How to Replace the Rear Struts on a 1998 Toyota Camry

Written by lee sallings
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How to Replace the Rear Struts on a 1998 Toyota Camry
(Zedcor Wholly Owned/ Images)

The rear struts on your 1998 Toyota Camry are designed to absorb impacts caused by debris and imperfections in the road surface. Oil in the strut is forced through small holes in the strut piston, attached to the end of the strut shaft, and the energy of the impact is absorbed. Replacing the struts on the rear of your Camry will restore lost control and ride quality caused by loss of the oil in the strut or internal wear.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • Wheel chocks
  • Floor jack
  • Jack stands
  • Socket set
  • Wrench set
  • Hammer

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  1. 1

    Remove the rear seat bottom by lifting the front edge of the cushion until it unsnaps from the three retainers, and then removing the 13mm retaining bolt found along the rear edge of the seat cushion. Lift the cushion and remove it from the car. Pull the release tabs on the seat back and lower the two seat backs. Remove the 13mm retaining bolts and slide the seat backs from the car.

  2. 2

    Remove the three plastic push pins that retain the front edge of the package shelf. Remove the high mount brake light assembly by pushing the retaining clips from inside the boot, and lift the assembly out from inside the car.

  3. 3

    Loosen the lug nuts on the rear wheels, using the lug wrench. Raise the rear of the vehicle using the floor jack, and position jack stands under the rear subframe. Lower the car onto the stands and remove the jack. Remove the rear wheels.

  4. 4

    Disconnect the ABS sensor wiring harness from the strut and remove the brake hose bracket from the strut using a 10mm wrench to remove the retaining bolt..

  5. 5

    Unbolt the sway bar link from the bracket on the strut tube. Place a floor jack under the rear axle carrier to support the weight of the carrier and suspension, and remove the two lower strut mounting bolts using an 18mm socket and ratchet. Remove the three 14mm upper strut mounting nuts from inside the car, using a 14mm wrench, and slip the strut from the fender well.

  6. 6

    Take the old strut assembly to your favourite auto parts store or repair shop and have the new strut installed in the assembly. This requires the use of special equipment and should be done by a professional to avoid serious injury.

  7. 7

    Install the new strut assembly into the fender well, and tighten the upper strut mounting nuts by hand. Slip the strut onto the rear axle carrier and install the bolts. Remove the floor jack and tighten the upper and lower strut bolts securely. Attach the brake hose, sway bar link, and ABS wiring harness to the new strut. Repeat the procedure for the remaining side.

  8. 8

    Reinstall the wheels and lower the car to the ground. Reinstall the package shelf and rear seats. Test drive to verify that the installation is complete.

Tips and warnings

  • Never remove the centre bolt in the upper strut mount. This will result in sudden coil spring decompression that can cause serious injury or vehicle damage.

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