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Rear Control Arm Bushing Replacement
 
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Pelican Technical Article:

Rear Control Arm Bushing Replacement

Steve Vernon

Time:

5 hours5 hrs

Tab:

$55

Talent:

***

Tools:

Jack, jack stands, Socket and wrench set, adjustable wrench, Mercedes-Benz Spring Compressor BM-924-0231, Mercedes-Benz Bearing R&R Tool, a bench or floor press

Applicable Models:

Mercedes-Benz W124 (1986-95)

Parts Required:

Bushings

Hot Tip:

Put the bushings in the freezer over night

Performance Gain:

Better handling

The rear lower control arm to wheel carrier bushings on your W124 will eventually fail. There is a rubber seal around the bushing that will eventually wear out and expose the bushing to the elements and this will eventually cause the bushing to fail. While the rubber bushing that connects the arm to the chassis seems to last longer, you will have the arm off so you may want to go a head and replace it anyway.

Begin by safely raising and supporting your car off the ground. Please see our article on safely jacking up and supporting your W124 for more information. 

Remove the two 10mm bolts (red arrows) and the two clips (yellow arrows) and the plastic control arm protective cover.
Figure 1

Remove the two 10mm bolts (red arrows) and the two clips (yellow arrows) and the plastic control arm protective cover.

These are the four nuts and bolts you will need to remove in order to perform this job: control arm to wheel carrier (green arrow), drop link (yellow arrow) and shock (red arrows).
Figure 2

These are the four nuts and bolts you will need to remove in order to perform this job: control arm to wheel carrier (green arrow), drop link (yellow arrow) and shock (red arrows).

Remove the 17mm bolts attaching the shock to the control arm (red arrow) and slightly lift the control arm to slide the bolts out.
Figure 3

Remove the 17mm bolts attaching the shock to the control arm (red arrow) and slightly lift the control arm to slide the bolts out.

Remove the 13mm nut from the drop link (red arrow), slightly raise the control arm and remove the bolt.
Figure 4

Remove the 13mm nut from the drop link (red arrow), slightly raise the control arm and remove the bolt.

I highly recommend you use the spring compressor tool BM-924-0231 for Mercedes-Benz.
Figure 5

I highly recommend you use the spring compressor tool BM-924-0231 for Mercedes-Benz. Use of a different tool can cause damage to both you and the vehicle. Warning: Never use air impact tools on the Mercedes style spring compressor.

Place the upper disc as high as you can get it in the springs (red arrows).
Figure 6

Place the upper disc as high as you can get it in the springs (red arrows).

Place the lower spring as low as it will go (red arrow).
Figure 7

Place the lower spring as low as it will go (red arrow).

Insert the compressor strut through the hole in the lower control arm and feed it through the plates.
Figure 8

Insert the compressor strut through the hole in the lower control arm and feed it through the plates. Rotate the strut so it locks into the tabs on the upper plate. Attach your 19mm socket and start tightening. The springs will compress while tightening.

Using two 19mm sockets remove the nut holding the control arm to chassis but do not remove the bolt yet.
Figure 9

Using two 19mm sockets remove the nut holding the control arm to chassis but do not remove the bolt yet.

Do not remove the bolt yet (red arrow) as once the bolt is free you don not want the arm swinging down and dropping the spring on your head.
Figure 10

Do not remove the bolt yet (red arrow) as once the bolt is free you don not want the arm swinging down and dropping the spring on your head.

Remove the nut and bolt connecting the control arm to the wheel carrier.
Figure 11

Remove the nut and bolt connecting the control arm to the wheel carrier. Hold the control arm in place while removing the bolt.

While holding the spring and control arm, carefully swing the arm down from the wheel carrier and remove the spring.
Figure 12

While holding the spring and control arm, carefully swing the arm down from the wheel carrier and remove the spring. Then remove the bolt connecting the arm to the chassis.

Remove the two 17mm bolts holding the caliper to the carrier and safely hang the caliper (red arrow), do not hang the caliper by the brake line! Using a 5mm Allen driver, remove the securing screw on the rotor.
Figure 13

Remove the two 17mm bolts holding the caliper to the carrier and safely hang the caliper (red arrow), do not hang the caliper by the brake line! Using a 5mm Allen driver, remove the securing screw on the rotor.

Pull the rotor off and you will see the parking brake assembly.
Figure 14

Pull the rotor off and you will see the parking brake assembly. You will be working with the shoes and the tensioner (yellow arrow), the retaining springs (green arrows) and the expander (red arrow).

Spin the axle flange so you can get access to one of the retaining springs.
Figure 15

Spin the axle flange so you can get access to one of the retaining springs.

Use a 7/16 socket, compress the retaining spring and turn it 90 degrees.
Figure 16

Use a 7/16" socket, compress the retaining spring and turn it 90 degrees. This will release the spring from its hole (red arrow) so you can remove it.

Remove one side of the lower spring by the separator (yellow arrows).
Figure 17

Remove one side of the lower spring by the separator (yellow arrows).

With the top spring and tensioner attached, pull the shoes apart so you can get them over the axle and remove.
Figure 18

With the top spring and tensioner attached, pull the shoes apart so you can get them over the axle and remove.

Remove the three Allen (Hex key) bolts holding the brake dust shield on.
Figure 19

Remove the three Allen (Hex key) bolts holding the brake dust shield on.

Spin the dust shield until you have access to the wheel carrier bushing.
Figure 20

Spin the dust shield until you have access to the wheel carrier bushing.

Here is a picture of the old bushing, you can see where the rubber seal is gone and all kinds of debris has gotten into the inner bearing (red arrow).
Figure 21

Here is a picture of the old bushing, you can see where the rubber seal is gone and all kinds of debris has gotten into the inner bearing (red arrow).

This is the bearing puller and installer tool.
Figure 22

This is the bearing puller and installer tool. It is easy to use, and walked the old bushing out in under two minutes.

Viola! A walk in the park with the right tool.
Figure 23

Viola! A walk in the park with the right tool.

This photo illustrates the old bushing (left side) and the new bushing.
Figure 24

This photo illustrates the old bushing (left side) and the new bushing. The new busing looks frosty because it was just pulled out of a freezer. Freezing the bushing before installation causes the metal to contract and makes the installation easier.

Using the same tool, install the new bearing until it is equal and flush in the knuckle.
Figure 25

Using the same tool, install the new bearing until it is equal and flush in the knuckle.

This photo illustrates how you can use a press to push out the old rubber bushing and install the new one.
Figure 26

This photo illustrates how you can use a press to push out the old rubber bushing and install the new one. I used the bearing puller tool as a base to support the arm and a series of sockets to remove and install the new bushing

Here is the old bushing out.
Figure 27

Here is the old bushing out. Put some dish soap on the rubber and the arm before installation. Don't forget to wear your safety glasses. Installation is the reverse of removal.






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Comments and Suggestions:
Jens Comments: Hi,
I am performing the same procedure on my W210 1997 E420and ordered the inner and outer rear control arm bushings from you 202-352-01-65-M69; 204-352-00-27-M36
You mention and show a Mercedes bearing puller and installer tool on the knuckle assembly end: what exact tool would I need for my W210, please? Thank you.

Best,
Jens
March 27, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: I don't know the tool number, it looks like a rear ball joint / bushing tool. Give our parts specialists a call at 1-888-280-7799, they can get you one. - Nick at Pelican Parts  

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