How to Replace the Shocks and Struts in a Saturn Ionby Contributor
You want the ride in your Saturn Ion to be smooth and comfortable and you want to keep the passengers safe. The best way to make sure you can do all of these things is to replace your shocks and struts after 60,000 miles under normal driving conditions. You'll keep the handling and braking as well as the smoothness of the ride as good as when it was new.
Replace the Rear Shocks in an Ion
Lift the rear end of the Ion with a floor jack and support it with jack stands by the frame. Loosen and remove the nuts securing the rear wheels and set the wheels aside.
Remove the liner in the wheel well, and use a ratchet and a wrench to disconnect the lower bolt from the shock and the steering knuckle. Remove the upper mounting bolts connecting the shock to the body of the Ion. Pull the shock out and repeat this step on the other side of the Ion.
Position the new shock under the Ion and insert the carrier-to-body bolts. Set the dial on your torque wrench to 40 foot lb. and tighten the bolts until you feel the wrench slip around them. Torque the new shock-to-knuckle bolt to 110 foot lb. Reinstall the liner in the wheel well and repeat this step on the other side of the car.
Mount the front wheels and lower the rear end of the car.
Replace the Front Struts in an Ion
Raise the front end of the Ion and support it with jack stands under the frame. Remove the front wheels and locate the struts under the front of the car. They look like springs with hardware running through them to mounting brackets on both ends.
Remove the stabilizer bar link from about midway down the strut. Remove the strut cap from the top as well as the body nut holding it to the frame. Unbolt the strut-to-knuckle bolts at the bottom of the strut and remove the nuts. Pull the strut out of the undercarriage and repeat this step on the other side of the Ion.
Position the strut in the suspension system and insert the upper nut. Torque it to 81 foot lb. Insert the strut-to-knuckle bolts and nuts and torque them to 89 foot lb. Attach the stabilizer bar link nut and torque it to 48 foot lb. Repeat this step on the other side of the Ion.
Mount the front wheels and lower the front end of the car. Have a professional align the front wheels.