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Suspension restoration...


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Well, now that I had the engine more or less rebuilt, it's time to address the suspension system. With 125k miles, the electronic struts are getting a little bouncy. All of the bushings are in sad shape, and there are mild knocks and rattles. The ride quality is still acceptable by all means, and the car still handles well, but by no means as nicely as it did years ago.

I'm leaning towards the Arnott system, so I won't have to hack any wires, but will safely bypass the active system. I like that the height-control in the rear will still be active. Any opinions on this? :unsure:

My second question... should I just plan on ordering every bushing I can find? I figure I will need to replace all the strut-mounts, is that safe to assume?

I'm hoping somebody has been down this road before me, and has some insight on what parts I should plan on replacing! :D

Thank you for the insight!

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Don't you wish they still made Eldo's? It would be soo much easier to just buy a newer one.I think about doing what your doing because no other Caddy impresses me like an Eldo.I would appreciate hearing how your project goes and if the payoff is worth the time,cost and effort.

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At this point, I'm too far in to give up and buy a new car! The way I'm looking at this, is that I own the car outright, and overall pay very little to keep it running. The first 'major' expense I had was when the head-gaskets let go. Considering I ran it nearly 6 years without any major work, I can't really cry about rebuilding the motor at 120k miles.

Now that the engine is running great again, the suspension needs some attention. Luckily, I don't think this will be too expensive. I'm hoping all said and done, I'll come in under $1k in parts and labor. Again, not bad, considering I've never thrown a penny at it in over 100k miles.

The cost savings for me really arrives in the insurance and excise tax bills. Since this is an "old" car, the insurance and tax rates are really good. I have friends that are paying over $3k annually just in taxes on their high-end cars! I figure what they pay to drive a new car in taxes, is what I pay to keep an older one that I love still rolling! ;)

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When I rebuilt my front end I replaced everything and I used POLY bushings were I could get them, this is the list of parts I replaced, I have a thread someplace

Strut Mounts

Struts (used Boston Suspension, would use Arnott now)

Springs

Strut Rod Bushings (poly bushings)

Control Arm Bushings

Stabilizer Bar Bushings

Wheel Hub Bearings

Ball Joints

Pre-1995 - DTC codes OBD1  >>

1996 and newer - DTC codes OBD2 >> https://www.obd-codes.com/trouble_codes/gm/obd_codes.htm

How to check for codes Caddyinfo How To Technical Archive >> http://www.caddyinfo.com/wordpress/cadillac-how-to-faq/

Cadillac History & Specifications Year by Year  http://www.motorera.com/cadillac/index.htm

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Thank you so much for the list!!!

Were you able to find the front control arm bushings, without having to buy an entire new control arm? It almost looks like a giant "ball joint" bushing, and I was concerned I'd have to buy the entire assembly.

And I didn't even consider replacing the springs! Do they loose their "spring" over time? ;)

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Ive replaced all the bushings on my 83 deville and now deal with the creaks. Polyurethane creaks pretty loudly on some applications. I know Ive heard of alot of others dealing with it also. Maybe some lithium grease or oil would put an end to it temporarily. Curious if any of you that have replaced everything on a newer caddy have heard any creaking after the swap.

* 1966 Deville Convertible

* 2007 Escalade ESV Black on Black

* 1996 Fleetwood Brougham Black on Black V4P -Gone
* 1983 Coupe Deville Street/Show Lowrider -Gone

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* 2000 Deville DTS - Silver with Black Leather and SE grille GONE
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Ive replaced all the bushings on my 83 deville and now deal with the creaks. Polyurethane creaks pretty loudly on some applications. I know Ive heard of alot of others dealing with it also. Maybe some lithium grease or oil would put an end to it temporarily.

Curious if any of you that have replaced everything on a newer caddy have heard any creaking after the swap.

My 2006 is having the upper and lower strut bushings / mounts replaced right now.

There is also a slight "TICK" when you turn the steering wheel back and forth a little bit.

That is also being checked out.

I will let you (and the dealer) know if there is any creaking after I get it back. :D

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Yes, I was able to buy the control arm bushings separately, the problem is finding a machine shop that has enough BRAINS to install them without using a 20 pound hammer, that is not easy to do

As far as the creaking or squeeking with POLY, I have heard that before but have not experienced it, i only used poly on my strut rods, I would have used poly on my stabilizer bar bushings also but didnt find them.

Here is a photo of my poly strut rod bushings (BLUE), that joint is tight very tight, I greased its contact point before assembly, that poly strut rod bushing causes my Deville to have steering that is responsive with great directional stability, no slop

LowerControlArminstalled.jpg

Pre-1995 - DTC codes OBD1  >>

1996 and newer - DTC codes OBD2 >> https://www.obd-codes.com/trouble_codes/gm/obd_codes.htm

How to check for codes Caddyinfo How To Technical Archive >> http://www.caddyinfo.com/wordpress/cadillac-how-to-faq/

Cadillac History & Specifications Year by Year  http://www.motorera.com/cadillac/index.htm

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BostonETC97,

My recommendation would be to replace the components that are actually causing creaks/noise. If the car rattles going over bumps, chances are one or both stabilizer links are shot.

