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DIY : Honda Civic 1987-2000 Main Rear Trailing Arm Bushing Replacement

Posted on Wednesday, December 5th, 2012 at 7:56 am

So, this is time for ‘big buddy’, main rear trailing arm bushing, stress by stress, time by time, he need retirement…

Long time ago, Honda doesn’t supply trailing arm bushing separately, they sell entirely trailing arm set! When need to replace? Should check it after 50 000km, but it depend on how you handle your car, modification and the road condition. These bushings are responsible for rear stability, so make sure it always takes a good responsible!

DISCLAIMER: I can not say this is the best or safest way to do. I am not
responsible for any thing you damage, or what ever harm you cause to
yourself or others. This is how I did it and it worked for me.

Some prefer to use Honda/Acura trailing arm bushing removal/extractor (refer the picture below), the benefits is, only need to remove several bolts and you can remove and replace the bushing with the trailing arm still in the car, save your time, the con is, this special tool is a little bit expensive and you need to wait for a long time to use this secret weapon again, except you are full-time car mechanic. And other extremely technique is, to used hammer! I witness this on YouTube. But I prefer to remove entirely trailing arm and take to the machine shop to press the bush.

This schematic take from service manual show where exactly the trailing arm doing the job, the biggest and most powerful arm! Show also the torque spec.

Honestly, this maintenance is very easy and straight forward job, our mission is to remove/deattach anything that connects/attach the trailing arm to the body, necessary only, take the first step, remove the caliper shield.

And next is to remove the parking brake cable, remove the lock pin, clevis pin and clip.

Next step is to remove the brake caliper, only two caliper bracket bolts (orange circle), that all.

Remove any bolt that attach brake hose at the trailing arm.

Remove the compensator arm, one side bolt only…I remove bolt that connect compensator arm to the body, yeah, this is sure will mess with the toe alignment, but it more easier to remove, because the are lot of work space for me. Just do the marking point.

Then, remove the upper arm self-locking bolt.

Remove the trailing arm bushing bolts.

Toing! Remove parking brake cable bolt that attaches to the trailing arm.

And lastly, remove the lower arm self-locking bolt. Easy and straight forward right? Like my texts.

Men shopping time! I recommend you to measure your original old bushing diameter, there are two type of diameter for OEM Honda,

The small diameter bushing is part number 52385-SR3-000. It’s outside diameter is 3.170 inches (80.52mm)

The large diameter bushing is part number 52385-SK7-N02. It’s outside diameter is 3.352 inches (85.14mm)

Goodbye old buddy, take a deep rest, please don’t show your sadness face to me.

The complete trailing arm set.

The oldest one is more thick than the new one, I wonder why Honda reduce it size. From physically and design, the old one look like more rigid and will not allow minor movement, the new one is more flexibility and maybe didn’t keep hard stress and more comfort riding, maybe less for duration and durability, who’s know? There is one another  important factor to consider, the material it self. So, time will speak…

But, there a are another option, aftermarket part! This text I copy from my previous post –> There are many topic people around the world discuss about bushing, but what take my attention is, which one material is better, OEM rubber or aftermarket polyurethane (PU)? For my opinion, each other have their own advantage and disadvantage, polyurethane will give extremely durable, maintain steering geometry, enhance handling & ride characteristic and many more than stock rubber, but it will cost you twice or tree! Two friend of mine change fully bushing to polyurethane and they say there is no problem, the only problem is price,  I also read about people experience with  PU, almost say, it’s too hard for daily driving or family car, and sometime make squeaking noise, and have to re-grease with special grease, there are many brand out there, my friend recommend me Superpro bushing, I also read people choose hard rubber than poly and OEM rubber, for me OEM rubber bush is always fine,  it depend on what your car for, mine is only for daily and street driving, so, I will stick with OEM rubber bush.<– End of copy

Also, you have to consider, about total motion that a suspension has to move through!

Before pressing, measure and remember the correct position (which side is above and below) of the old one. Some prefer to mark when the arm still in the car, on the wheels and sitting on the ground if you lowered the car, to prevent constant pre-load twist that could lead to early breakage because of the bush will twist a little degree from the standard setting, that the great point, but for me, I need to consider about my coilover, how much I lowered my car, road condition (bump and crack), the passengers, the motion of cornering and the bush design it self to handle all the motion, because it dynamically, so I will stick with the natural position.

This is the great chance if you want to replace the compensator arm.

After installing the new one.

Reassembly all back together using reverse step, install the compensator arm bolts close the the the original position (toe adjustment), but, I highly recommend you to do wheel alignment, because wear bush alignment of cause not to match the new one. This procedure also could be use to converted from drum brake to disk brake, just replace the hand brake cable.

After test drive : Improve hard braking, cornering and can handle bumping road better.

I snap this picture after I do alignment and run for 100km, while the car still on the wheels, sitting on the ground and no driver or passenger load, just want to check the position of my trailing arm bush.

The result, almost the same position when the trailing arm still hanging.

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3 Responses to “DIY : Honda Civic 1987-2000 Main Rear Trailing Arm Bushing Replacement”

  1. vtec1232 says:

    a question..is it ok if i use a pair of thailand made trailing arm for my ej7?

  2. Raz says:

    It’s ok, almost Honda OEM spare parts come from the Thailand (Thailand also Honda manufacturing center for Asian and Australasian market), some product originally come from the Thailand even the packaging showed ‘Make in Japan’! But be careful, some Honda OEM spare parts product take from the others brand/manufacture, just change the packaging and double it price…from my experience…

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