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Learn how to replace control arms and bushings to fix a car with a bouncy suspension. I show you how to figure out what is causing the bounce (shocks or bushings) and then I show you how to replace the upper and lower trailing arms and install new poly bushings. Then we take the DriftStang to the track and test her out!
How to Replace Struts:
How to Replace Shocks:
How to Install Coilovers:
Tools and Products I used:
Upper and Lower Trailing Arms:
Torque Wrench:
Extendable Ratchet:
Rubber Mallet:
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Hey guys chris fix here and today, i'm going to show you how to fix a car that has a bouncy suspension, this car bounces all over the road. It's unsettled and it's just not safe anymore. I don't want to become another mustang statistic, so i'm going to show you one how to diagnose the problem figure out where the problem's coming from and then two how to fix that problem. So your car doesn't bounce around on the road anymore.

It has a nice settled, comfortable, controllable ride right now. This thing is unpredictable. It's not good on the road, it's not good on the track, and we need to fix that and you want to know what let me show you how bouncy this ride is alright. So i found the perfect road to show you the bounce and look at this.

Every bump we hit it's like bouncing on a trampoline. You get the initial bounce which is normal, but then it keeps bouncing and never settles down and if you think it's bad on the street, it's even worse on the track check this out and slow mo now. Look at the front driver's side tire coming off the ground, because the body of the car is bouncing around that makes controlling this car really difficult as if it wasn't difficult enough when you're learning to drift and coming up to this turn just watch the body of The car it's just bouncing around everywhere and because the suspension's so messed up when you transfer the weight, the mustang becomes a mustang and it wants to spin out so this needs to get fixed and i can tell the problems coming from the rear of the car. So, let's safely jack up the rear, all right - and the last thing i like to do - is come over to the car and give it a good shake shake it real good, make sure it doesn't budge, and that is solid as a rock.

You want to make sure that you don't have to worry about the car moving or tipping or anything while you're under it should be solid, and that is now another thing i want to show you guys is redundancy, so you can see. I have a jack. I have a pair of jack stands. I have a second pair of jack stands.

I have a pair of wheels all that under the car. So if one thing fails, i have a backup that way. You don't have to worry about the car falling on you. It's very important: you want to be extra safe and you want to make sure that you're good to go when you're working under a car very important.

So with that all set up, let's go over the two main causes of a bouncy ride and the first main cause is your shocks are bad, so every car has shocks and springs, sometimes they're together like this in a strut format, you can see the spring here. The shock in there, but no matter what you have a shock and spring on each corner of your car. Now these two work together the spring, absorbs all the impacts, so any unevenness in the road any potholes any bumps any waves. That spring is going to absorb that, so you don't feel those jolts while you're driving and then in the setup.

You see right here. There is a shock inside the spring and what that shock does it's a damper? It prevents the spring from bouncing around uncontrollably. So the shock and spring work together, so that gives you that smooth ride without the shock your spring is just going to bounce everywhere and you're going to have a really bouncy ride, so check your shocks if you have a bouncy ride now, in this case, the Shocks in my mustang are good. I installed performance coilovers on this car because i drift it so both the spring and the shock on all four corners are working perfect, but with that said, i always like to give you guys examples of when things are bad.

So we're going to go over to my truck here and i'm going to show you what it looks like when you have a bad shock all right. So first, let me show you how good shocks should behave. You can see, i'm bouncing the truck and when i stop the suspension settles down quickly and since these shocks are good, we're going to simulate bad shocks by disconnecting them, which is super simple, just unscrew the nut, pull the bolt out and remove the shock from the Mount now check out the difference. First off the suspension is way more springy and then, when you stop jumping it just keeps bouncing.

This is such a perfect example of a bad shock. Look at how much this truck bounces, and so you can see the difference. Here's a side by side with me jumping up and down four times with the bad shock on top and the good shock on the bottom holy smokes. What a difference and that example was perfect to show you how important shocks are to keep a level balanced ride to prevent it from bouncing around.

So, if you feel in that balance, there's a good chance, your shocks are bad. Now, how can you tell visually if you're, just looking at the shocks, one thing to look for is oil, so if your shocks are leaking oil, like you, can see right here, how there's oil stains on this? This is all oiled up here and there's some oil on here. You can see some oil there. That means that the shock is bad and needs to be replaced and never just replace one shock, always replace them in pairs, even if only one is oiled replace the other one as well.

