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1 min read

How to replace a wishbone

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Steering & Suspension How to Technicians 1 min read

Resource Highlights

A vehicle’s control arm (or wishbone) plays a key role in vehicle stability. Learn how to replace one safely. 

In what order do I remove the fixings on the wishbone? 

Start with the ball joint. Once you’ve removed the nuts here, don’t pull the wishbone arm down as you could damage the screw threads. Instead, remove the rear bolts first to give you some movement. After you’ve done this, remove the pivot bolt – don’t worry, the wishbone won’t fall all off as it is pinched in place by the rubber fitting. You’re now ready to lever behind the pivot bush and remove the wishbone.  

When visually checking the replacement part, what do I need to look out for? 

First, that their dimensions match. To do this, lay the new part onto the old one to inspect them. Also, compare the compliance bushes on the end of each to make sure that the angles are the same and that they have matching orientation.  

Do I need to use a particular hammer when fitting the new wishbone? 

We recommend using a soft hammer to get the wishbone in place so that no damage occurs.  

How do I align the wishbone so the centre bolt fits? 

To get the centre bolt aligned, you might need to manually move the hub so that it is perfectly central. 

Does it matter how I replace all the bolts? 

Start by fitting all the bolts gently from front to back. You might need to manually manipulate the fitting to get them in at the back. Once they are all in place, tighten them all evenly, apart from the pivot bolt which is left untightened until the vehicle is grounded. Only when the wheel is on the ground can you tighten the lower pivot bolt. 

Why can I only torque up the pivot bolt when the vehicle is back on the ground? 

The reason for this is that if you tighten the pivot bolt when the vehicles is jacked up, it can make a big difference to the lifespan of the bush. 

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