How to Install Coil Springs on Your Car's Shocks

Coil Springs
  • 4-8 hours
  • Intermediate
  • 100-250
What You'll Need
Torque wrench
Coil springs
Jack stands
Spring compressor

Coil springs work together with the shock absorbers on your vehicle to give you the suspension that keeps your ride smooth and even. Coil springs can wear and need replacement. If your vehicle isn’t riding as high as it did or not handling as well, you need to replace the coil springs.

Step 1-Accessing the Springs

Make sure the vehicle is set in “Park,” with chocks behind the rear wheels to stop it slipping. Slightly loosen the lug nuts on the front wheels. Set a hydraulic jack under the front end of the vehicle and raise it. Put jack stands under the front axle to keep the vehicle secure as you work on it.

Loosen the lug nuts completely and remove the wheels. Depending on the make of your car you might have immediate access to the springs. With others you might need to take off the brakes or the shock absorbers to reach the springs

Step 2-Removing the Spring

To remove the old spring you’ll need to use a spring compressor. Put it in the coil spring. If you don’t use a compressor on the coil springs freeing the spring could lead it to come out violently, causing injury. Compress the spring so it’s fully coiled, then wrap a chain around the spring for an extra line of defense.

To take the spring out, use your torque wrench to loosen the bolts on the lower control arms. Once you’ve taken them out, you can lower the control arm, which will allow you to remove the spring. Once it’s off, you can take the chain off the spring and slowly loosen the spring compressor.

Step 3-Putting on a Coil Spring

Before you start to install a new coil springs, you should use the spring compressor to fully compress the spring, then add a chain for extra security. The spring needs to be pushed into the spring holders where the old spring sat. To keep it in place, raise the control arm and put the bolts back in.

To seat the bolts, you’ll need to use your torque wrench. You’ll also need to know the pressure necessary for the bolts, which you’ll be able to obtain from your service manual. Tighten the bolts. Remove the chain from the spring, then loosen and remove the spring compressor, so the spring can expand.

Step 4-Finishing

If you need to put back the shocks or the brake callipers after installing coil springs, do so now. Set the wheels back on the bolts and hand tighten the lug nuts. Put the hydraulic jack under the car and raise it enough to remove the jack stands.

Lower the car and fully tighten the lug nuts. The suspension on the back of the car might be configured slightly differently, but the same general principles will apply. You should use the same technique when removing the coil springs.