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About my Rear End

This is a discussion on About my Rear End within the Suspension and Handling forums, part of the General Help category; Hey guys, I was hoping to get some details about the rear end of my 98 trans am, Last year ...

  1. #1
    Member smkn gts's Avatar
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    red
    1998 Pontiac Trans Am

    About my Rear End

    Hey guys, I was hoping to get some details about the rear end of my 98 trans am,

    Last year i bought bf goodrich radial t/a 295/50/16 but this summer i bought good rich g force all the way around 275/40/17. With the radials the rear end seemed to take bumps and pot holes rather hard which made for a very uncomfortable drive, could it just be the extra large tires cause the ride to be rough. Or should i look into replacing the shocks or springs or whatever it is i need to replace?

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    How many miles on the car? The decrease in sidewall will generally adversely affect the ride of your car. We have 275/40-17's on ours, but I really do not mind how it rides on rough roads. It wouldn't hurt to look things over underneath. You can also disconnect the shock from the axle and see how it feels and check to see if it is leaking. Also look at your suspension bushings to make sure that they are not deteriorated or malformed from age. Is the car lowered?

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    Member smkn gts's Avatar
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    red
    1998 Pontiac Trans Am

    no the car is basically stock with 94k miles. The entire front suspension with rack and pinion were replaced last summer. A few shops around here only want 150 to replace the rear shocks but as for the suspension im curious, sounds like it will be expensive considering i already spent 3k on the car for this summer

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    Quote Originally Posted by smkn gts View Post
    no the car is basically stock with 94k miles. The entire front suspension with rack and pinion were replaced last summer. A few shops around here only want 150 to replace the rear shocks but as for the suspension im curious, sounds like it will be expensive considering i already spent 3k on the car for this summer

    Rear shock replacement is real easy to do. You may want to look it over and attempt this one on your own or with the help of a friend.

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    Member smkn gts's Avatar
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    red
    1998 Pontiac Trans Am

    all i have to do is loosen the top bolt and lift the car when im done to pull the shock correct? I know its a little more complicated than that but if the shop only wants 80 in labor i can imagine it being very hard. Im just concerned with the rough ride but i know it has something to do with the huge tires on the back

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    King 0f n00bz shady milkman's Avatar
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    blacker than wesleysnipes
    98' trans am

    Quote Originally Posted by smkn gts View Post
    all i have to do is loosen the top bolt and lift the car when im done to pull the shock correct? I know its a little more complicated than that but if the shop only wants 80 in labor i can imagine it being very hard. Im just concerned with the rough ride but i know it has something to do with the huge tires on the back
    huge tires or not ..i believe it has more to do with what is between the tires and your car. i am planning on installing my koni and strano springs with my pandhard bar, this week or next. where in michigan are you ? and if you need some help and it is not far, i dont see why i couldnt help you.

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    Member smkn gts's Avatar
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    red
    1998 Pontiac Trans Am

    I live in wayne michigan but its quite a distance from you. I was planning to install shocks maybe around the same time i change all 4 of my brake pads and rotors. I have so much i want to get done but i dont got a lot of time between when this damn snow melts and when i need the car to be all pretty for this summer =)

    I think springs is what i need to replace along with my shocks but i am no sure where to begin. =/ Sounds like another mess.. This car is going to be alot of work this spring thats for damn sure

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    King 0f n00bz shady milkman's Avatar
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    blacker than wesleysnipes
    98' trans am

    well it all depends on this one thing really. do you want to lower your car or run it at stock height ??

    if you want it lowered..that is where it becomes a mess. koni's are the best and they are very pricey ..but there is non better at handling and controlling the lowering springs for a good ride quality. if staying stock height, then stock springs and blistens (sp), or konis will work really well.

    also dont forget, if you lower your car, a adj panhard bar is a must.

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    Member smkn gts's Avatar
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    red
    1998 Pontiac Trans Am

    i do not need to lower the car, even though it is appealing i feel no real need for it, plus i probably cant afford it because of how much i have already spent with wheels and tires, exhaust, tint, brake pads and rotors, intake and what not for this summer... Do you think i would need to replace the shocks or would it be better to replace the springs and see if that works first?

