Acura MDX SUV Forums banner

1 - 9 of 9 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
798 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I don't know why I didn't replace the strut/shocks when I lowered my car the last time but finally got around to replacing them this weekend. There are a lot of how-to articles so I won't really get into that but will point out some things that may save you some headaches, especially cars that's lived in the snow states.

1. Spray a lot of PB Blaster(Kroil recommended for heavy corrosion) on the parts and let it sit overnight.

2. You will probably want to buy sway bar endlinks as most of these are rusted on and can be a b!tch to remove without damaging them. If you do have a hard time removing them and have stripped the hex hole, try using Vicegrips to hold down the collar next to the boot. If the Vicegrips still will not hold it, pull back the boot a bit and grind down two sides so you can put a wrench on it. Using a secondary jack will be helpful in removing the end link if you jack up the control arm/hub a bit.

3. Have a cutoff tool handy in case you end up stripping the hex hole on top of the front strut mounts like I did. I tried using some rubber sheet and clamping down the piston with Vicegrip with no luck. Finally had to just cut the top nut to get it out.

4. I've done multiple suspension swaps on various Civic's so I know the rear bolts can be a b!tch to get out on the lower control arms. For some reason on the MDX's though, even if you manage to get the bolts free from the threads, you may not be able to pull it all the way through the sleeve if there is any corrosion inside of it as I've found out. I could get the bolt 3/4 of the way out but then it would just spin and wouldn't come out no matter how hard I pulled on it.

I ended up cutting it off and getting new bolts from the dealer.

Bottom line for the rears: If you don't have a good impact gun, take it to a mechanic first to have them loosen the rear lower shock bolts and see if they can take it FULLY out.

Other than that, everything is straight forward. You can get the alignment checked afterwards but you probably won't be off since toe is the only thing adjustable in the front and for the rear, you're only removing the shocks which shouldn't affect alignment settings.









Temporary bolt until I get some from the dealer. Notice my upper rear adjustable control arms to get it close to stock after lowering.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1 Posts
Nice write-up. With 113k miles on my 10 MDX Tech, I decided to refresh the suspension. I went with a strut kit from Unity and picked up a set of Monroe rear shocks from a local parts store. I intended to do the swap myself, but frozen strut and shock bolts soon directed me to my local mechanic. For $300 he completed the swap and I am satisfied with the results.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
751 Posts
Nice write-up. With 113k miles on my 10 MDX Tech, I decided to refresh the suspension. I went with a strut kit from Unity and picked up a set of Monroe rear shocks from a local parts store. I intended to do the swap myself, but frozen strut and shock bolts soon directed me to my local mechanic. For $300 he completed the swap and I am satisfied with the results.
Keep us up to date on those UNITYs.

I've seen them at rockauto dot com, but nobody vouches for that brand.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,338 Posts
How do you like the KYB shocks vs the OEM units?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
798 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
Hard to tell as my original stock units had over 100k on them.

However in my observation afterwards comparing them side to side, I'm questioning whether I really needed to replace them. The pistons compressed and rebounded exactly with the same characteristics between the old and new.

The KYB's seem just a hair more aggressive than the stock but once again, that could be due from the age. However I'm glad it is more on the aggressive side than mushy side for sure. If you take away the age aspect, I would go as far to say they are the same dampening wise.

Also we all know Honda's tend to be more oversprung on most of their cars leading to less stress on shocks, so it wouldn't surprise me that the originals were still in good condition.

European cars in general tend to be more over damped otoh, so shocks are expected to go out sooner on those cars.

I would describe the ride between the old and new in my case as 90-95% identical.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,338 Posts
Thanks for the input.
I was expecting them to be on the firmer side since in the TL-S they are a lot more aggressive than stock, and KYB also manufacturers the OEM Unit on the TL.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
87 Posts
Any tips for re-installing the control arms? I had a hard time pulling it out trying not to damage the hub or brake rotor. I was thinking of removing the top one of the two lower strut mounting bolts so the hub can pivot, but not sure if that will help. I happen to be replacing the strut assembly at the same time, but was planning on doing that after I got the control arm back on.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
798 Posts
Discussion Starter #8
I just attached inner side to use as a pivot and used an extra Jack to raise the outer portion of the control arm into place.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
34 Posts
This thread makes me appreciate moving out of the rust belt 8 years ago. I have a 2008 Pilot and 2010 MDX and both still look like new underneath. I do not miss working on Michigan cars when I lived up there....
 
1 - 9 of 9 Posts
Top