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Steering, Suspension & Drivetrain Questions about your steering, suspension, axles, and/or transfer case? Post up here.

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Old 08-07-2017, 06:32 PM
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Default Weird suspension issue

I recently bought an '03 Blazer and immediately noticed the front-end was a bit loose, and the suspension seemed soft.

So I took it to my mechanic, and as a result all four ball joints were changed, the left inner CV boot was changed, and it had a wheel alignment.

With that work, the front end tightened up, but the suspension issue remained, so I personally changed the front shocks and the front sway bar links.

Nothing changed.

How to describe it? At highway speeds, when hitting a bump, particularly when the road curves to the right, it feels like it wants to take off, even though all four wheels stay on the road. It's basically just super bouncy.

So I personally changed the rear shocks too, but nothing changed.

I had my dad (former mechanic) test drive it, and he suggested something that seemed right. He said it felt like something was loose in the rear end, like one of the leaf springs was broken or a spring connection was loose. He likened it to what it feels like when you're pulling a trailer. That was a pretty accurate description.

So my mechanic took it for a drive, agreed with my dad's suggestion, and had a close look at rear suspension, but found nothing awry. So with my consent he upgraded the already-new rear shocks to something significantly more robust, changed changed the rear sway bar links, and fixed a leaky tire.

Still, nothing has changed. I've dropped about $2,000 into trying to get this issue fixed, and although work has been done that was necessary, none of it is hitting the original problem.

Some have suggested I might just need to change my tires, but that's tough to believe since they appear to have a lot of wear left on them and aren't in rough shape.

So, to recap, all four ball joints are changed, all four shocks are changed, the left inner CV boot is changed, all four sway bar links are changed... I'm out of ideas.

After that long-winded run-down, does anyone have any suggestions?
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Old 08-07-2017, 07:49 PM
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does the front sag any? Your traction bars may have stretched some. if so you can crank them a bit but then you may need another alignment
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Old 08-08-2017, 04:57 PM
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I'd almost wonder the other direction: If the torsion bars have been cranked up for a cheap suspension lift, there may be excessive travel when hitting bumps at highway speeds. That coupled with soft old torsion bars could result in it being quite bouncy.
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Old 08-08-2017, 06:11 PM
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Thanks for the replies. Full disclosure: I'm pretty amateur, so forgive me if I sound like an idiot. Are the torsion bars the same as the sway/stabilizer bars? When I replaced the sway bar linkages in the front, I asked my dad and his brother, who is also a former mechanic, if I was supposed to crank the nut all the way possible and squish down the rubber bushings. They both said yes, so I did. Were they wrong? Is it possible I tightened the linkages too much? My mechanic did the rears, so I'm assuming those are done correctly, but since I did the fronts, I'm not going to assume the same.
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Old 08-08-2017, 06:21 PM
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Torsion bars are on the other side, under the seat on the outside, one on each side. the bolt to stiffen them is athe end of lond bars. one full turn clockwise will lift the front a 1/4 inch and also change the camber of the alignment a bit. dont go to much. Do a full turn and drive to see if its stiffer. You can always turn it back
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Old 08-09-2017, 08:58 AM
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The torsion bars are the front springs used on 4x4 models of many trucks. Rather than a compression spring like traditional coil or leaf springs, they use twist or torsion to hold up the truck. Like Newguy said, there is one torsion for each side. The front of the torsion bar is hex shaped and plugs into the lower control arm. The rear of the torsion bar attaches to a crossmember between the frame.


At the rear of the torsion bar is a "key", and that is where you can find the adjustor bolt that Newguy is talking about. Turning the adjustor bolt further in will lift the front suspension higher, and turning the bolt out will lower the front suspension. Any adjustment of this bolt will change the dynamic of your front suspension and steering components and you should get a new steering alignment.
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Old 08-10-2017, 12:46 AM
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Does the OP even have a 4X4???
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Old 08-12-2017, 06:41 PM
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Yes, it's a 4x4. I found the torsion bars, but before I adjust them, I measured the ground-to-wheel-well (same way the guy in this video measured:
) distance on level ground and discovered the driver side sits about half an inch higher than the passenger side. The driver side is at 31.75", the passenger is at 31.25". I'm going to try equalizing them before anything else, but does anyone know what that height should be. I'm on P235/75R15 tires. I haven't been able to locate any specs that spell this out in black-and-white.
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Old 08-12-2017, 08:44 PM
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Basically the cv axles should be level
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Old 08-12-2017, 11:11 PM
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So I dropped both torsion bars 1.5 turns, and it dropped the front by half an inch on the the driver side (down to 31.25") and a quarter inch on the other (down to 31"). The CV axles weren't level before I started (not even close), and they weren't level after the 1.5 turns, although they were visibly closer to level than before. FWIW, the passenger side turned a lot easier than the driver side.

The test drive went well; I definitely noticed an improvement in the ride, so I think we're on the right track.

But I don't think I'm done yet. I feel like I should drop the torsion bars another 1.5 turns each, but I'm hesitant to do more without a realignment booked. How far is too far? How much is too much?
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