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I was changing my lower control arm on my 07 Accord and noticed the sway bar link is bad. I'm thinking about changing the sway bar link this weekend but it was so hard to put the old sway bar link back in even though they were extremely loose already. Is it normal or do I have to change something else now?

Old sway bar link

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Did you have both front wheels in the air?

Because the anti-roll bar is connected at both ends, it helps to remove the end-link nuts on both sides, refit the end-links without fully tightening the nuts. Only fit the nuts when both end-links are slotted in happy places.

It helps to remove both wheels so there is less load on the anti-roll bar. Make sure the anti-roll bar is centred before you begin fitting the end-links, sometimes they end up in a bind and it makes fitting difficult.

Don't fight it to refit, you should not need to leverage or force it in.

One other note: some service manuals say to do the final torque-ing of certain suspension nuts/bolts when the vehicle is on the ground. (i.e. make everything snug, and only tighten once the wheels are on and car is on the ground). This might be true for end-links but it is more common for wishbone through-bolts Check for your vehicle specific information.

  • The major thing here is to ensure both sides of the car are at the same level (in the air on jack stands or on the ground). If you have jacked up one side, the end links will never meet because there is torque on the sway bar. The load on the wheels will make no difference, but you do need to make sure both sides are the same. Good point about not tightening everything until the suspension is on the ground. This saves a lot of squeaking on most vehicles. – Pᴀᴜʟsᴛᴇʀ2 Jan 26 '17 at 12:18
  • To expand on this answer, even having two wheels in the air may not do the trick, depending on the car's setup. I ran into this exact problem with my 04 Volvo XC90 last night because the sway bar bushings are molded onto the bar. So when the car is in the air, the rubber bushings are exerting torque on the ends, trying to raise them back to level. The solution for me was to always have one link attached, and put a small jack under the opposite side's knuckle to raise it a few inches. – atraudes Jan 27 '17 at 1:11
  • Thank you all for your answer. I'm gonna try to lift both wheels up, I just found it weird because the driver side was so much easier to installed, maybe the ground was uneven. – NDta Jan 27 '17 at 3:43

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