It keeps the suspension balanced and usually the other one is on its way out when the first one goes so always replace some pairs now. The second thing to look at with shocks is for rust. If you see rust, that's on the surface, that's not a big deal. It's the northeast! It's going to happen, but if you see bad rust that really digs into the metal and eats away at the metal like that, then you know it's time to replace your shocks again.

Inexpensive easy to do. I have a video on it, i'll link it in the description, and this is one of the main reasons why your car might have a bounce to it. Now, in this case, my shocks are good. So, what's the second reason? Well, the second reason for a bouncy suspension is bad bushings, so these bushings are almost like a shock in an unconventional sense.

They are a piece of rubber, it's an insulator that helps absorb impact from the suspension. So what happens is over time bushings go bad, they break and you start getting that wear and tear here's. A perfect example of that. Here's, some new bushings, here's, some old bushings.

If we have a bolt - let's just say this - is a control arm bolt that goes through this bushing. You can see how much play there is in there. You're gon na feel that compared to this, which is a brand new bushing, there is no play at all. No movement, so that's gon na be nice and tight.

Now this is what is happening on my drift car. Let me show you have a really cool shot of this, so when i pop the car in reverse, like this, you could hear a clunk and let me show you the problem. Watch the upper trailing arm. Look at how much play there is in the trailing arm due to the worn out bushing that is real, bad, so out with the old rubber, rounded out, bushings and in with the brand new.

This is how we're gon na fix this bounce. Not only are they new bushings, but they are polyurethane bushings, which is a harder material than just plain rubber and we're using spherical, bushings so metal on metal bushings. It's almost like a ball joint, so there is going to be no play at all and then we're replacing the upper control, arms which are bed and the lower control arms which are on their way out to these boxed control arms and to these solid control, arms. So there's not going to be any flex and then we're getting a stiffer, solid, sway bar again preventing flex preventing movement.

This rear end is going to be solid. I can't wait to get all this installed and also these have polyurethane bushings in the front and the back. So all this is gon na go in, but the first thing we need to do is we need to remove the lower control arm and we can remove it as one unit. We can remove the whole lower control arm or the lower trailing arm with the sway bar attached on both sides, so that whole thing could come out.

So, let's head underneath the car and remove the old, worn out suspension, and so you have an idea where everything is located. Let's take a look right up here are the upper control arms. These are the ones that have the bad bushings they're, also known as upper trailing arms, and this is what's causing the bounce we're going to replace those last. The first thing we're going to replace is the sway bar down here which connects to the trailing arms.

So the lower trailing arms or the lower control arms. Here's the driver's side right here, we'll replace that then follow the sway bar and then here's the passenger side right here and we're going to replace that as well. Everything is pretty simple to do and it's all going to be done with common hand tools. Let me show you so here are all the tools that you're going to need we're using all common hand tools, so you can easily do this at home.

The first thing i like to do is get those safety glasses on and now all we have here is a ratchet with a couple of sockets, some wrenches, a screwdriver hammer, metal wire brush thread locker and a torque wrench. That's all you need to do this entire, install, it's real simple. So, let's get started first thing: we're going to do is remove the lower control arm, which is this right here, and this has two bolts holding it in. We have one at the frame up there, and then we have one at the axle back there once we remove those.

This will come out. There's also a bolt right here which holds in the e-brake cable, which is the first thing we need to remove so that we can remove the control arm. So let's break the bolt free and unscrew it all the way like that good and with this removed. Now we can set this aside and let's remove the bolt on the axle.

So with this, we need to put a wrench on the back to keep the nut in place and a socket on the front to loosen the bolt now, a lot of times with bolts like this, that go through control, arms or go through bushings. It's hard to remove them. They won't come out past a certain point. So a little trick get the opened end of a wrench and push it behind the bolt and get a ratcheting wrench.

And what we're gon na do is we're gon na force it out as we turn it and the bolt gets stuck because the axle is pressing on the bolt since it's loose and you're gon na see once we remove the bolt all the way. The axle moves back just like that all right, so with that lowered down now, let's go to the front and remove that last bolt, so we can remove the entire lower control arm. So let's get our wrench and ratchet and loosen it up all the way good. So, with the nut removed now we can lift the control arm up and wiggle it that way, we're able to pull the bolt out like that, and i also removed the bolts from the other side that way we can lower this down as one complete piece so Out with the old and in with the new now real quick, i wanted to show you the differences between the old trailing arm and the new trailing arm, because they're pretty important.

