Vehicle pulls to the right Strut replacement?

Tiny
G CHRIS
  • MEMBER
  • 2005 CHRYSLER PACIFICA
  • 3.5L
  • 6 CYL
  • 2WD
  • AUTOMATIC
  • 170,000 MILES
During even slight acceleration the front end of my vehicle pulls to the right with a very unstable feeling. The harder the acceleration the harder the pull. While troubleshooting I noticed the struts center mount nut on the driver side was loose. I began to tighten it but it actually never did get tight. Is there a limit to how far I can continue to tighten this nut? Is something broken and that's the reason it won't tighten?
I look forward to your reply.
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Sunday, November 29th, 2020 AT 6:38 PM

5 Replies

Tiny
CARADIODOC
  • EXPERT
There's two things to consider. The first is if the upper strut mount has collapsed, (deteriorated), the nut will hit the step on the top of the strut's shaft, and never clamp to the mount.

The better suspect is when you're trying to tighten the nut, the strut's shaft is turning at the same time, so you're not really accomplishing anything. This even applies to installing new struts. I get the nuts tight by snapping them with pulses from a 1/2"-drive impact wrench, but you have to be careful to not spin the shaft too much as it could overheat and take out the rubber seal at the top of the strut's body. The alternative is to use a box wrench to turn the nut, and a hex wrench to hold the shaft. Those shafts usually have a hole for an Allen wrench on top for that purpose. Sometimes you'll find a smaller hex on top for a smaller box wrench to hold the shaft while you use the bigger one to turn the nut.

Even though that nut might be loose, it seems you're describing way too much "torque steer" to attribute it to that. In fact, if the upper mount is not worn, I'm suspicious tightening the nut isn't going to help. I'd rather expect to find a worn tie rod end or a tire pull problem. A good way to identify a tire pull is to observe the vehicle will pull to the left under moderate to hard braking. If you switch the front tires side-to-side, the vehicle will either pull to the left now when accelerating, or it will have no noticeable pull. If it pulls to the left now, and the tires are not worn enough to justify replacing them, switch them front-to-rear and leave them there. Tires rarely cause a pull when they're on the rear.
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Sunday, November 29th, 2020 AT 6:58 PM
Tiny
G CHRIS
  • MEMBER
Many thanks for your insight. I will try the suggestions as described.
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Sunday, November 29th, 2020 AT 8:05 PM
Tiny
ASEMASTER6371
  • EXPERT
Good morning,

There is a torque value for the nut that holds the sturt. I attached it here. If you cannot get this torque, you will need to replace the strut.

https://www.2carpros.com/articles/replace-shock-absorber

Install Strut Nut Wrench (on end of a torque wrench), Special Tool 6864, on strut shaft retaining nut (Fig. 30). Next, install a 10 mm socket onto hex on end of strut shaft. While holding strut shaft from turning, tighten strut shaft retaining nut to a torque of 115 Nm (85 ft. lbs.).

Please let us know if you have any other questions.

Roy

STRUT ASSEMBLY

REMOVAL

Warning: do not remove nut from strut rod while strut assembly is installed in vehicle or before strut assembly spring is compressed.

1. Raise and support vehicle.
2. Remove wheel and tire assembly.
3. If both strut assemblies are to be removed, mark strut assemblies right or left according to which side of vehicle they were removed from.

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4. Remove screw fastening wheel speed sensor routing bracket to strut assembly (Fig. 24).

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CAUTION: When removing nut from stud of stabilizer bar link, do not allow stud to rotate in it's socket. Hold stud from rotating by placing an open-end wrench on flat machined into stud (Fig. 25).

5. Remove stabilizer bar link from bracket on strut assembly (Fig. 25). To do so, place an open-end wrench on flat machined into link's mounting stud, then remove nut while holding wrench in place. Push stud out of bracket.

CAUTION: The steering knuckle to strut assembly attaching bolts are serrated and must not be turned during removal. Remove nuts while holding bolts stationary in steering knuckles.

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6. Remove two bolts and nuts attaching strut clevis to steering knuckle (Fig. 26) (Fig. 27).
7. If servicing left strut assembly, remove nuts fastening coolant recovery bottle in place and reposition bottle with hoses attached out of way.

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8. Remove three nuts attaching strut assembly upper mount to strut tower (Fig. 28), then remove strut assembly from vehicle.
9. To disassemble strut assembly, Refer to STRUT - DISASSEMBLY.

DISASSEMBLY
The strut assembly must be removed from vehicle for it to be disassembled and assembled.
For disassembly and assembly of strut assembly, use of Strut Spring Compressor, Pentastar Service Equipment (PSE) tool W-7200, or equivalent, is recommended to compress coil spring. Follow manufacturer's instructions closely.

WARNING: DO NOT REMOVE STRUT SHAFT NUT BEFORE COIL SPRING IS COMPRESSED. COIL SPRING IS HELD UNDER PRESSURE AND MUST BE COMPRESSED, REMOVING SPRING TENSION FROM UPPER MOUNT AND PIVOT BEARING, BEFORE SHAFT NUT IS REMOVED.

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1. Position strut assembly in strut coil spring compressor following manufacturers instructions (Fig. 29). Position lower hooks on coil spring first, then uppers.
2. Compress coil spring until all coil spring tension is removed from upper mount.
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Monday, November 30th, 2020 AT 3:25 AM
Tiny
G CHRIS
  • MEMBER
Thank you for this important information.
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Monday, November 30th, 2020 AT 9:41 AM
Tiny
ASEMASTER6371
  • EXPERT
You are welcome.

Always glad to help.

Roy
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Monday, November 30th, 2020 AT 11:15 AM

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