Rear end swaying

Tiny
JOHNBOY05
  • MEMBER
  • 2005 FORD FOCUS
  • 0.5L
  • 4 CYL
  • 2WD
  • AUTOMATIC
  • 167,000 MILES
I recently bought this car. Sometimes the rear end will start to sway, not sure why there is no knocking or noise coming from it. I checked the sway bars also.
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Sunday, February 17th, 2019 AT 11:49 PM

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Tiny
JACOBANDNICKOLAS
  • EXPERT
Hi and thanks for using 2CarPros.

That is odd. Since you already checked the sway bar and bushings, I would suggest inspecting the tires, lift the vehicle and confirm there is no play in bearings or any of the bushings. Make sure the rear shocks are not worn. I attached a picture showing all the components related to the rear suspension. Take a look through it.

One other thought. The rear can be aligned. There is a chance it is bad or even the tire pressure is excessively low.

I feel these are the things that should be inspected first. Also, if you could let me know exactly what is happening and what causes the symptoms, it may help me.

Check these things and let me know what you find.

Joe
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Monday, February 18th, 2019 AT 5:39 PM
Tiny
JOHNBOY05
  • MEMBER
Thanks for getting back with me. I checked the tire pressure today the back driver side with a good bit lower than the rest. Got them all set to the same amount of pressure, but still has a sway in it. Mostly only happens when I hit a bump car go over a slightly uneven surface in the road. A wheel alignment was going to be my next go to thing. I know this is a little off from the swaying in the rear end but maybe you could help me with this also. Originally had to change the steering column on my car also and afterwards my horn no longer would work. So I went to AutoZone and got a horn button kit have everything hooked up down to the last step of installing it. Which is connecting my power wire and my ground wire to the horn itself under the hood. Which I'm not sure how to do because the horn originally what's connected with a adapter that pretty much just snapped on. So I'm not real sure as to how I'm supposed to connect my wires to the horn or as to where I should hook them at on the horn. Sorry if this is a bit of an overload. I recently bought the car and trying to get it legal but in order to do so it has to pass inspection because it was purchased out of state and it won't pass inspection with a horn not working. Thanks again for all your help. Look forward to hearing from you again.
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Monday, February 18th, 2019 AT 7:01 PM
Tiny
JACOBANDNICKOLAS
  • EXPERT
As far as the sway, specifically check components 2, 3, and 9 in the picture I attached. If the bushings are bad, it can cause a sway. You should lift the rear of the vehicle so the wheels are not touching, so place your jack either under the frame or on the pinch weld.

As far as the horn, I have to ask you to copy and paste it to a new thread. We try to keep all questions focused on the original heading. I will be on for awhile yet, so I will check for it. Sorry, about the inconvenience.

Joe
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Monday, February 18th, 2019 AT 7:35 PM
Tiny
JOHNBOY05
  • MEMBER
So I figured out today that my rear lower control arm bushing is no good. Is it possible to change just the bushing or would I need to purchase the whole control arm?
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Tuesday, February 19th, 2019 AT 5:27 PM
Tiny
JACOBANDNICKOLAS
  • EXPERT
Hi and welcome back:

Honestly, I don't believe the bushing itself is available. I just checked on line and you can get the entire arm with new bushings for just over 60 dollars. It was a nationally recognized parts store.

Now, the concern is this. To remove the lower control arm, you have to remove the coil spring which can be dangerous. Here are the directions to remove the coil. Be careful when doing this not to allow the coil the chance to spring out.

__________________________

SPRING
Spring

Spring
Picture 1

Removal

CAUTION: Suspension fasteners are critical parts because they affect performance of vital components and systems and their failure may result in major service expense. New parts must be installed with the same part numbers or equivalent part, if replacement is necessary. Do not use a replacement part of lesser quality or substitute design. Torque values must be used as specified during reassembly to make sure correct retention of these parts.

1. Remove the wheel and tire.
2. Remove the stabilizer bar nut and bushings, stabilizer bar links and spacers on both sides of the stabilizer bar.
3. Using a suitable jack, raise the rear lower arm 32 mm (1.25 inch).

Picture 2
4. WARNING: The coil spring is under extreme load. Care must be taken at all times when removing or installing a loaded spring. Failure to follow this instruction may result in serious personal injury.

Remove the rearward lower arm outboard bolt.
5. Lower the rear lower arm and remove the jack.

