How to Stop Squeaky Control Arm Bushingsby Allen MooreUpdated July 12, 2023
Control arms are triangular-shaped suspension components that connect a vehicle's wheel hubs to the chassis. The point of contact between the control arms and the chassis has a set of round rubber bushings that reduce vibration transference and prevent metal-on-metal contact between the arms and chassis. If the bushings incur water intrusion or other contamination, they can begin squeaky when you drive over bumps in your car. During routine maintenance inspections, it's a good idea to inspect the control arm bushings for excessive signs of wear such as cracking, flaking or advanced deterioration, which can also bring undesirable creaking noises and squeaking noises. Here is a DIY way to fix the squeaky suspension.
To address squeaky control arm bushings in your car's suspension, there are several steps you can take. First, it's important to diagnose whether the noise is indeed coming from the control arm bushings. Enthusiasts and DIYers often prefer polyurethane bushings as an aftermarket option, as they offer improved durability and performance. These can be easily found on platforms like Amazon. Once you have identified the problem and acquired the necessary bushings, begin by inspecting the ball joints, lube the struts, and check the sway bar for any signs of wear. Grease fittings can also be used to apply lithium grease to the control arm bushings and other relevant components. Additionally, ensure that the tie rods and stabilizer are not worn out and meet the specifications outlined in the car's manual.
1. Climb under the vehicle with the silicone spray lubricant
Climb under the vehicle with the silicone spray lubricant. Lube is essential in making sure all parts move smoothly. Insert the spray straw into the lubricant's nozzle by hand.
2. Insert the tip of the spray straw into the gap around the front lower control arm bushing
Insert the tip of the spray straw into the gap around the front lower control arm bushing and spray several quick bursts of lubricant.
3. Repeat Step 2 on the rear lower control arm bushing
Repeat Step 2 on the rear lower control arm bushing, as well as the front and rear upper control arm bushings.
4. Climb out from under the front end of the vehicle
Climb out from under the front end of the vehicle. Push down on the right front corner and quickly let go to bounce the right front end slightly and then again on the left front corner. This flexes the control arm unions, which works the lubricant deeper into the bushings.
5. Repeat steps one through four if the bushings still squeak
Repeat steps one through four if the bushings still squeak after road testing.
Apply the parking brake and block the rear wheels to prevent movement of the vehicle. Raise the front of the vehicle off the ground with a floor jack and slide jack stands under the front frame. Lower the car onto the stands and remove the floor jack.
Remove the front wheels using a lug wrench. Visually inspect the upper control arm bushings, pressed into the ends of the control arm bolted to the frame, and replace any bushings that are split or are misaligned. Position the floor jack under the lower control arm and raise the control arm and suspension. Push in and pull out on the upper control arm using a pry bar. Replace any bushings that allow the control arm to move.
Slide under the vehicle. Visually inspect the lower control arm bushings for cracking, splitting and oil saturation. Insert the pry bar between the frame and the lower control arm. Pry out on the control arm while observing the bushings and the shaft that passes through the bushings. Replace any bushings that are damaged or allow the lower control arm to move.
Remember to follow any warranty guidelines, especially if your vehicle is a Chevy, GMC, or Toyota, to avoid any potential issues with the new bushings. By following these steps, you can effectively address squeaky control arm bushings and restore smooth operation to your car's front suspension.
Video: How to fix suspension squeaky noise coming from the upper control arm
Helpful comments on this video:
- This is exactly what is making me crazy at the moment. Both the official car repair center and the tire care specialist could not figure it out and explained me many fairy tale which they told I have to accept, suffer in silence and go home. Thanks for sharing.
- The best lubricant I have found for any bushing on a vehicle is AT205 Reseal. It rejuvenates the rubber and makes it stop squeaking. Nice video
Things You'll Need
- Silicone spray lubricant with spray straw
Allen Moore's career includes awards in poetry and creative fiction, published lyrics, fiction books and nonfiction articles as well as a master certification in automotive service from the Ford Motor Company. Moore is a contributing writer for RF365.com and various other websites, a ghostwriter for Rainbow Writing and has over a dozen works of fiction currently in print.