How to Replace the Shocks and Struts in a Saturn Vueby Contributor
You bought a Saturn Vue to haul cargo or people, or both, and you want to keep it handling at its best. After 60,000 miles under normal driving conditions, you need to replace the shocks and struts in your SUV to achieve that and also to maintain the smooth ride it had when it was new.
Replace the Front Struts in a Vue
Lift the front end of the Vue with a floor jack and support it by the frame with jack stands. Loosen and remove the nuts securing the front wheels with a tire iron, and set the wheels aside. Locate the struts under the SUV. They look like springs with hardware running through and around them.
Find the brake hose in the wheel hub and follow it back to the strut. Disconnect the bracket securing it to the strut. Disconnect the stabilizer bar link from its nut halfway down the strut and push the bar back. Use a wrench and a ratchet to remove the strut-to-knuckle bolts at the bottom of the strut and the upper mounting nuts from the top. Remove the strut from the bottom of the Vue and repeat this step on the other side of the Vue.
Position the new strut in the body and set the dial on your torque wrench to 18 foot lb. Tighten the upper mounting nuts until you feel the wrench slip. Insert the lower mounting bolt and torque it to 133 foot lb. Attach the stabilizer bar link to the strut, and torque the nut to 48 foot lb. Attach the brake hose bracket to the strut and repeat this step on the other side of the Vue.
Mount the front wheels and lower the front end of the Vue. Have a professional do a front-end alignment.
Replace the Rear Shocks in a Vue
Lift the rear end of the Vue, support it by the frame and locate the shocks, which are right behind the wheel hubs. They look like two tubes that slide in and out of each other. Pop the hatch and remove the liner retainer and the liner.
Disconnect the lower shock bolt from under the Vue. Disconnect the upper bolt from inside the hatch. Pull the shock out and repeat this step on the other side of the SUV.
Position the shock in the rear of the SUV and install the upper shock bolt and the lower shock bolt. Torque them both to 81 foot lb. Repeat this step on the other side of the Vue.
Install the liner and the liner retainers in the hatch and close it. Lower the Vue.
- If you ever take your Vue off-road, have a professional examine your struts for wear whenever you balance or rotate your tires, because you might need to replace your struts before 60,000 miles.
- Different model years might have different torque specifications than those stated here. Ask a professional or an employee at the auto parts store for more information on your Vue.
Items you will need
- Floor jack
- Jack stands
- Tire iron
- Adjustable wrench
- Torque wrench