Picture 3

6. Remove the spring.
1 Position the stabilizer bar aside.
2 Lower the rear lower control arm and remove the spring.
- Inspect the spring upper and lower seats and, if necessary, install new.

Picture 4

Installation

1. CAUTION: Make sure the upper spring seat is installed, and the spring ends butt correctly against the upper and lower spring seats.

Install the upper spring seat onto the spring.

Picture 5

2. Install the spring.
1 Position the stabilizer bar aside.
2 Position the spring into the upper spring mount and position the lower arm.

Picture 6

3. CAUTION: Make sure the spring butts against the rear lower arm spring stop and is visible through the drain hole.

If necessary, rotate the spring clockwise until the spring-end butts against the rear lower arm spring stop.

Picture 7

4. WARNING: The coil spring is under extreme load. Care must be taken at all times when removing or installing a loaded spring. Failure to follow this instruction may result in serious personal injury.

NOTE: Do not tighten the rearward lower arm outboard bolt at this time.

Using a suitable jack, raise the rear lower arm and install the rearward lower arm outboard bolt.
Tighten until snug.
5. Position the stabilizer bar links and spacers and install the nut and bushings.
Tighten to 15 Nm (11 ft. Lbs.).
6. Install the wheel and tire.
7. Lower the vehicle until the weight of the vehicle is resting on the wheels and tires.
8. Tighten the rearward lower arm outboard bolt to 115 Nm (85 ft. Lbs.).

_________________________________________

Now there are two lower control arms on the rear. One is called the front and the other is the rear. Yes, both are on the rear of the vehicle. Here are the directions for replacing the front lower control arm on the rear of the vehicle.

See pic 8
Removal

CAUTION: Suspension fasteners are critical parts because they affect performance of vital components and systems and their failure may result in major service expense. New parts must be installed with the same part numbers or equivalent part, if replacement is necessary. Do not use a replacement part of lesser quality or substitute design. Torque values must be used as specified during reassembly to make sure correct retention of these parts.

1. Remove the wheel and tire.
2. Remove and discard the forward lower arm inboard bolt.
3. Remove the forward lower arm outboard bolt and the forward lower arm.
Discard the bolt.

Installation

1. NOTE: The forward lower arm is marked FRONT. Make a note of the position of the front lower arm to aid installation.

NOTE: Do not tighten the bolt at this time.

Position the front lower arm and loosely install the lower arm outboard bolt.

2. NOTE: Do not tighten the bolt at this time.

Loosely install the forward lower arm inboard bolt.
3. Install the wheel and tire.
4. Lower the vehicle until the weight of the vehicle is resting on the wheels and tires.
5. Tighten the forward lower arm inboard bolt to 115 Nm (85 ft. Lbs.).
6. Tighten the forward lower arm outboard bolt to 115 Nm (85 ft. Lbs.).

___________________________

If it is the rear control arm, make sure to mark the camber bolt so you can replace it in the same position and keep the present alignment. Regardless, it may be a good idea to have it aligned when this part is replaced.

Here are the directions. Again, use caution when removing the spring. The last two pictures correlate with these directions.

Lower Arm - Rear

Lower Arm - Rear

Picture 9

Removal

CAUTION: Suspension fasteners are critical parts because they affect performance of vital components and systems and their failure may result in major service expense. New parts must be installed with the same part numbers or equivalent part, if replacement is necessary. Do not use a replacement part of lesser quality or substitute design. Torque values must be used as specified during reassembly to make sure correct retention of these parts.

1. Mark the position of the rearward lower arm adjustment cam to the crossmember.

Picture 10

2. Remove the spring.
3. Remove the rearward lower arm-to-crossmember nut, cam adjuster, cam bolt and the lower arm.
Discard the rearward lower arm-to-crossmember nut.

Installation

1. NOTE: Align the mark on the rearward lower arm adjustment cam to the mark on the crossmember.

NOTE: Do not fully tighten the rearward lower arm-to-crossmember nut at this time.

Position the rearward lower arm and install the cam bolt, cam adjuster and nut.
Tighten the nut until snug.
2. Install the spring.

3. NOTE: Final tightening of the rearward lower arm-to-crossmember nut should be carried out with the suspension at curb height.

Tighten the rearward lower arm-to-crossmember nut to 90 Nm (66 ft. Lbs.).
4. Check and, if necessary, adjust the rear toe.

_____________________________________

Let me know if this helps.

Take care,
Joe
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Tuesday, February 19th, 2019 AT 5:53 PM

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