First of all, look at the difference here. This old trailing arm has a rubber bushing and it has gaps in here. So that allows a lot of play from side to side. This one is polyurethane and there are no gaps, so it is not only harder because polyurethane is harder and it moves less than rubber, but there's also no air gaps for it to move at all.

So this is a lot stiffer. The rod is going to be a lot stiffer, but i'm also going to feel the suspension more, which is going to help me control the car more then, if we come up over here, you could see look at this. This is an oval bushing. So not only is it rubber, not only are there holes in it, but it's oval, so this is gon na allow the control arm to go back and forth like that.

There's gon na be a ton of movement in here, not only that when the suspension is loaded up on one side, it's gon na fling the other way once the suspension becomes unloaded. So you're gon na have that spinning out effect. It's gon na be hard to control and you can actually see this when i drift check this out. I'm coming around the corner here, the suspension's super bouncy but, more importantly, i load up the weight on one side of the suspension and then, when i unload it to try to straighten out the car slingshots the other way and i almost spin out.

Luckily i had a lot of tracks that i was able to get straightened out. So, as you can see, the oval bushing is a major problem. It really slingshots the car when you have that weight transfer and that's not good. That's going to cause you to spin out it's going to make drifting really difficult and unpredictable, so the round polyurethane bushing in the brand new control arm is going to be way better.

We're not going to have that slingshot effect. It's just going to hold that suspension in place and then the last major good thing about the new control arm compared to the old one is you can see. This is stamped steel on the old control arm, so that's gon na allow it to flex and also load up and and kind of spring. But this one is boxed steel, it's welded and it's a lot more sturdy.

This isn't gon na flex and it's not gon na load up and and twist and then create a springing effect, so major difference between the old one and the new one. I can't wait to install this, so let's go get it installed, so let's lift the whole assembly into place and line it up, so it fits into the body mount. You might need to do a little bit of wiggling because it's a tight fit with the new poly bushing. Now we can get some medium strength thread locker on the threads, so the vibrations don't loosen it up, because this is a high vibration area, then we can slip the bolt into place and perfect and then we can get the nut on there and just keep it Hand tight for now so now, let's get the other end of the lower control arm bolted in.

But you can see this doesn't line up and that's because our axle shifted just a little bit, so we need to jack up the rear differential. So the axle is straight, and this will line up and we can put the bolt through and once we have this aligned now we can push it into place and again it's going to be a tight fit with the poly bushings, so use a rubber mallet to Lightly tap it in like that, then we can add some thread locker to the bolt slide, the bolt in and get the nut on the other end of the bolt all right, so you might be tempted to torque down those control arm bushings, but don't do that. Just yet, first, we need to jack up the suspension, so the weight of the car is on it. You never want to tighten down bushings without the weight of the car on it.

That's how you get them to tear so with the weight of the car on the suspension. Now we could torque the rear, lower control arm bolt to 50 foot pounds good, and i like to mark the bolt with a paint marker. So i could easily see if the bolt is coming loose. When i'm at the track, then we can torque down the front bolt to 50 foot pounds as well.

And finally, let's remove this bolt here then reinstall the e-brake holder and then we can put the bolt back add in a washer and a nut and tighten it down to 50 foot-pounds good, all right so with that tightened down. The last thing to do is add some fresh grease to the control arm bushings now these are pre-greased from the factory, but it's always a good idea to add fresh grease after the install to make sure they're ready to go. So just add a few pumps of grease to this rear bushing and a few pumps of grease to the front bushing and don't forget to put the dust caps back on. So the fitting stays nice and clean all right and that's all there is to installing rear, lower control, arms and a brand new stiffer sway bar.

I can't wait to try this out and see how it feels, but this isn't the main reason why we're under here remember: we had that bad bounce, which is caused by bad bushings in the upper control arms located right there. So, let's replace them so get a wrench on the bolt, and since it's tight back here, i'm using a ratcheting wrench on the nut to remove it so loosen the nut all the way good, and now we can remove the bolt and this one's a little bit. Tight so unscrew it a few times and beautiful. It comes right out now with one side removed.

Let's do the other, so unscrew the nut and remove it. Then we can remove the bolt and the upper trailing arm comes right out all right so out with the old and in with the new check out this difference. Look at that. So, first off, look at the old one.

The old one is completely shot. You can see right there, where the bushing has a gap in it, because it's all degraded, that's where we're getting all that play, that's able to move back and forth, especially under the weight of the car. This is also stamped steel compared to our brand new, solid steel. We have a spherical bushing here, it's completely metal, so it's going to be able to move around, but it's going to be solid, it's not going to budge and then, on the other side we have to install our brand new polyurethane bushing inside the differential housing.

