Strut mount replacement question

dclark

Veteran Member
Joined
Nov 27, 2005
I have read the threads after a search, I have summarized the info as this (please tell me if I am on the right road here)

1) Remove top strut nut in the engine compartment
2) Jack up car, remove wheel
3) Lower the car with control arm or brake disc resting on a jack stand
4) Apply spring compressors, tighten a little
5) Jack up car
6) Remove nut above rubber mount, remove mount
Reverse above for install
Anything I am missing? I have never replaced a mount with strut in car, always have removed the damn strut and worked on it on the garage floor.
WHat is the size of the nut above the mount?
Car is a '03 Jetta wagon with koni reds.
 

P2B

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Jan 11, 2006
Location
Toronto & Muskoka, Canada
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2002 Jetta, 2003 Jetta, 2003 Jetta Wagon
You don't need spring compressors, just the jamb nut off an outer tie-rod.

Replace the shouldered nut that holds the strut bearing with the jamb nut - the weight of the car holds the spring while you do this. Then jack up the car and remove the rubber bump stop from the top of the strut, then lower it so the weight of the car is holding the spring again. Remove the jamb nut, replace the strut bearing, put the jamb nut back. Lift the car again to install the new rubber bump stop, then lower to replace the jamb nut with the shouldered nut.

Simon
 

jokila

Vendor
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Dec 3, 2004
Location
Houston, Texas
TDI
2003 Jetta GLS, Manual
You don't need spring compressors, just the jamb nut off an outer tie-rod.

Replace the shouldered nut that holds the strut bearing with the jamb nut - the weight of the car holds the spring while you do this. Then jack up the car and remove the rubber bump stop from the top of the strut, then lower it so the weight of the car is holding the spring again. Remove the jamb nut, replace the strut bearing, put the jamb nut back. Lift the car again to install the new rubber bump stop, then lower to replace the jamb nut with the shouldered nut.

Simon
Interesting. Can you explain in more detail? The videos and how to require the spring compressor.

What step goes first? thanks.
 

Seatman

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2014 Skoda rapid elegance 1.6 cr tdi
Undo the very top nut, remove it and the little plate, undo the next nut down then jack the car up till you can get the bush out and replace, lower car down to compress the spring again and replace the nuts.

I think that's the jist of it but I prefer the spring compressor option, find it a lot easier
 

jokila

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Location
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2003 Jetta GLS, Manual
Undo the very top nut, remove it and the little plate, undo the next nut down then jack the car up till you can get the bush out and replace, lower car down to compress the spring again and replace the nuts.

I think that's the jist of it but I prefer the spring compressor option, find it a lot easier

Ok. That's how I envisioned it. Thanks

I just didn't understand about the jamb nut from the tie rod method. I read somewhere on VW Vortex of something like that using a nut from a Passat that wasn't clear either.
 

Seatman

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2014 Skoda rapid elegance 1.6 cr tdi
Ah wait a minute, I got it wrong there. What he is saying is to take the top nut off then the one below that holds the bush on (jam nut), replace that one with a nut from a tie rod so the bush can slip over the top. That way you can keep the spring compressed while the car is jacked up. Doh!

Not heard of that method before but now it's clicked it does make sense.
 

P2B

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Jan 11, 2006
Location
Toronto & Muskoka, Canada
TDI
2002 Jetta, 2003 Jetta, 2003 Jetta Wagon
Ah wait a minute, I got it wrong there. What he is saying is to take the top nut off then the one below that holds the bush on (jam nut), replace that one with a nut from a tie rod so the bush can slip over the top. That way you can keep the spring compressed while the car is jacked up. Doh!
Exactly - much easier than mucking about with spring compressors inside the wheel wells, and safer too since there's no way for the spring to slip. You don't even need to remove the wheels, although access to remove and replace the rubber bushing is easier with them off.

Simon
 

jokila

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Location
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2003 Jetta GLS, Manual
Ok. I understand now. I need to replace the bearing too. I did the steps and see that the bearing is cracked. Seems to me I should be able to do the same steps and repeat for the bearing.

So after getting the bushing out, I can then put pressure back on the spring by letting the weight of the car back on to it. From there I could back off the nut, replace the bearing and then nut back on, lower strut, bushing back on, etc...
 

P2B

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Location
Toronto & Muskoka, Canada
TDI
2002 Jetta, 2003 Jetta, 2003 Jetta Wagon
So after getting the bushing out, I can then put pressure back on the spring by letting the weight of the car back on to it. From there I could back off the nut, replace the bearing and then nut back on, lower strut, bushing back on, etc...
Yes. I always replace both bearing and bushing using this method.

Simon
 

jokila

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2003 Jetta GLS, Manual
Good to know. One of the things that is different for me is the bottom nut does not have a shoulder. It came with the bilstein shocks. So it seems I can almost remove the bushing even without removing the nut. Is that even supposed to be that way? I was thinking of going to the dealer or somewhere to get a replacement nut.
 

