How to Replace the Springs in a Nissan Altimaby Contributor
The Altima is a family sedan with power and a stylish design. The Altima's springs are part of the MacPherson strut system and are somewhat easy to replace. The Nissan Altima's suspension is designed to handle well and the springs need to be in top condition to maintain the Altima's smooth ride.
Replacing the Front Springs
Raise the Altima and support the car securely with jack stands.
Remove the brake tube from the strut and disconnect the ABS wiring (if your Altima has Anti-Lock brakes).
Use a jack stand beneath the transverse link and remove the steering knuckle from the strut. Support the strut while removing the three upper attaching bolts and removing the strut from the Altima.
Mark the precise location of the spring on the strut assembly. Attach the compressor to the spring before removing the center retaining nut which holds the strut mounting insulator, and compress the spring before taking off the insulator and the coil spring. This step can be potentially dangerous if the compressed spring is not handled correctly.
Replace the spring and reassemble the strut assembly before attaching it to the car. Replace and tighten the upper attaching nuts and steering knuckle onto the strut. Be sure to torque the nuts to specified levels.
Reattach the brake tube and ABS wiring before bleeding the brakes and installing the wheel.
Lower the Altima and align the front end. Perform a safety check before taking the car onto the road.
Replacing the Rear Springs
Raise the vehicle and support securely by placing a jack beneath the rear axle before taking off the rear wheels and lower through-bolts on the strut.
Note the position of the upper plate of the strut before taking off the two nuts from the top of the strut and removing the strut assembly.
Install a spring compressor and compress the spring. Remove the strut center locknut. Make note of the location of the spring within the strut in order to reassemble it properly later.
Remove the spring from the strut by compressing the spring, taking off the center retaining nut on the mounting insulator and decompressing the spring before taking off the insulator and the spring. This is a potentially dangerous step as the spring has great deal of energy which must be released slowly.
Reinstall and reconnect the removed components in reverse order. Take special care when torquing the center retaining nut, upper nuts on the strut and the lower strut through-bolts.
Reattach the wheels and lower the car slowly. Perform a rear end alignment and conduct a safety check before taking the car on the road.
- Buy powder-coated springs which are coated with a rust proofing before the powder paint is applied and baked on. This process makes the spring much more resistant to corrosion.
- Take the pressure off the springs before disassembling. This is potentially very dangerous as the springs carry a great deal of force which is expended when their restraints are released.