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  #1  
Old 09-23-2008, 08:57 PM
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Default 96 Camry Struts

My struts are shot. How hard is it to change out the struts myself. They have gotten super bad like rattling very bad and I don't want to play $900 buck to get it done. Any help thanks
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  #2  
Old 09-23-2008, 09:53 PM
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Default RE: 96 Camry Struts

Do all the struts rattle or front/back?

Typically it is the upper strut mount that wears out not the strut itself. Or could be the sway bar bushings or sway bar end links.

Changing the mounts and struts require removing the strut/spring assembly, an easy straight forward job. Replacing either requires a spring compressor.

The rear struts require taking out the rear seats and deck. Again an easy job.

If taking the strut appear take note of the upper mount orientation relative to the lower part of the strut. They need to be facing a certain direction.

Replacing the sway bar bushings or endlinks should be easier unless the bolts are rusted and frozen.

THe website www.autozone.com may have details on strut replacement.
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Old 09-23-2008, 10:44 PM
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Default RE: 96 Camry Struts

You can do it yourself. Buy them from a parts store with a "loan a tool" program so that you can borrow a spring compressor from them.
That being said this is one of those jobs that it makes no sense to do yourself in my opinion. it has taken most of the day to do all four.
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Old 09-26-2008, 01:31 PM
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Default RE: 96 Camry Struts

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  #5  
Old 09-28-2008, 10:23 PM
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Default RE: 96 Camry Struts

To an extent, I do agree with Khooper, it would probably be better off done by someone else if you dont have the tools or knowhow to get it done yourself. If you're capable of doin the job youll save money. If you're not experienced and careful, you could possibly cause sever injury to yourself or worse.. the car [X(]
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  #6  
Old 10-17-2008, 01:58 PM
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Default RE: 96 Camry Struts

I replaced mine without previous experience a month or so ago. I found getting the back seats out of the way to be the most difficult part of the job. I bought a spring compressor from Harbor Freight for $20. My upper mounts were not worn out. One of my struts was completely worn out, however. If you do it yourself, make sure you buy the little kits with the boot.

This can be a very dangerous job if you're not careful.
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Old 01-08-2009, 10:16 AM
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Default RE: 96 Camry Struts

"toyomoho: Typically it is the upper strut mount that wears out not the strut itself. Or could be the sway bar bushings or sway bar end links."

What are (front) upper strut mount failure symptoms?My front struts have over 100,000 and the left frontsounds likegrease is being pressed out when the strut is compressed; but,I saw no leakage on shockcylinder. The car has also been making theknocking noises you described, but my wife took it to work. I'll check the bushings and links for the knocking sounds.

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Old 01-08-2009, 12:19 PM
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Default RE: 96 Camry Struts

Worn upper strut mounts can make a knocking noise when going over bumps. The rubber material in the mount breaks down and allows the strut rod to move around too much.

The sway bar bushings can wear out and allow the bar to move around too much. The result is a knocking/rattle noise when going over bumps and or sqeaking noises. The end links also go bad but this is much less common.

The above problems are very common on Camry, much more so then a damaged strut.

Drive over a bumpy road or speed bumps and listen for these noises, this is where the noise appears. It can be impossible to duplicate these noises by moving the chassis up and down by hand.

The strut could be worn and making the grease noise you describe. The test for proper strut operation is to get the chassis ocillating then release. If the chassis stops moving within two cycles the struts are still considered functionally OK.

The strut should not be leaking any oil although Toyota considers a very slight oil film/dirt buildup around upper piston seal area OK.

Struts rarely make a knocking noise, this is typically the strut mount, sway bar bushing, etc.

If your going to replace the struts also change the mounts as the strut assemble will be taken apart already.

Shocks wear out, typically the result is the ride quality deteriorates. One test for worn shocks it to push on the chassis to get the car oscillating then let go. If the chassis stops oscillating within two cycles the shock are still OK



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Old 01-08-2009, 08:28 PM
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Default RE: 96 Camry Struts

toyomoho, thank you for the detailed info. The strut test seems to indicate they're ok - thecar settles after 2 bounces after pushing down on the hood. My wife said she thought the knocking sound was coming from the upper part of the strut as she drove. Upon left strut compression, I can seemovement in the strut rod nut and hear 'rubber crunching/crinkling'. The sway barbushings look ok (no gaps between bar and rubber), but the sway bar link bushingslook like rubber missing. What do bad sway bar bushings look like? The carrecentlypassed180,000 miles. Any safety issue?

The sameknocking noise (going over bumps) is coming from the rear. Sway arm bushings looks same as front.I need to ride in the back and see if it is upper. Other than the knocking noise as a problem, is there any safety issue?
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Old 01-08-2009, 10:56 PM
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Default RE: 96 Camry Struts

No safety issues, neither front or rear bar can fall off if the bushings go bad. The bar would still be retained by a steel cap holding the bushing on.

It can be very difficult to look at a bushing and determine if it is bad. The bushings are cheap enough that once they are removed replacement is very low cost. If you think it is the bushings just replace them.

To replace the upper strut mounts the struts need to be taken apart from the springs. You will need a spring compressor. From you description the front mounts appear worn out.










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Old 01-08-2009, 10:56 PM
 
 
 
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96, 99, bad, bumps, camry, leaking, location, mount, rattling, rear, replace, springs, strut, struts, toyota, upper

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