2003 front struts - Page 2 - Kia Forum
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post #11 of 19 (permalink) Old 12-24-2012, 11:42 PM
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When i done the job i was having issues taking the front struts apart. I didn't have a pneumatic ratchet. I ended up taking the two old struts and the new springs and shocks to a local suspension store and they re-assembled them for me. was $110 i think in labour.
Just make sure you start early in the day so you have that option.
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post #12 of 19 (permalink) Old 12-25-2012, 10:19 AM Thread Starter
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I do have a local machine shop just encase. I do have air tools and a torch so i will try to manage myself as im also on a budget. I will try n post pics. Should have the parts by the weekend so we shall see.
The ride is so rough on the front end right now, i hope the ball-joints or control arms are ok. Otherwise, the car might have to stay apart until i get more parts. Im used to working on my ford truck lol (3 front end rebuilds). I did buy stabilizer bar bushings and end links. I figure 100k and they should at least be changed. After finished i will rotate the tires and take it to a alignment shop.

Frankly, I wonder who Frank is and why he has his own adverb
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post #13 of 19 (permalink) Old 12-25-2012, 05:53 PM
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You can give the ball joints a check before you start, jack up each front wheel and get a helper to rock the wheel backwards and fowards and in and out whilst you check for movement. Also get them to turn the steering wheel slightly back and forth whilst you check the rack ends. A little bit of movement is OK when they are unloaded like this, but any "clunks" mean replacement.

At least the ball joints are bolt in jobbies and so very easy to swap out. The upper one is built into the upper arm, a la Ford Explorer or Toyota Prado / Hilux, so you need to replace the whole arm but this way you get new rubbers as well.

My experience with Kia ball joints is that they seem pretty tough, the ones on my Sportage have done 14 years/ 250,000 Km, and the joints are still good, although the rubbers are beginning to go.
By this milage the (greasable) ones on my Pathfinder were completlely shot and they were driven on the same roads every day.

Ah yes speaking of Ford, I used to own a Ford Bronco and I rekon that the old twin traction beam fornt suspension was a near perfect setup for a 4WD, simple, super strong, and easy to work on, don't know why they ever changed it. If Ford had actually bothered to paint BOTH sides of the panels properly, yes, even the bits you can't see, but DO rust, I would probably still have that car.

Good luck with the changeover, let us know how you go.
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post #14 of 19 (permalink) Old 12-25-2012, 08:44 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by cmar View Post
You can give the ball joints a check before you start, jack up each front wheel and get a helper to rock the wheel backwards and fowards and in and out whilst you check for movement. Also get them to turn the steering wheel slightly back and forth whilst you check the rack ends. A little bit of movement is OK when they are unloaded like this, but any "clunks" mean replacement.

At least the ball joints are bolt in jobbies and so very easy to swap out. The upper one is built into the upper arm, a la Ford Explorer or Toyota Prado / Hilux, so you need to replace the whole arm but this way you get new rubbers as well.

My experience with Kia ball joints is that they seem pretty tough, the ones on my Sportage have done 14 years/ 250,000 Km, and the joints are still good, although the rubbers are beginning to go.
By this milage the (greasable) ones on my Pathfinder were completlely shot and they were driven on the same roads every day.

Ah yes speaking of Ford, I used to own a Ford Bronco and I rekon that the old twin traction beam fornt suspension was a near perfect setup for a 4WD, simple, super strong, and easy to work on, don't know why they ever changed it. If Ford had actually bothered to paint BOTH sides of the panels properly, yes, even the bits you can't see, but DO rust, I would probably still have that car.

Good luck with the changeover, let us know how you go.
Thanks,
Yeah last time i had the front up i checked for play and surprisingly enough, it seemed ok so im hoping it still is. Like i said, im used to ford trucks but then again, my ford truck weighs in at 19,000lbs with all of my equipment. A bit more stress for a front end than my sorento lol.. I will definitely let you know and take pics along the way. thank you

Frankly, I wonder who Frank is and why he has his own adverb
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post #15 of 19 (permalink) Old 12-27-2012, 05:24 PM Thread Starter
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I kinda regret not ordering the ballpoints and upper control arms after seeing how easy they are to change out. Very easy front end to break down. front stabilizer bar and end links shot! Good thing i ordered them. However i wish i did the same for the rear. You can literally grab the rear bar and slide it left and right. Ouch.. Ive also never seen rear shocks in such bad shape omg!! Those rear bushing are kinda hard to find... Oh well, will have it back together in the morning

Frankly, I wonder who Frank is and why he has his own adverb
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post #16 of 19 (permalink) Old 12-30-2012, 11:48 AM Thread Starter
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I got her all back together but she still rides rough.. While i was under there i noticed, pass side ball joint slight play, pass side outer tie rod lots of play, upper control arms slight play, rear stabilizer end links shot, rear sway bar bushings so loose to the point where you can grab the bar and slide it back and fourth at least 2 inches. I had to get it back together because i need the car this week but next weekend i will break it down again.. I have all of my parts in the cart but i have a question,
is it difficult to disconnect the inner tie rods or do they come out with out issues? I forgot to take notice of this. Im basically doing a close to complete rebuild on the front end. All balljoints, tie rods, end links, bushings, control arms plus all that i changed already. Can anyone think of anything else that should be changed in the process? thank you

Frankly, I wonder who Frank is and why he has his own adverb
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post #17 of 19 (permalink) Old 12-30-2012, 05:23 PM
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You mean the rack ends? Can't say as this is the first car I've owned with rack and pinion power steering and so I've never changed any.
I think that they just unscrew out of the steering box once you disconnect the tapered end, and you push up the dust shield out of the way.
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post #18 of 19 (permalink) Old 01-01-2013, 02:09 PM Thread Starter
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yeah not sure either but i will just order them. Upon further inspection i'll consider changing them. Im am however having an issue finding the rear stabilizer links for my 03. Rock auto doesnt have them in stock except for 1 make i never heard of and the shipping is too high.

Frankly, I wonder who Frank is and why he has his own adverb
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post #19 of 19 (permalink) Old 01-02-2013, 04:24 PM
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I used energy suspension links kit in proper length
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