So we have to press that old, bushing out and push this new bushing in, but this is gon na make a huge difference. I can't wait to get it installed, but the first thing we need to do is remove that old bushing. So let's go over to the car and do that now, since the gas tank is right here, i wan na try to avoid using an open flame to get this bushing to come out. So what we're gon na do first is remove the inner metal race of the bushing by tapping it out with a socket and a hammer good, and once that's out remove the socket - and this is what we just knocked out.

It's just a metal sleeve that the bolt goes through now, normally heating. This up would melt the rubber and allow us to hammer it out really easily, but since we can't do that, instead, i'm hammering the screwdriver in between the outside metal race and the inside rubber and then just pry it so the rubber separates from the race. And now we need to work our way around the entire bushing doing the same exact thing until we separate the rubber bushing from the metal race. Now, if we push this, this should come right out perfect, just like that.

So now we want to clean out all the extra rubber in here there's little pieces like a slight layer in here, so that we could fit our polyurethane bushing that actually is going to fit in very tightly, which is perfect and to clean it out. Let's use a file and make sure you work away around the entire race. You want to try to get this down to bare metal, or at least as close to bare metal as possible, and in this case the file's doing a pretty good job at removing the rubber there's a thin skin of rubber. But it's smooth and basically all the rubber is removed, and now we want to use the supplied, grease and work it into the race.

So it covers the whole area, and all this is is silicone grease, which is going to help us install the poly bushing, make it easier to push in, and it's also going to prevent the bushing from squeaking when you're driving around now, let's push the bushing in As far as we can get it and then lightly tap it the rest of the way in until it's flush against the race, like that and, let's make sure we add the back part of the bushing which just presses on like so and finally, let's add the New inner sleeve make sure you add silicone grease to this and cover it completely again. It makes it go in easily and also prevents squeaking. So now, let's push this in as far as we can get it and then we can lightly tap it in. So it's flush with the bushing just like that, all right, so with the old bushings out, these things were shot now, it's time to install our upper control arms and it's a good idea to add grease now, since we have easy access to them so pump them With grease until you can see the grease coming out of the middle and with these greased up now, all we need to do is make sure they're the same length as the stock control arm.

So all we need to do is lay them on top of each other and make sure it lines up that one is good and then we'll do the same thing with this one right here beautiful and these are all ready to go. If you need to, you can adjust the length of each of these arms, but in this case, they're good to go so let's get them installed. Now, when installing this, we want to make sure our grease fitting is facing down, so we can easily access it and grease it up in the future, and the open end here has to face the differential and the spherical bushing attaches to the body and we're going To install the spherical bushing first so get some medium strength thread locker on the bolt and let's get the upper trailing arm in position and slide the bolt through it to hold it in place same for the other bolt. Let's get some thread locker on it and then let's pull the trailing arm down over the new poly bushing and it's gon na be a little bit tight.

But that's a good thing. So just get it aligned and then we can push the bolt with the washer through it to hold it in place. Now we're going to jack up the axle to put the car's weight on the suspension, then we could torque down the bolt that goes into the differential bushing to 70 foot-pounds and torque down the other bolt to 70 foot-pounds as well good, all right and with that Torqued down, i also installed the trailing arm on the other side as well, so we are completely done. They're torqued down they're greased, up everything's bolted in uppers and lowers, and we have a brand new rear suspension.

I can't wait to try this out. It is gon na be amazing, so we're gon na try it out on the road and we're gon na see how it feels i'm gon na show you the suspension and then we're gon na go to the track and try it out there as well. But first we need to get the wheels on remember to torque them down in a star pattern. Then we can lower the car to the ground and let's start her up and go for a ride.

Now, just to remind you, here's the old upper trailing arm setup and that's crazy. Look at all that play now. Here's the new setup, i'm doing the same exact thing: revving it up the same popping it into reverse, but now there's basically no play. That is awesome.

So again, here's the old setup and look at how much that driveshaft and differential twists. That is definitely not good for those u-joints. It's gon na wear them out real fast, but here is our new suspension setup and look at that difference. There's barely any movement at all and those poly bushings are doing their job, so the new setup looks great, but the real question is: how does it handle on that bumpy road? I showed you at the beginning of the video.

