2014 GC Limited - Replacing front struts. Replace Wheel Hubs? - JeepForum.com
 
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post #1 of 10 Old 03-10-2021, 06:13 AM Thread Starter
javsst
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2014 GC Limited - Replacing front struts. Replace Wheel Hubs?

With about 87,000 miles on the original front struts of the 2014 GC, I'm thinking it's time to replace them.

When I had the 2012, I had the dealership replace them but the job doesn't look too bad with the right tools. I do need to get better spring compressors. The ones I have are old and have the u-bolt clamps for safety. Kind of a pain to setup and they don't allow the compressor to settle on the spring. The newer ones with the slide bolt appear to be better.

The question that I do have is whether to replace the wheel hubs while I have it all apart. Not sure when, under "normal" circumstances one should consider replacing them. Looking over the replacement procedure, other than getting the wheel nut loose, it looks pretty simple, so I could just wait until there's an issue with the hub(s).

Then again, with the amount of potholes here in NJ and the one that I hit last week, that might be sooner than later

Thanks.

Steve


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post #2 of 10 Old 03-10-2021, 08:49 AM
ColdCase
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I've read that you should use one of those wall hanging heavy duty spring compressors, others either do not work well or are not that safe for the WK2 strut.

I just got lost in thought. It was unfamiliar territory;
Current: 2011 Grand Cherokee Overland V8, 2009 Liberty Rocky Mt V6
Previous: 2000 Grand Cherokee Laredo I6, 1979 CJ7 I6 Quadratrac
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post #3 of 10 Old 03-10-2021, 10:41 AM Thread Starter
javsst
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Coldcase - you bring up a good point. Last time I did struts, was on a 99 300M.

After that was a 2004 GC, but those are shocks, and the dealer did the fronts on my 2012.

Have to research the wall unit/stand alone a bit better. All the stand alone units on Amazon don't always rate well....

Then again I did buy the struts at an online Mopar dealer and my local dealer installed them. I think it was around $450 with the alignment. They didn't have a problem with me bringing the struts as long as they were Mopar units.

Sounds like 2+ hours of labor plus the alignment...

Kind of makes me think if its even worth it to do it myself to save $300, when I'll need to get the spring compressor and spend a day doing the work...

Guess it depends on how long I plan on keeping the GC. Then again, the spring compressor isn't a bad investment for spring/strut related work..

Steve

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post #4 of 10 Old 03-10-2021, 12:35 PM Thread Starter
javsst
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Then again, having the dealer do it is starting to look better.

So far, a heavy duty spring compressor that would work on a SUV spring is in the range of $700.... (Branick 7600).

Steve

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post #5 of 10 Old 03-10-2021, 01:18 PM
Bilko
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Thinking it's time to replace them? Are they broken? have they leaked, do they still work without excessive bouncing? Unless they are not shot this could be a whole lot of pain for no noticeable benefit.

If you decide to do this, I would opt to replace the hubs, even a genuine Mopar replacement cost less than $100 each. You will also need new axle nuts and these can be difficult to remove, some people try soaking them in WD40 or applying heat but this is hard work. Before you go down this path I suggest you try the AC powered, heavy-duty impact driver you can buy from Harbor Freight for about $70. It is a big and ugly tool with limited control but if you need to break a seized Fastener it will get the job done, I would not recommend this tool for tightening anything, the last person I know that tried this cracked his wheels around the lug nut holes. Do you have any local repair shops? I have a guy that swaps springs using a proper press and only charges $20 for a pair of coil-over struts

If you are replacing stock parts with stock parts you shouldn't need a realignment, there is not much, if any adjustment anyway. You may want to consider this if you go for lifted struts but otherwise, it's debatable if this is required.

At 87k I would also check out the rotors and pads, they should probably still be OK but it's worth applying some caliper grease to the end of the pads where they slide in the calipers. Because of the sliding caliper setup, one pad often wears more than the other because it's not sliding freely.

If you are a competent mechanic with some good tools this is a relatively easy job, if you are going to have to buy tools and learn on the job, paying the $300 may be the best option. I just prefer to spend the money on quality parts rather than labor.
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post #6 of 10 Old 03-10-2021, 02:25 PM Thread Starter
javsst
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Bilko - Thanks. Lot of good info.

The struts aren't leaking so I'll likely wait a bit later this year and check again. It's a little rougher on uneven road surfaces, but nothing harsh.

I've done struts and shocks (and hubs) before, so I have most of the tools
needed, but I don't have coil spring compressors that can effectively compress SUV springs.

Since this is my only vehicle, it's a one shot deal so I'd have to remove and service the struts myself.

Steve

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post #7 of 10 Old 03-10-2021, 04:12 PM
ColdCase
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Some here have taken the struts to a local shop and pay them a little money to swap the springs.

If your axle nut is badly rusted, you may want to replace the half shafts. Last I checked, those are relatively inexpensive.

I just got lost in thought. It was unfamiliar territory;
Current: 2011 Grand Cherokee Overland V8, 2009 Liberty Rocky Mt V6
Previous: 2000 Grand Cherokee Laredo I6, 1979 CJ7 I6 Quadratrac
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post #8 of 10 Old 03-12-2021, 06:14 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by javsst View Post
Bilko - Thanks. Lot of good info.

The struts aren't leaking so I'll likely wait a bit later this year and check again. It's a little rougher on uneven road surfaces, but nothing harsh.

I've done struts and shocks (and hubs) before, so I have most of the tools
needed, but I don't have coil spring compressors that can effectively compress SUV springs.

Since this is my only vehicle, it's a one shot deal so I'd have to remove and service the struts myself.

Steve
I have just noticed that your profile says you are in Lebanon! Can you get Jeep parts out there? You do know that all the WK2 suspension and brakes are actually Chrysler parts made under license from Mercedes, the same as the ML series. In your region, Mercedes parts may be easier to find.
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post #9 of 10 Old 03-13-2021, 06:32 PM Thread Starter
javsst
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Actually, Lebanon NJ

I think there are three Lebanon's around here, one in NJ, one in PA and i think one in NH

Thanks!

Steve

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post #10 of 10 Old 03-16-2021, 11:50 AM
Bilko
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I wish Americans and early settlers had been more original when naming their towns! I grew up near Newark (UK) and Holidayed in Jersey (UK) I suppose we call them Old Newark and Old Jersey now? It works the other way around as well, there is a village called California in Lincolnshire (UK), it is nothing like the real CA More Tractors and Combines than Jeeps.
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