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How to install a rear sway bar on a 2001 Legacy
Posted 27 July 2005 - 08:36 PM
5mm allen key
WD40 or other
I installed this while the car was on the ground. I am small, flexible, and extremely patient...your results may vary
Locate the endlinks...one on the drivers side and one on the passengers side. Insert a 5mm allen key into the end of the bolt and use the 14mm wrench to take the nut off. This can be a slow process, so stay calm. Picture shows 5mm allen key with 14mm wrench:
Next, locate the bushing brackets. There is a bracket on the drivers and passengers side, and there are two (2) 12mm bolts on each one. Take them off. The passengers side upper bolt may be tricky because of clearance issues, so be prepared for that.
Now the bar is loose and ready for removal. Lower the passenger side first, then snake the drivers side around the exhaust. Now that it is removed, compare it to your new bar. I installed a 22mm (7/8") sway bar from IPD with the supplied new bushings and brackets. Compare and laugh. Stock 13mm v.s. 22mm:
Next, you need to somehow snake that new bar back up into there. Nearly impossible! I put a floor jack under the rear differential and lifted the wagon nearly off the ground so that I could get a better approach angle...it's still tricky but it is doable on the ground. Installation is opposite of removal of stock bar...insert drivers side first then passenger side.
Once the bar is in place, grease the bushings (IPD supplies both), slip them over the bar, and then loosely attach the brackets to the stock mounting locations with the stock 12mm bolts (Apply antisieze on the bolt threads):
Next, put the endlink bolt through the holes on the bar at both ends. Because of increased thickness, it barely takes any time to tighten the 14mm nuts down. Remember, you need the 5mm key to do this task so the bolt doesn't spin in the endlink. Also remember to tighten the bushing bracket bolts as well.
This took about 2 hours to do while the car was on the ground. I soaked all bolts in WD40 a few days in advance, which made it a lot easier. The wagon handles so much better than stock with this modification, even on the stock suspension. Enjoy!
Posted 28 July 2005 - 11:05 AM
I greased up the bushings really nice, but after installing them, all the grease squished out of the sides and within two weeks, the bushings were grabbing, squeaking, groaning and rusting.
I swapped them out for some Energy Suspension units that have zirk-fittings in the clamp, and have grease-channels in the bushing. I grease them weekly with marine grease (rainy-weather driving does a number on the lube).
Another thing I've heard about (but haven't tried) is teflon pipe tape betwen the bushing and bar. Sounds like it would work, but I'm not sure how long that would last.
I still have yet to put the larger bar on my other Impreza, but I've decided that this time around I'm gonna stick with rubber bushings and endlinks. Two reasons: No maintenance hassles and increased initial articulation/compliance between left and right which helps winter traction and makes the car a little more "idiot-proof" at the exit of an over cooked turn (or emergency manuever). It's the unloading of the chassis that gets you into trouble and spins the car. Rubber bushing in the rear will bring the vehicle back to a zero slip-angle a little more gracefully. It's something to consider anyway. I like the stiffer endlinks on the front because they tighten up that rocking motion when making left/right transitions.
Posted 28 July 2005 - 01:24 PM
Good tips though, I will remember those if this thing starts making noise
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