bar Bushings w/ DR

    Quote Originally Posted by gooseyloosey View Post
    Great write up--thanks!

    That DR sounds like a real "payne" in the **** . If this is 3/5 wrenches, the non-DR is 2.5?
    Non DR would probably be 2.5. One of the two trouble spots would go away (clearance on the DR hydraulic lines), but the issue between the rear left bolt and the driveshaft would still be there.

    If I had to do it over again, I might just pull the 6 or so torx bolts at the center diff and move the driveshaft out of the way. You'll need inverted torx for that though.

    Jason
    2006 Range Rover Sport Supercharged - DD, Tow, Snow, and Show
    2011 Ariel Atom - track toy
    1983 F-250 - Ranch truck
    1999 Range Rover (sold)

  5. #4
    FRESHMAN ROVER
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    Re: How To: Change Front Sway Bar Bushings w/ DR

    Actually, non-DR has a completely different bushing clamp. Make that a 1.5/5 for a non-DR car, easy as swapping brake rotors. I'll add the directions to the first post for both.

    Jason
    2006 Range Rover Sport Supercharged - DD, Tow, Snow, and Show
    2011 Ariel Atom - track toy
    1983 F-250 - Ranch truck
    1999 Range Rover (sold)

  6. #5
    FRESHMAN ROVER
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    Re: How To: Change Front Sway Bar Bushings w/ DR

    Er the PDFs for the jobs are more than the 16kb attachment size allowed. I'm happy to email em to a mod to add to my first post if ya like.

    I found the PDFs here on this site so you should be able to find them, no problem.

    Jason
    2006 Range Rover Sport Supercharged - DD, Tow, Snow, and Show
    2011 Ariel Atom - track toy
    1983 F-250 - Ranch truck
    1999 Range Rover (sold)

  7. #6
    NEWBIE
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    August 21st, 2012
    Location
    Cleveland, OH
    Posts
    1

    Re: How To: Change Front Sway Bar Bushings w/ DR

    Just some comments as I did this repair over the weekend...

    The flexible/tilting head ratchet was essential. It's even better if you have one of the higher tooth count ratchets so you don't have to move it as far to get a click as there's a few spots where space is tough.

    I didn't have as much trouble with the hydraulic lines on the passenger side. My bracket flipped backwards towards the rear of the car and I was able to swap the bushing pretty easily.

    The rear bolt on the driver's side is indeed the worst part of the day. Mine wasn't breaking with the wrench. The tool that actually made it pretty easy to remove, and I must admit the tool was actually useful despite first impressions, was one of the dogbone 8-in-1 wrenches from Sears. The head was compact enough so it didn't hit the driveshaft like a ratchet/socket would and it allows the handle to tilt so you can get enough grunt on it to break it loose.

    Thanks for the write up!

  8. #7
    FRESHMAN ROVER
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    canada
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    Re: How To: Change Front Sway Bar Bushings w/ DR

    Thanks for the accurate write up. Just did mine. Definitely up there a bit in the difficulty rating.
    Last edited by RRToadHall; February 19th, 2014 at 06:16 PM.
    2009 RRS S/C

  9. #8
    FRESHMAN ROVER C4attheDoor's Avatar
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    Re: How To: Change Front Sway Bar Bushings w/ DR

    This is great, I wish there were some pictures of this project on the internet somewhere but I can't find them.

    I planned on doing this, my car's symptoms are a clunking when I get to the bottom of a hill and turn right/left (pushing the front suspension pretty hard). Also when I hit some bumps going 20-40mph, the suspension is pretty clunky. If this sounds like something else LET ME KNOW PLEASE!
    Last edited by RRToadHall; February 19th, 2014 at 06:17 PM.
    '06 RRS HSE Zermatt Silver

    "The problem with internet quotes is that you cant always depend on their accuracy" - Abraham Lincoln, 1864

  10. #9
    FRESHMAN ROVER
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    Re: How To: Change Front Sway Bar Bushings w/ DR

    IMO, this is definitely an extreme plus to do on this vehicle. After the first drive it was amazing. Rode like brand new truck. I purchased the car used with 100,000 kms on it and thought the thumping and rough ride was the thin 20" tires. Not so. It is nice and tight and quiet now and I suppose this is how it felt brand new.
    One thing that I did was drop the short cross member under the driver's side bushing. This gave a bit more wiggle room which is in very short supply in there.
    IMO, this is not a job for a layman. It is fairly tough because of the tight space and necessity of a fairly robust set of tools.(Also , probably a warning of co**** language)
    Unfortunately I did not take any pictures, but the "How To" seems to cover everything.
    2009 RRS S/C

  11. #10
    FRESHMAN ROVER C4attheDoor's Avatar
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    Re: How To: Change Front Sway Bar Bushings w/ DR

    Unfortunately the only way to learn these things is to do it. I have the tools so I guess I'll give it a go. I definitely want to get the like-new feeling back of the suspension.

    I've done rotors and air suspension compressor replacement, this seems like a step up in difficulty.

    This is the part correct?
    http://www.roverparts.com/Parts/RVU500011.cfm
    '06 RRS HSE Zermatt Silver

    "The problem with internet quotes is that you cant always depend on their accuracy" - Abraham Lincoln, 1864

  12. #11
    FRESHMAN ROVER
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    Re: How To: Change Front Sway Bar Bushings w/ DR

    The major difficulty is the close/tight space to work in. It is pretty obvious when you are in there what needs to be done.
    I see you have the HSE. Might be different then mine which is the S/C.
    2009 RRS S/C

  13. #12
    FRESHMAN ROVER C4attheDoor's Avatar
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    Re: How To: Change Front Sway Bar Bushings w/ DR

    Tight spaces are definitely a pain. I need to figure it out because I plan on doing it when it happens again, which i'm sure it will since these are rubber =\\\\.
    '06 RRS HSE Zermatt Silver

    "The problem with internet quotes is that you cant always depend on their accuracy" - Abraham Lincoln, 1864

  14. #13
    FRESHMAN ROVER
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    Re: How To: Change Front Sway Bar Bushings w/ DR

    Plan on doing this over the weekend if the weather cooperates. I'm a little intimidated by the step referenced below. I would hate to damage the hydraulic lines. Is there another way around removing the clamp without bending the lines?
    • (this step took me an hour) I could not find any way to get the pass side clamp off the bushing, as there are hydraulic lines in the way that go to the center coupler for the DR unit. I had to finally pry the lines up about 1/2" and permanently bend them out of the way to get the bracket off. This was a big PITA.

  15. #14
    FRESHMAN ROVER
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    Re: How To: Change Front Sway Bar Bushings w/ DR

    I changed mine a few months back after reading the how to. Tight working space ETC. , but doable without any destruction.
    2009 RRS S/C

  16. #15
    FRESHMAN ROVER
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    Re: How To: Change Front Sway Bar Bushings w/ DR

    Finally got around to trying this over the weekend. I could not get one of the bushing bolts off so I had no choice but to put her back together and drive in the dealership. The dealer attempted the install and they broke the bolt head off so they spent the day drilling it out. Got her back today ($406.00 in labor) and she drives as good as new.

    Lesson learned: if the bolt won't budge, don't force it. Take it in for service.

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