CNGVW

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I use the old two piece spring compressors I use a cut off air grinder and make a small grove under the strut spring cup to let the spring compressor hook in. then pull both compressors down. I can change the bushing and bearing in minutes this way.

Bob Mann
 

Seatman

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2014 Skoda rapid elegance 1.6 cr tdi
Good to know. One of the things that is different for me is the bottom nut does not have a shoulder. It came with the bilstein shocks. So it seems I can almost remove the bushing even without removing the nut. Is that even supposed to be that way? I was thinking of going to the dealer or somewhere to get a replacement nut.

Did your bilsteins come with two nuts? Usually just come with a new top nut.
 

dclark

Veteran Member
Joined
Nov 27, 2005
I was working on the car and having a hard time finding a socket for that second nut.
I stared, frustrated , then noticed that the bolt holding the sway bar bracket was so loose that I say several threads. It turned easily with my fingers. I tightened down real good.
Looking at the mount from above, it looked real wedged in there. Could it be that the mount was good, the loose bolt was causing the banging sound?
I took it out for some errands. The suspension was perfectly quiet, not a sound or knock!
I feel stupid- thanks for the replies though!
 

Seatman

Top Post Dawg
Joined
Apr 23, 2010
Location
Scotland
TDI
2014 Skoda rapid elegance 1.6 cr tdi
I was working on the car and having a hard time finding a socket for that second nut.
I stared, frustrated , then noticed that the bolt holding the sway bar bracket was so loose that I say several threads. It turned easily with my fingers. I tightened down real good.
Looking at the mount from above, it looked real wedged in there. Could it be that the mount was good, the loose bolt was causing the banging sound?
I took it out for some errands. The suspension was perfectly quiet, not a sound or knock!
I feel stupid- thanks for the replies though!

Yes very likely, seen it before a couple of times, not sure why the nut wasn't fully tight but same issue, same symptoms.
 

jokila

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2003 Jetta GLS, Manual
Did your bilsteins come with two nuts? Usually just come with a new top nut.

I don't remember. It was 100k miles ago. If there were two I would have used them both. The nut is 22mm so i used for the bottom one. I still am using the original 21mm top nut. It actually has a slight shoulder. The bottom nut from bilstein has the integrated plastic locking part.
 

Seatman

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2014 Skoda rapid elegance 1.6 cr tdi
I don't remember. It was 100k miles ago. If there were two I would have used them both. The nut is 22mm so i used for the bottom one. I still am using the original 21mm top nut. It actually has a slight shoulder. The bottom nut from bilstein has the integrated plastic locking part.

Ah, the bottom one isn't a locker as standard, it's that fancy thing with the extra shoulder. I used the original top nut as I like to be able to use the 21mm spark plug socket because it has flats for a spanner then I can use the 7 mm allen key through the middle to hold the strut.
 

jokila

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2003 Jetta GLS, Manual
That was an easy method to replace the parts! The bearing was the culprit of the clunking I was experiencing. The bearing was a goner and had upchucked the ball bearings.
 
Last edited:

jokila

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Dec 3, 2004
Location
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2003 Jetta GLS, Manual
Did your bilsteins come with two nuts? Usually just come with a new top nut.
I think it came with just one, so since it was 22mm i thought it replaced the bottom nut of the same size. I guess it was for the top. No shoulder on it.

I am going to order the nut for both sides and replace them with the correct one.
 

Seatman

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Location
Scotland
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2014 Skoda rapid elegance 1.6 cr tdi
I think it came with just one, so since it was 22mm i thought it replaced the bottom nut of the same size. I guess it was for the top. No shoulder on it.

I am going to order the nut for both sides and replace them with the correct one.
Yeh I think the top one is the important one which is why it's a locker, so when you're doing your dukes of hazard the strut wont fall out :D
 

Dunno513

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Mirror Lake, NH
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2006 NB PD-TDI DSG
Exactly - much easier than mucking about with spring compressors inside the wheel wells, and safer too since there's no way for the spring to slip. You don't even need to remove the wheels, although access to remove and replace the rubber bushing is easier with them off.

Simon
Just got done doing it this way. So easy it was scary. Picked up a regular old 14x1.5 nut at the ol hardware store.

Hardest part was getting the first nut off. Well I do live in the rust belt. Impact wrench was the only option on one side. PB blaster helped.

Tips..
Dont tighten the temp nut down.
Use your knee to push down the tire.
Keep your fingers out of the way! They dont make good bushings:eek:
 

jokila

Vendor
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Dec 3, 2004
Location
Houston, Texas
TDI
2003 Jetta GLS, Manual
Make sure you buy some top caps for the struts. They are inexpensive.

It makes a difference to keep the threads from rusting. I had one break on me so I didn't replace it. A few years later and guess which side was rusty and hard to take off?
 
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