If the steering wheel jerks every once in a while, your jeep is in desperate need of a brand-new steering stabilizer. There are plenty of options available online and at your local hardware store. However, installing a steering damper the right way makes all the difference.
As a first-timer, you might have a lot of questions about this accessory. So, today we'll be answering most of them, including how to install steering stabilizers for cars, jeeps, and SUVs!
It's a simple process that involves accessing the underside of your car. This method is the easiest way you can get control of your steering wheel without paying hundreds of dollars to the repair store. Let's get started, shall we?
Installing a Steering Stabilizer: A Step by Step Guide
We're glad that you’ve finally decided to get a stabilizer for your jeep, and we can't wait to guide you on the installation procedure. Before we begin, let's introduce you to the parts that will definitely come up in the installation process.
Where is the Steering Damper Located?
First of all, two steering knuckles secure the two front wheels to the axle. A tie rod supports the knuckles and connects to a drag link.
Whether this center link joins the tie rod or the knuckles to the steering box will depend on your jeep's suspension. Either way, the steering box is linked to the steering wheel with a shaft.
That is how the basic steering system for a car goes. Just like that, whenever you accelerate, stop, or turn, the forces are passed on to the wheels.
However, as your old steering dampers lose effectiveness, the vibration of the tires can also translate to the steering wheel.
So, the best location for the new steering damper is between the chassis and the center link! Alright, now it's time to show you how to install a steering stabilizer. Take notes!
Step 1: Take the Old Steering Stabilizer off
The first step is to lift your car with jack stands. Local car repair services will often use ramps for this process. Anyway, the old steering damper should be near the passenger side coil spring. If you see a cotter pin holding the old stabilizer from one side, you can take the cotter pin out with a pair of wire cutters.
Usually, an 18 mm bolt supports the stabilizer from the other side. You can ease it out with a wrench. If it's being particularly stubborn, try tapping its head with a hammer. Be gentle; otherwise, you might damage the threading.
Step 2: Prepare the Mounting Bracket
You can use the same mounting bracket with a little modification. If the new steering damper is of a different size, you'll be provided with a template in the box.
Step two requires that you drill a ⅜ hole in the mounting bracket- just beside the old hole. Once you do that, the holes on the mounting bracket will align with the holes on the left shock.
Drive the stock bolt through the first hole and the new bolt through the second hole. Fasten them tightly and move on to the next step!
Step 3: Secure the Right Shock to the Mounting Bracket
The other shock has pre-drilled holes for installing bolts from the front and nuts from the back. It gets pretty straightforward from this stage. The shock should be facing up as you secure the washer and the nut one by one. You need to torque it down 100 ft. lb.
Now that you have both the left and right shocks in place, all there's left to do is finally install the spirit damper.
Step 4: Install the Stabilizer
The new stabilizer will have spacers on both ends. Put the spacers into the shocks and secure them with the two bolts.
In this specific step, you need to put a washer from the front and another washer and nut from the back.
Once you're done with the left side, pull the shock to the right length and secure it with bolts the same way. Now, you can get your jeep off the jack stands and drive around the block.
If you’ve followed our steering stabilizer installation instructions correctly, you'll notice a significant improvement in your ride. The vehicle, overall, is going to vibrate much less, and you can be more in control of the wheel.
Which Stabilizer Will Be Good for My Steering Wheel?
There are gas-charged shock absorbers and hydraulic stabilizers. What eventually works for your jeep will also depend on the condition of its tires, camber, fuel injector, and suspension points.
To be on the safe side, you can look for a hydraulic, universal-mount damper. Signs of a bad steering damper are when it leaks hydraulic fluid and produces a clunking noise.
The easy way to repair a vibrating vehicle is to take a quick look at the steering damper. If it's leaking, there's no need to worry. You already know how to install a steering stabilizer now, right?
We tried to make our installation guide as easy as possible. Get that stabilizer replaced before your vehicle runs into a serious problem. You can do it!