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Discussion Starter #1
I'll be doing front right strut replacement this weekend. I'd like to ask a few questions about the procedure and any other insights from you all before I begin.

This strut started to deflate at a rate of 100% in 1 hour, all started after I replaced my rotors and pads on all 4 corners. I didn't do anything special, just jacked up each corner at a time and not particularly high, only about 1" of clearance for each of the wheels. When all was done, then I noticed the deflation. After car is turned on or doors open/close, it re-inflates from the tank smoothly and stays there for the duration of the ride. The height is correct then.

I bought Bilstein front shocks from RockAuto for a pretty good price of $350 each (I bought 2). Bought Mann filter to replace as well. I printed out all the related material from WIS to complete this work, including the torque values and angles and the order of disassembly. There is one bolt, the one where lower control arm and strut meet in a bushing, it has a 265Nm torque spec. I am very scared of that value. A) will I be able to unfasten it with my electric impact, B) when putting back, will I be able to reach that torque with a 24" torque wrench? I will be working solo, there is no one to hold the bolt head as I work on the nut (it may spin). Will there be enough clearance between the floor and the rotor that's in the way? Once I lower the arm on a jackstand to preload the bushing, there will be less space to work.

Oh, and I didn't test anything yet :) Could be a leak elsewhere. I just assumed this is a strut problem.
 

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That indeed is an indication of a leak. Have you done a leak check with soapy water to determine where it is leaking?


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Discussion Starter #6
This is the way some GL's are assembled at the factory - filter backwards. All the YouTube vid's I've watched it's been the case.

I will follow suit.
 

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These are pointers I can think of after I did replaced front struts and rear springs -
1.It's definitely a good idea to install a new compressor filter. You risk ruining your compressor and valve block if you don't.
2. You need a lift and a helping hand (at least to remove the struts and to reinstall them) to successfully install the front struts.
I'm not sure that Jack stands will work. I have Bendpak Quick Jacks -$999 for the pair.
3. You need a ball joint separator ($17 on Amazon). You will hate and curse yourself and your car if you don't have it.
4. You will surely save a load by doing it yourself and it is simple enough to DIY.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Just updating this thread with my latest - I could not unfasten the sway bar link nut. I gave it all I got - a freshly bought 1200ftlb battery powered impact wrench, and even 1:4 torque multiplier I borrowed from a friend. Fail!

Then I drove the car over to my Indy and begged for them to install my part. They quoted 4 hours of labor.

So what did I do wrong, why is $400 impact wrench not loosening a 21mm nut? I checked to make sure the join bolt itself wasn’t spinning - it was not. Hmmmm?
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Ahh. I had no clearance between the floor and car to swing anything of respectable length.

I still have the left side to do in the future. So that I have the right tool next time, what kind impact wrench is suitable for suspension and axle work? And what kind of couplers, extensions, ujoins are acceptable?
 

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You need a proper lift that can give you at least 21 inch clearance from the ground or you won't be able to do it.

If I may ask, how much is your mechanic charging you per hour?
 

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You see, there's a lot of other work that you can do on this car by yourself and save a load of money. Beginning with a simple oil change, there are also, front and rear differential fluid changes, transfer case oil change, transmission oil change, spark plugs, brakes and in this case a strut change. These things are not complicated at all for a DIYer. But you need the proper tools or you will get half way and be frustrated. But you do need the proper tools though.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
This shop I go to charges $125/hr, which sounds close to what the dealer charges.

I am in the process of finding a “mechanic” that will fill in the gaps between full service shop and home garage.

Speaking of, my garage ceiling is not high enough to lift the GL by 2’, which is too bad. A lift in a house would make a very nice addition :)
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Yes. Labor alone for 1 strut and they “let” me supply the part (this time and last time).

I was willing to buy the right tools to diy it.... it if didn’t entail buying a full lift, that is :)
 

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That translates to $1000 in labor costs for the 2 front struts. If you could do it correctly by yourself, you can save that money and more. The lift costs $999 and you would use it again. Just to change the rear differential fluid is $100, front differential fluid$100 and the transfer case fluid another $100. You need to be able to lift the car off the ground to do those - just 2 screws each and you are done.
Something to think about. Look into it. It's called Quick Jacks and they are made by Bendpak ( I don't even work for them). I use them in my garage. You would have been able to unscrew that nut and install the front struts if you could lift the entire car off the ground so you could use a breaker bar.
 
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