How to replace shocks & struts on Toyota RAV4
If you notice the back of your car hitting the pavement, the shock fluid is visible, the front of your car pushes forward when you press the breaks, the car moves side to side when driving around corners or your car vibrates even when driving on smooth roads, it is time to replace your front struts and shocks. When you drive over potholes and bumps, these parts create a comfortable drive for both the driver and passenger. Here you can find some steps about installing these shocks & struts.
Step 1 - Loosen the wheel from suspension and pry off the cap in the centre of the rim with a flat head screwdriver. There's a small notch in the wheel specifically for that. Use the tire iron to slightly unscrew the lug nuts without taking them off completely.
Step 2 - Now lift the truck for it use the floor jack to lift the truck by the front suspension cross member. Put a jack stand under this area and lower it until the weight is firmly distributed. To maintain safety, keep the jack in the same place. And now remove the lug nuts and wheels.
Step 3 - Unbolt bottom of sway bar end link for it use an 18mm socket to unbolt your sway bar end link from the lower control arm. This will allow the control arm to move down when you're removing the bar.
Step 4 - Have a second person help you with using a 30mm socket and 1-1/26 wrench to take off the bolt on the lower strut. Remove the three upper strut nuts using a 15mm socket.
Step 5 - Use a 21mm deep socket to loosen up the ball joint bolt nut. Take the ball joint off of the spindle with a pitman arm puller and take the floor jack from under the control arm. This will allow you the flexibility and leverage to separate the wheel spindle from the upper ball joint. With the ball joint and all bolts free, remove the strut.
Step 6 - Place the new strut where the old one went. Tighten the strut in its place with 17mm nuts. Fasten the lower strut bolt and nut.
Step 7 - Have a second person help you with bolting the ball joint and upper control arm on the spindle and make sure to have a 21mm nut available to put the ball joint bolt back on and tighten the 21mm ball joint nut.
Step 8 - Place the tire and lug nuts on. Tighten lug nuts. In some cases, certain cars can have these parts replaced with 2-4 personal compressors, but springs for trucks are heavy. And this is how you can change your Shocks & Struts.
To buy shocks and struts check these articles: