Sway Bar Bushing Replacement Gone Wrong!!! - Jeep Compass Forum
 
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post #1 of 13 Old 01-25-2014, 05:14 PM Thread Starter
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Sway Bar Bushing Replacement Gone Wrong!!!

I need help!

i am in the middle of replacing sway bar bushings on my wifes compass right now.
for anyone who has done them you know how little room there is to work... One of the nuts that holds down the metal bracket for the bushing on the driver side just snapped half way out.

there is hardly room to get a wrench in there let alone a drill to drill it out, i have doubts that even a right angle drill will fit and if it does i wont be able to see what im doing. Also it seems i cant get at it from underneath bc the bolt is boxed in the frame.

what the *** can I do???? im considering just putting the one bolt back in and welding the other side

07 compass 2.4L 4x4 CVT: (all stock)
wifes car...when it breaks its my headache... Located in the US
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post #2 of 13 Old 01-27-2014, 01:49 PM Thread Starter
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well figured id at least get the other side done............yea right.........broke one of those bolts too!!!!

there is a little more room on the passenger side but i still hav no idea what to do about this.

just another bad design on the front end of the compass i guess, surprised i cant find anything online about other people breaking these. maybe other people are getting to them a few thousand miles earlier before rust takes over

07 compass 2.4L 4x4 CVT: (all stock)
wifes car...when it breaks its my headache... Located in the US
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post #3 of 13 Old 01-28-2014, 03:33 PM
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I not exactly sure which or where those bushing are (maybe ones in the middle of the bar area. But I'd have to look). Those bolts should be a high grade steel and not break. Must be some cheap made in china bolts used. I guess penetrating oil is needed in advance.

I have never heard of them bushings going on any other vehicle equipped with sway bars. 2007 seems to be the worst build year from what I've seen thus far.

Good luck with it.

Jeep Compass 2009
4x4, 2.4L, CVT
North Edition
heated seats, TPMS
General Altimax RT43 P225/65R17
Yellow Fog Lamps
CLASS III Curtis Hitch
SOLD @ 153,000km Oct. 2018 THE END !!
Belleville, Ontario, Canada

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post #4 of 13 Old 01-29-2014, 12:07 AM Thread Starter
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they are on top of the frame just before the stabalizer/sway bar comes out in the wheel well. They clamp down on the stabalizer/sway bar.
I will take pictures next time im working on it

in my other cars the bushings are pretty accessible but there isnt much room at all here.

the bolts are grade 8 (think i saw that stamped on them) but they were very rusty. i was coating in penetrating oil as i was removing every couple turns but because the bottom of the bolt is inside the frame i couldnt get to the worst part.

ive got only a couple options as i see it...

1 clamp down bad bracket side and weld it instead of bolt (assuming i can even get a clamp in there. hope i never have to deal with it again till i sell it

2. cut hole in frame to access broken bolt, knock off broken half of bolt and nut and re install new then weld a plate over the hole

ill update you all on what i do, and hopefully have pics

07 compass 2.4L 4x4 CVT: (all stock)
wifes car...when it breaks its my headache... Located in the US
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post #5 of 13 Old 02-02-2014, 08:59 PM
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Guinness,

Sorry to hear about your bushing issues. I actually changed mine out but I soaked the bolts with rust penetrating oil for two days while I swapped out my front end struts (following your great step-by-step post!! )

If you're just holding on to the Compass for another few years, I guess you could weld the brackets after swapping out the bushings. I'd be worried that the bracket isn't clamped tight enough to hold the bushing in place while you tack it otherwise you'll still have that play once you start hitting rough road. But I'm sure you'll work it out.

Good luck with whatever you decide!

Carlos

2007 Jeep Compass Sport 4WD - Black
4 Cyl, 2.4L CVT
195,000/mi -
215/65R17 - Continental ProContact ECOPlus

Replaced entire front end suspension at 190,000mi (control arms, inner/outer tie rods, bushings, etc.) (did it myself)

new Monroe struts at 160,000/mi (did it myself)
Ball Joints 2x-both sides - various mileage (did it myself)
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post #6 of 13 Old 02-03-2014, 11:44 AM Thread Starter
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i shoulda done the same with penetrating oil

thats the problem right now. the side of the bracket wher the bolt snapped is still 1/4" off the frame. im trying to get the right size clamp so i can tighten it down before i tack weld it.

07 compass 2.4L 4x4 CVT: (all stock)
wifes car...when it breaks its my headache... Located in the US
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post #7 of 13 Old 02-03-2014, 02:50 PM
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I try to avoid harsh bumps and rough road body thrusting on this suspension as much as I can knowing its not well designed or robust enough. Being that its not trail rated likely yields to that. But I wonder if the newer models which have some suspension difference ( I could not see or determine what they were) are actually much more robust.

Unlike my WJ Grand Cherokee which has been used in many rock climbing off road situation is built for it. As is the family Explorer Sport both having far heavier suspension components and links that aren't going to bend. wear of break in a pot hole city road.

Jeep Compass 2009
4x4, 2.4L, CVT
North Edition
heated seats, TPMS
General Altimax RT43 P225/65R17
Yellow Fog Lamps
CLASS III Curtis Hitch
SOLD @ 153,000km Oct. 2018 THE END !!
Belleville, Ontario, Canada

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post #8 of 13 Old 02-03-2014, 04:00 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Guinness View Post
i shoulda done the same with penetrating oil

thats the problem right now. the side of the bracket wher the bolt snapped is still 1/4" off the frame. im trying to get the right size clamp so i can tighten it down before i tack weld it.
If you can't find the right clamp, maybe you have a few steel shims laying around the garage you could use to close the gap enough that you could tack it.

2007 Jeep Compass Sport 4WD - Black
4 Cyl, 2.4L CVT
195,000/mi -
215/65R17 - Continental ProContact ECOPlus

Replaced entire front end suspension at 190,000mi (control arms, inner/outer tie rods, bushings, etc.) (did it myself)

new Monroe struts at 160,000/mi (did it myself)
Ball Joints 2x-both sides - various mileage (did it myself)
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post #9 of 13 Old 02-08-2014, 09:16 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CarlosHRNYC View Post
If you can't find the right clamp, maybe you have a few steel shims laying around the garage you could use to close the gap enough that you could tack it.
i thought about this but the problem is if you dont get the bracket to clamp down on the bushing enough the stabalizer bar will always have room to wiggle which will wear out the bushing even faster. so thats why i needed to clamp the bracket down to the frame b4 welding.

anyway, my solution ended up being to just weld it down.

for the driver side i first used a big clamp to draw down the bracket to the frame but bc of the position of everything it left me no room to weld, so i had my brother use a prybar to force down the bracket while i welded it to the frame. (sry no pics)


for the passenger side i was able to position the clamp differently since it was the rear bolt that had snapped, i clamped it and tack welded it, then gave a little more weld after i removed the clamp. see pics below

the bushing and stabalizer bar running through it



big clamp to the left (pressure has just been released) tack weld in place, bushing bracket is tight down to frame) bolt that didnt snap is installed on the right side



one more pic just after welding





if anyone else wants to try this repair you should note that the clamp i used is much bigger than what you would typically have at home. its hard to tell from the pics but even fully closed the clamp is 12" tall. the key though, is having a clmap that is deep enough to reach the bracket and not hit the frame first.

like i said though, i nice long prybar positioned right for leverage will work too.

im really not too happy with this repair myself but i just didnt see any other better option for me...

for the record, you CAN NOT just drive with one bolt installed!! any upward pressure on the suspension (potholes, speedbumps, etc) causes the stabilizer bar to want to push up (since it is attached to the lower strut by the end links) and the bushing bracket will bend if it not held down on the front and back. you front end will start clunking again.

However it should also be noted that if you have to drive for a little while with one bolt installed in this location you can do so as the stabilizer bar is not the most crucial part of your front suspension.

07 compass 2.4L 4x4 CVT: (all stock)
wifes car...when it breaks its my headache... Located in the US
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post #10 of 13 Old 02-08-2014, 09:38 PM
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I see the position is not the best. I hope the bushing you now have last much longer. Grinding the welds off to remove it again could be a pain getting access to it with the grinding wheel. Well it done.

I wonder what a dealer would have done it they were tasked to replace them. Hmmm...

Jeep Compass 2009
4x4, 2.4L, CVT
North Edition
heated seats, TPMS
General Altimax RT43 P225/65R17
Yellow Fog Lamps
CLASS III Curtis Hitch
SOLD @ 153,000km Oct. 2018 THE END !!
Belleville, Ontario, Canada

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post #11 of 13 Old 02-09-2014, 05:31 PM Thread Starter
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grinder wont fit at all!! i'll have to use a sawzall with a long metal cutting blade. if they last 50K miles ill be ok with that i guess...

i was wondering what a dealer would have done as well, it must have happened to someone else as well but i couldnt find any info online

07 compass 2.4L 4x4 CVT: (all stock)
wifes car...when it breaks its my headache... Located in the US
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post #12 of 13 Old 03-08-2014, 03:24 PM
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Hey Guinness... How is it riding after the weld?? Is it tight? No rattling?

2007 Jeep Compass Sport 4WD - Black
4 Cyl, 2.4L CVT
195,000/mi -
215/65R17 - Continental ProContact ECOPlus

Replaced entire front end suspension at 190,000mi (control arms, inner/outer tie rods, bushings, etc.) (did it myself)

new Monroe struts at 160,000/mi (did it myself)
Ball Joints 2x-both sides - various mileage (did it myself)
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post #13 of 13 Old 03-11-2014, 06:59 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CarlosHRNYC View Post
Hey Guinness... How is it riding after the weld?? Is it tight? No rattling?
Yes, thankfully after all that work it did solve the problem. There was a dullish clunk coming from both driver and passenger sides while driving over most bumps in the road. kinda sounded similar to when the control arm bushings went bad...

everything felt good and tight when jacked up, it was only by visual inspection of the bushings that i realized they were probably the culprit

07 compass 2.4L 4x4 CVT: (all stock)
wifes car...when it breaks its my headache... Located in the US
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