Replacing Shocks on YJ -
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post #1 of 10 Old 03-05-2005, 02:11 PM Thread Starter
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Replacing Shocks on YJ

I have heard that it is very easy to replace the shocks on a YJ. Is it at simple as just removing the old ones and bolting on new ones? Do I need any special tools? Should I take off the wheels or leave them on? Do I need to jack it up and if so where should I jack it?

1995 Wrangler YJ
2.5L, 5 speed manual transmission
Power Steering converted from manual, no A/C
Hella 550 fog lights
Edelbrock IAS Shocks
Skyjacker steering stabilizer
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post #2 of 10 Old 03-05-2005, 03:23 PM
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Replacing the shocks is very simple. You may need to use penetrating oil to remove the nuts, but other than that you should have no problems. Grab a Haynes manual and it will tell you how to do it, but if you just get under the Jeep its pretty obvious of what you have to do. There are some torque specs and visuals of how the bushings should look like when you tighten them, so you may want to research and get an idea of what it looks like.

All you need is your normal garage tools.

When I replaced my shocks, I was doing other suspension mods at the time so the wheels were off and the Jeep was on jackstands. The only real issue is having enough room to move a wrench under the Jeep. So if you have big enough tires then it should work out fine.

1994 Jeep Wrangler YJ, 2.5L High Output, High flow aluminum intake, 4.0L Throttle Body, 62mm TB Spacer, bored out intake manifold, 5spd, 3" suspension lift, 31" BFG A/Ts, Two 10,000lb tow hooks, DT3000s, Outland lightbar, 5 high powered offroad lights, Mapp Nerf Bars, 102" whip antenna, Midland CB, 6 speaker soundbar, Smallest leaf removed, Air restrictor removed, No trackbars, No swaybars, No A/C, Custom 32 song horn-
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post #3 of 10 Old 03-05-2005, 08:08 PM
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I work on one end at a time and one side at a time. First, check out your shock and look at how long it is when the little zip tie is on it (it keeps it compressed). Then you jack up the body of your Jeep until the original shock is as long as the new one. You may want to support the axle with some jackstands just as a precaution. Take off the tire, unbolt the old shock, bolt in the new shock, cut the zip tie, and put the tire back on. Do that four times and you're done. If you've never done it before, then it will probably take you and a friend about 2-3 hours and that's if you don't run into any problem :P

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post #4 of 10 Old 03-05-2005, 08:17 PM
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2002 TJ Wrangler 
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I replaced the shocks after10 years. Had one lower front bolt that was rusted to the sleeve in the shock bushing so bad I had to cut the bolt on both sides then pry open the shock mount sides to slide the shock out. Other than that, it was easy.

02 TJ Sahara 4.0 5 spd, 3.73, Dana 44 rear, 2.5" lift w/ Bilstein shocks, 33x12.50
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post #5 of 10 Old 03-07-2005, 11:10 AM
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Mine were rusted pretty I just cut the old ones off. Other than rust it was real simple.

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post #6 of 10 Old 03-07-2005, 12:07 PM
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It's a simple job unless they've been on there so long that rust will prevent bolt removal. If the bolts on the old shocks are rusty, start applying PB Blaster on it every day for a few days right before doing the replacement. That way, the day you do the job, they should be easier to remove....If not, its dremel or angle grinder time.....
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post #7 of 10 Old 03-07-2005, 12:36 PM
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Originally Posted by JungleLarry
I work on one end at a time and one side at a time.

This is good advice. It's hard to take two of them off simultaneously

If you have access to them, air tools help with the nasty rusty bolts (after using liquid wrench or something), but it can be hard to get the bulky air tools in there, especially in the back. Definately easier to get it up on stands (use the axles to jack it up so the shocks aren't at full droop when you go to take 'em off) and get the wheels off of there and out of the way. Great chance to take a peek at your break pads while you're in there too.

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RE 3.5", Bushwaker Flat Flares,
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post #8 of 10 Old 10-02-2010, 01:46 PM
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i see a couple people just straight cut the bolts off. i figure i'll have to on mine as the rust is pretty bad. anyone know off hand what size bolts it has stock? i'd like to have them in reserve just in case. any suggestions on material? i'm thinking stainless just for the hell of it so i don't have to worry about it if i decide to lift it any time soon.
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post #9 of 10 Old 10-03-2010, 12:03 PM
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It is a pretty easy job, i did mine a few months ago, i could not get my passenger side tires off so i replaced both of those with the tires on. PITA.

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post #10 of 10 Old 10-03-2010, 12:44 PM
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Originally Posted by bilwaukee View Post
i see a couple people just straight cut the bolts off. i figure i'll have to on mine as the rust is pretty bad. anyone know off hand what size bolts it has stock? i'd like to have them in reserve just in case. any suggestions on material? i'm thinking stainless just for the hell of it so i don't have to worry about it if i decide to lift it any time soon.
You can cut the lower and front upper bolts, but don't cut the rear upper bolts. They're welded to the frame.

I'll always try the wrench first before I cut.

Just get regular grade 8 hardware and nylok nuts. If you're going to lift it soon then rust wouldn't be a problem and as long as you put some grease on the threads it won't seize up.

91 YJ
98 XJ
2 door love
The U.S. Army vaguely envisioned something bigger than a motorcycle, smaller than a truck, and undaunted by the most difficult terrain.
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