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1999 forester s turbo
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802 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I am finaly getting round to changing my suspension tomorrow, (weather permitting.) This might sound stupid but how do I tell which strut goes on what corner? They are KYB from a 2000 Impreza, two are long and two are short. Do the shorter ones go on the front or rear? Or vice versa?
 

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'09 STI
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4,129 Posts
Put the long ones in place of the long ones you take off and put the short ones in place of the short ones you take off. :biggrin:

The long ones go in the rear.
 

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2002 SG XT Auto
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3,490 Posts
If you look on the top of the top hats, it should say OUT or have an arrow, can't remember which. Meaning this side faces out.
The two big bolt holes on the bottom of the leg of the strut face outwards.

Make sure you can get to a motor spares place though as you need to disconnect the brake lines to get the strut out. One of mine had seized and twisted the line so was unusable. If it happens, just take the old section, or a piece of string the same length and get another made. About £3. Easy fix.
 

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'09 STI
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4,129 Posts
Left and right is usually distinguished by the aforementioned brake line brackets. You can just cut the bracket off the old ones and zip tie the lines to the struts or disconnect them and rebleed if you choose.
 

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99 UK S-turbo
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8,566 Posts
Long is rear, short is front, compare the brake line brackets to the one you remove for left and right - simples.

Simon
 

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2004 Forester XT '06 STi 6MT
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707 Posts
yes like said above. long = rear, short = front.

in my experience as to which side is L or R:
with coilovers you usually have to match the brake line brackets to the lower mounts

with most aftermarket struts they should have an L or and R stamped on them somewhere...well at least logical/quality aftermarket struts will.

but if they don't then you can also just match the brake line brackets to the stock struts you pull off. not really all that hard!
 

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1999 forester s turbo
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802 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
Thanks everyone. I was thinking that the long were for the rear and short for the front. It's pissing down today so wont be doing them untill we get some sunshine. This is my first major job on the car, am thinking that it should take me an hour (tops.) for each strut, so if I start early I should be done by midday. One more thing. I have drop links, is there any other rubber bits that I should replace while i'm at it?
 

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2002 SG XT Auto
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3,490 Posts
I'd say a couple of hours for each one mate.
A good scrub inside the wheel wells and a decent coat of Waxoil wouldn't go a miss. Might as well pull through some new brake fluid instead of just bleeding them as well. Rear diff oil change too whilst the cars in the air.

Then breakfast.
 
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Brake lines are easily removed by cutting through the tab towrds the brake line, then with a pair of pliers simply bend one half of the cut tab up and one half down to slide out brake line...
 

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99 UK S-turbo
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8,566 Posts
Seconded, that is how I did mine.

It should take no more than 1hr/corner.

Simon
 

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1999 forester s turbo
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802 Posts
Discussion Starter #11
It's taking longer than I thought. The bolts are rusted on firmly. And my ratchet spanner wont fit into the gap for the lower bolt. It's very frustrating.
 

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1999 forester s turbo
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802 Posts
Discussion Starter #12
After trying all day yesterday, I still havnt managed to remove the struts. The top hat bolts came off no probs, but the two 19mm lower bolts refuse to budge. All I achieved was was a broken 19mm socket which now has to go back to the shop. Am very pissed off. Whats evryones top tips for releasing rusted on nuts/bolts? I've been using WD40 to try to loosen it. Iv'e been told to use Coca Cola, candle wax, vinegar, brake fluid or heat it but I dont have a source of heat powerfull enough, apparantly a blow torch wont do.
 

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2003 Subaru Forester XS
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167 Posts
Heat them up until they become red and then pour cold water on them. Worked on my Honda . Just be careful not to burn or melt the CV joint boot.
 

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2007 Outback Manual
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575 Posts
Do you know anyone with a compressor and air impact gun that could give you a hand? Mine is the 2nd best tool in my garage (the best tool being my Dad :biggrin: )
 

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1999 forester s turbo
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802 Posts
Discussion Starter #15
I dont know anyone with a compressor. :icon_sad: I am just going to have to keep trying with the WD40 and me spanners.
 
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Go to halfords and buy a 19mm impact socket, put this on the end of a jesus bar and wrench it round to crack the bolt..
 

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After trying all day yesterday, I still havnt managed to remove the struts. The top hat bolts came off no probs, but the two 19mm lower bolts refuse to budge. All I achieved was was a broken 19mm socket which now has to go back to the shop. Am very pissed off. Whats evryones top tips for releasing rusted on nuts/bolts? I've been using WD40 to try to loosen it. Iv'e been told to use Coca Cola, candle wax, vinegar, brake fluid or heat it but I dont have a source of heat powerfull enough, apparantly a blow torch wont do.
PB blaster or some other penetrating oil. WD40 won't really get it loosened up. I went through 3 ratchets before getting my struts swapped (luckily craftsman with free replacement!) Get a breaker bar with a big pipe on the end of it and just crank on it. I had to jump on the breaker bar to get mine out. Eventually it went. The next time I had to do it, only a highend impact wrench would budge them.
 

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one thing to try before investing in the breaker bar (if you dont have a 1/2" one), is to put the closed end of a 19mm combination wrench on the nut. Then take the closed end of a big combination wrench--17mm, or preferably a 22mm--and hook it on the 19mm's open end. Now try.
 

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1999 forester s turbo
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802 Posts
Discussion Starter #19
Thanks for all the advice peeps. I have ordered a nut splitter. I will buy new nuts and bolts for it after. Does anyone know the bolt length? The nut is 19mm.
 

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Does anyone know how long the factory front struts are for an 04? I just installed swift springs in my factory struts and attempted to swap out the STI takeoffs that I currently have installed. After taking off the passenger STI strut the factory strut is about 2" longer (~24") and doesn't seem to clear the outer CV boot. Any ideas as to how to get enough clearance?

Sidenote, While trying to finagle it in I also popped off the inner CV joint, D'oh!
 
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