Well, let's check it out. Acceleration feels real good now, no more bumps and we're coming up to that bumpy part of the road and what a difference you can still feel the bumps, but the car settles down and it doesn't bounce around. I don't feel like i'm gon na lose control, which is important and now that leaves us with one more question: how does she handle at the track? All right here we go first lap with the new suspension she's, accelerating real smooth, let's initiate into that first turn holy smokes. Does this feel like a different car? I have so much more control over this car.

I don't know why i waited so long to do this now. I don't have to think about bouncing around and letting off on the gas, because i'm afraid i'm going to spin out and i can just focus on my driving and you can just feel it all. The bounce is completely gone and anytime the weight transfers it transfers smoothly, no more slingshot effect, which makes me try to spin out. I don't feel any binding, there's no play, there's no bounce.

This suspension is finally set up to handle a supercharger, so there you go whether you have bad shocks or bad bushings. Now you know how to fix a car with a bouncy suspension. Hopefully the video was helpful if it was remember to give it a thumbs up. If you aren't a subscriber consider hitting that subscribe button for more videos, just like this and finally, all the tools and products i used in this video are linked in the description, so you can easily find them.

15 thoughts on “How to replace control arms and bushings to fix a bouncy suspension”
  1. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Hyungsuk Oh says:

    Your drift skill is good though 🙂 Thanks for the video again!

  2. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars DrMike gas pwred says:

    when is a new video coming out in waiting for a dyno with the upgradet throttle body

  3. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars vtk5 says:

    I recently had my car aligned and the shop that aligned it said that they couldn’t truly align the rear because a lot of my rear suspension components had rusted (most of the front is new). So when you did this, did you have to align the car after? I’m considering replacing some of my rear suspension (if I can figure out what needs replacing (do you have any advice?)) The car isn’t particularly bouncy but it makes a clunking noise when I go over bumps and it’s pretty clear on the alignment diagram that it’s out (even though the car drives straight). The car is a Subaru so AWD and I therefore want my tires to last as long as possible…
    I think the components that are rusted are whatever is associated with the shocks/struts (that’s what the shop said). I’m pretty new to this stuff but learning a lot from your wonderful videos!

  4. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars James A says:

    How did this setup last? Would it be good for a daily driver no track racing at all. Just bumps/highway driving and back road use.

  5. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars James A says:

    Loved the camera views of the shocks and bushings in action.

  6. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Time vs cars says:

    Hey Chris, I like your Mazda truck off-road wheels it looks cool and it matches the truck!

  7. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Silas Contreras says:

    Oh BTW you do a guud jub on your videos. All ways enjoy them and learn from them

  8. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Jonathan Kosyjana says:

    Was just having a discussion about lifting my grand marquis 3 inches. It's known to use f150 shocks in the rear but I wonder if these control arms you have could adjust to fit the new height. I need my car to be more snow-worthy for snowboard trips. I got snow tires last year but I'm still bottoming out some when there is a lot of snow

  9. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars webeducation says:

    What does it mean when the back of the car wobbles or like wiggle side-by-side? I've put Monroe shocks on the back so the bounce is a lot less. I can drive over speed bumps barely feeling it. But the side-to-side movement has me stumped. Any ideas?

  10. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Wa ge says:

    When you put it In reverse and we heard the car a little bit damn that was nice, it’s been a while since I’ve heard that exhaust

  11. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Park It says:

    Just ordered controls arms on my Dakota pretty sure the ones in it now don’t even have bushings left 😅 huge clunk

  12. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Julian Montes says:

    There’s a constant squealing noise in my car no squeaking jus constant whining noise and my steeering wheel pulls and it’s way more lose

  13. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Pineapple Island says:

    Hey Chris…I been following your videos. I replaced my rotors front suspension. When I put new hoses onto the new calipers, the old brake line broke. Then I pumped too much grease from a grease gun into my brand new passenger side upper A arm on my 96 Yukon. Is it use-able or now trash and blown? Need a video for snapping the old brake line, maybe a coupler and what to do if you overfill a ball joint with grease. Thanks man.

  14. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Vincent Iannelli says:

    ive learned so much from this channel ….this is my go to now ….thanks chris fix …did my own power steering fluid ….followed your vid …worked amazingly thanks so much!!!!!!

  15. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Hoserfishing says:

    Thanks for stressing safety in your videos Chris!
    Used to work with with a really good mechanic that was always flaunting safety. One day he had put jack stands in himself so I asked him why he was suddenly being safe.
    He said because his cousin had just died…suffocated under a car that fell on him.

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