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How to Replace the Rear Shocks and Springs on a '04'–'10 Toyota Sienna (With Video)

Hardlymoving writes about do-it-yourself automobile maintenance on various makes and models.

This article, with video, will show you step-by-step how to replace both the rear shock absorbers and suspension springs on a '04 Toyota Sienna with over 200k miles.

My customer had been complaining that the ride quality was poor when he took slow sharp turns and that the rear end bounced and shimmied.

The rear shock absorbers had been replaced at 100k miles with Monroe's OE Spectrum shocks. How do I know? I was the one that replaced them six years ago. The then-owner bought this minivan with 100k miles and had me service it the whole time. When it was approaching 200k miles, his wife wanted to trade up for something newer and nicer. They eventually settled on a 2014 Acura MDX with all the bells and whistles.

Now the new owner of the Sienna was itching to have me do some maintenance on his newly acquired minivan. I told him everything was fine—I had been doing all the necessary maintenance. But after a few weeks, he began complaining about his rear suspension. I couldn't argue, because he did have a point. The rear suspension did seem a little worn and due for new shocks and springs.

No special tools are required to perform this service. You'll need two jack stands, a hydraulic jack, and a basic automotive tool set with box wrenches, Torx, and hex sockets.

I purchased MOOG brand suspension springs to use as replacements. They came with a lifetime warranty.

The videos below, with text instructions, will show you step-by-step how to replace the rear suspension springs and shock absorbers on a Toyota Sienna.

1. Remove the Upper Shock Absorber Stem Nuts and Bushings

  • Remove the plastic service covers (in front of lower portion of the rear speakers) using a pick or pry tool.
  • Using a box wrench, remove the shock stem nut. If the stem rotates with the nut, determine what tool is needed to hold the stem from moving (either a hex or Torx socket attached to a socket wrench) and work off the stem nut.
  • Remove the bushing washer and bushing with the nut.
  • Repeat the above procedure for the other shock absorber.

2. Unbolt and Remove the Shock Absorber from the Control Arm

  • Remove the nut and washer that holds the shock absorber to the control arm.
  • Pull the shock absorber off the control arm stud.
  • Repeat procedure for the other shock absorber.
  • Detach the ABS bracket from the wheel well.

3. Remove the Suspension Spring and Transfer the Upper Spring Seat

  • Using a pry bar tool, position the pry bar under the lowest portion of the spring and push up on the spring while pulling on the spring with your other hand.
  • Repeat procedure for the other spring.
  • Transfer the upper spring seat to the new suspension spring.

4. Install the New Suspension Spring

  • While pushing down on the control arm, position the new spring where the end of the spring coil is seated into the control arm's spring seat groove. You may have to rotate the spring with both hands to seat the spring into the groove.
  • Repeat the procedure for the other spring.

5. Mount the New Shock Absorber into the Chassis

  • Install the new shock absorber upper bushing washer and bushing. Push the shock absorber stem into the chassis hole for the shock.
  • From inside the rear cabin, install the new upper bushing, bushing washer, and nut onto the shock absorber stem. Tighten the nut and prevent the shaft from moving with either a Torx or hex socket (depending on the replacement shock absorber you purchased).
  • Repeat the above procedure for the other side.

6. Connect and Bolt On the New Shock Absorber to the Control Arm

  • Position the hydraulic jack under the control arm and raise the control arm until the shock absorber mounting stud is in line with the lower shock absorber hole.
  • Push the lower shock absorber onto the control arm's mounting stud, install the shock absorber washer, and screw on then torque down the stud nut.
  • Repeat the above procedure for the other shock absorber.
  • Bolt the ABS bracket onto the wheel well.
  • Re-install the upper shock absorber's service port covers.

This article is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge. Content is for informational or entertainment purposes only and does not substitute for personal counsel or professional advice in business, financial, legal, or technical matters.

Questions & Answers

Question: If you were just making these repairs on the rear shock and springs, How long would it take you?

Answer: For me, arount 1.5 - 2.0 hours.

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