The steering tie rod ends... the time to loosen the outer (and probably the
inner) tie rod ends is when the ball joints are loosened and not removed.
The steering knuckle holds the outer tie rod end and limits its movement,
while the steering box holds the inner tie rod end and likewise limits its
movement. The outer tie rod end is held with a 17mm locknut on the threaded
shaft of the inner tie rod end. To remove the outer tie rod end, loosen the
locknut while holding the inner tie rod shaft with an opposing wrench. Mark
the tight position of the locknut with fingernail polish or some such. Or
you can count the number of turns it takes to remove the outer tie rod end.
Regardless, the car will have to go to the alignment shop when repairs are
The stabilizer link bolts are simply an unbolt, remove and replace operation
with no torque applied; simply tighten until snug. Two wrenches are
required to unbolt the original parts.
The upper control arms... the driver's side is a snap. Both upper bolts are
easy to reach and the pivot arms can be torqued in the upright position
before the arm is put in place. On the passenger side, the fuse box sits
over the rear upper control arm nut. Remove the three accessible 10mm bolts
and you can then gently lift the fuse box enough to get a 17mm box end
wrench over the nut. Replacement is just the reverse.
Struts... on disassembly of the struts you will most likely find that the
stopper, as Honda calls it, will have to be replaced. This is a poly shock
bumper that sits within the dust cover. This can be a dealer part, and you
can also find it at Advance Auto and on the internet. An internet search
will bring you to what is called a bellows. This is the replacement part.
Advance Auto calls it a control arm bumper. The front and rear are
different. The end of the strut takes a 5mm Allen wrench and the bolt is a
Get down and dirty and take the weather boot or shield off the bottom of the
front of the car so that the radius rod fronts can be checked. The shield
is held in place with about six bolts. When I was removing the passenger
side of the shield, the radius rod nut, retaining washer and bumper fell out
in my face. Was that where the thumping noise was coming from? Duh. The
radius rod front consists of a 17mm nut, an outer retaining washer, a
sleeve, two rubber bumpers, an inner retaining washer and the threaded end
of the rod. The nut should be torqued to 42 ft. pounds.
The inner tie rod ends... these are covered by rubber boots. The passenger
side is accessible, but the driver side requires the steering box cover to
be removed. It has three 10mm bolts holding it in place. Take the two out
and loosen the third and the cover can be swung out of the way without
falling in your face. The Haynes manual says to snip the retaining clamps
off the boots and don't reuse them. The outer ends of the boots are wound
with wire, while the inner ends have clamps. I used needlenose pliers to
get the wire off and a small chisel opened the clamps. Wire ties can be
used as replacement clamps, or you can get replacement boots with clamps.
There is also a tiny hose coming into each of the boots that has a pressure
clamp on it. Just compress the clamp and slip it back, then slip the hose
off the boot. The boots can then be slid forward to reveal the inner tie
rod ends. I have not removed these as yet, but it appears that the easiest
way to do it is to have both inner and outer tie rods in place and
restrained by the steering knuckle/steering box so that the tie rods can be