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    O U 8 1 2 Spaz's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by smkn gts View Post
    all i have to do is loosen the top bolt and lift the car when im done to pull the shock correct? I know its a little more complicated than that but if the shop only wants 80 in labor i can imagine it being very hard. Im just concerned with the rough ride but i know it has something to do with the huge tires on the back
    it's very easy... just lower the rear seat and press down on the carpet behind the seat to find the sweet spot... take a blade and cut the carpet so you can pull it aside to unbolt the top of the shock...

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    Member smkn gts's Avatar
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    red
    1998 Pontiac Trans Am

    spaz that is to replace the spring am i correct? How many hours labor do you think it would take to replace my rear springs and shocks? I dont know much about my car but im willing to give it a shot to save some cash since i spent so much already.

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    King 0f n00bz shady milkman's Avatar
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    wait what wheels do you have on now ? i am seeing 295s/16s ..but also 275/17s...anywho decarbons are god aweful..they should be changed no matter the mileage or age of the car..however in your case as is with mine..our cars are 12 years old. they should be changed anyways...i would personally change the shocks before the spring..i almost guarantee that you will be satisfied..on top of that, changing the bushings on your suspension parts should also be looked into. I took the view of, since the needed to be changed, why not just upgrade the whole suspension component instead of just the bushings etc.

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    Unless the car is sagging in the ass end, it's probably not the springs that need replaced. You can "bounce test" your shocks real easy. Open your hatch and place your hands on something sturdy, like the lip. Lunge downward and watch what the car does. It should bounce once and immediately settle if the shocks are good. If it bounces more than that, or one side is harder to compress than the other, then you have definite shock issues, barring something broken in the suspension.

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    Member smkn gts's Avatar
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    red
    1998 Pontiac Trans Am

    Shady.. I have been driving the car with the 295s but the drive had been rather rough so this summer i am putting on the 275s which are lighter but i am also planning to replace the brakes so i figured why not replace the rear springs and shocks since the front end has been completely redone and feels like new!

    Pajeff i have heard of the bounce test and my car fails! the shocks will definitely need to be replaced, i just called and the shop by my house only wants 120 for labor plus however much the parts are! That seems cheap to have it done professionally

    New things keep piling onto my list.. its so easy to go broke just with the simplest of mods to these cars!!!

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    What brand shocks are you having installed?

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    1998 Pontiac Trans Am

    I have no idea.. probably pretty basic shocks because the car isnt making much power and i just dont have the cash to spare at the moment.. well atleast i dont want to spend much more.. but only god knows whats going to happen once i start working on the car this spring!

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    Life In The Fast Lane..!! redracer1's Avatar
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    The rear shock/spring are very easy to replace.

    1) Block the front tires.
    2) Jack up and support the rear of the car with two jack stands on the frame rails not the rear diff.
    3) Remove both rear tires.
    4) Support rear diff with a floor jack in the center.
    5) Unbolt upper shock bolt.
    6) Unbolt lower shock bolt and remove shocks.
    7) Install new shocks at the upper mount and let them hang loose.
    8) Lower the rear diff using the floor jack low enough to remove springs. There's nothing holding them there but the weight of the car. Just grap em and pull them out.
    9) Place the smaller end of the springs on the diff mount and slowly jack the diff back up. Using a light make sure the upper springs are seated properly.
    10) Bolt the lower shock back up...Done..!!

  18. #18
    Member smkn gts's Avatar
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    Thanks redracer.. i will definately give it a shot exactly like you said! I figure ill save myself the money and i will have help working on it i just want to make sure i do it right the first time!

  19. #19
    Life In The Fast Lane..!! redracer1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by smkn gts View Post
    Thanks redracer.. i will definately give it a shot exactly like you said! I figure ill save myself the money and i will have help working on it i just want to make sure i do it right the first time!
    Glad I could help....did you decide on a brand of shocks?

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