Check the rear knuckle bushings - they are known to go bad and cause squirrely handling. Grab the top of the tire and rock the car - if you notice looseness, the knuckle bushings are shot. Advance Auto Parts now sells replacement bushings.

I have Arnott struts on the back of my '96 Seville - they ride fine and don't set the SERVICE RIDE CONTROL message.

Edited by KHE

Kevin
'93 Fleetwood Brougham
'05 Deville
'04 Deville
2013 Silverado Z71

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KHE is correct, but you said you wanted to RESTORE the suspension, I gave you all parts to restore the front end as it sounded like that is what you wanted to do. I tend to overkill...

Pre-1995 - DTC codes OBD1  >>

1996 and newer - DTC codes OBD2 >> https://www.obd-codes.com/trouble_codes/gm/obd_codes.htm

How to check for codes Caddyinfo How To Technical Archive >> http://www.caddyinfo.com/wordpress/cadillac-how-to-faq/

Cadillac History & Specifications Year by Year  http://www.motorera.com/cadillac/index.htm

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Check the rear knuckle bushings - they are known to go bad and cause squirrely handling. Grab the top of the tire and rock the car - if you notice looseness, the knuckle bushings are shot. Advance Auto Parts now sells replacement bushings.

When did that happen? Any idea about how much those are?

WARNING: I'm a total car newbie, don't be surprised if I ask a stupid question! Just trying to learn.

Cheers!

5% discount code at RockAuto.com - click here for your discount!

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Now I'm thinking twice about throwing money at this. The suspension still works fine by all standards, doesn't droop in the rear, or bottom out. I get an occasional "crack" sound from the rear suspension when opening the door in the morning, probably the knuckles. The only other annoying sound is the rattling of the stabilizer-bar links/bushes. In reality, rehabing the entire suspension system may just be a $1,000 solution to a $50 problem. :unsure:

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By the way, I did all the work myself, so that saves a bunch of cash doing a total rehab, but if you are getting that noise from the rear, your knuckles probably are the problem...

Pre-1995 - DTC codes OBD1  >>

1996 and newer - DTC codes OBD2 >> https://www.obd-codes.com/trouble_codes/gm/obd_codes.htm

How to check for codes Caddyinfo How To Technical Archive >> http://www.caddyinfo.com/wordpress/cadillac-how-to-faq/

Cadillac History & Specifications Year by Year  http://www.motorera.com/cadillac/index.htm

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I ordered the sway-bar links off rock-auto, and attempted installing them yesterday. Long story short, I didn't trust the jack I used, and managed to cut my hand before I even got one of the totally rusted nuts off. Suddenly, as I was laying on the garage floor, cold, wet, angry, and bleeding, I realized why I'm not a mechanic. I put the wheel back on, lowered the car off my crap-tastic jack, and scheduled a visit to the shop. :blink:

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My brother and I changed the stabilizer links on my car a couple weeks ago. It was definitely NOT a fun or easy job. They were a royal pain to get off. It's amazing how seized some of the nuts and bolts in the suspension can get!

big4870885.jpg

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I ordered the sway-bar links off rock-auto, and attempted installing them yesterday. Long story short, I didn't trust the jack I used, and managed to cut my hand before I even got one of the totally rusted nuts off. Suddenly, as I was laying on the garage floor, cold, wet, angry, and bleeding, I realized why I'm not a mechanic. I put the wheel back on, lowered the car off my crap-tastic jack, and scheduled a visit to the shop. :blink:

That is always an alternative when you realize the savingings or your life isn't worth the effort. It is always a good idea to start spraying those under carriage bolts down with a good penterant a few days before you attempt working on it and always support the car with jack stands. Once you see a hydraulic jack blow a seal and how fast it comes down you will never trust a jack alone again.

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I ordered the sway-bar links off rock-auto, and attempted installing them yesterday. Long story short, I didn't trust the jack I used, and managed to cut my hand before I even got one of the totally rusted nuts off. Suddenly, as I was laying on the garage floor, cold, wet, angry, and bleeding, I realized why I'm not a mechanic. I put the wheel back on, lowered the car off my crap-tastic jack, and scheduled a visit to the shop. :blink:

In cases like this, a blue-tipped wrench (oxy-acetylene torch) never fails to save the day. It is one of the handiest tools I have in my aresenal.

Kevin
'93 Fleetwood Brougham
'05 Deville
'04 Deville
2013 Silverado Z71

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I ordered the sway-bar links off rock-auto, and attempted installing them yesterday. Long story short, I didn't trust the jack I used, and managed to cut my hand before I even got one of the totally rusted nuts off. Suddenly, as I was laying on the garage floor, cold, wet, angry, and bleeding, I realized why I'm not a mechanic. I put the wheel back on, lowered the car off my crap-tastic jack, and scheduled a visit to the shop. :blink:

In cases like this, a blue-tipped wrench (oxy-acetylene torch) never fails to save the day. It is one of the handiest tools I have in my aresenal.

That's exactly what it took to get mine off. Lol.

big4870885.jpg

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