Installing coilovers on your car is relatively simple as long as you have a basic set of socket wrenches, a jack and some stands. For the purposes of this article were working on our 350Z and were installing a set of MAX Pro Coilovers beginning with the fronts first.
If you have a strut tower brace begin by removing this piece first and setting it aside. There should be 4 bolts holding each side in place (only 3 pictured), once the bolts are removed the brace will wriggle free.
At this point you will need to get your car up in the air. Go ahead and get the two front wheels both off the ground or the two rear wheels off the ground. If you only do one wheel in the air at a time the sway bars will have plenty of kinetic energy stored in them from the twist placed on the chassis, so it’s a good idea to raise both wheels simultaneously. Remove your wheels and set your lug nuts in a safe place. Next remove the brake line hoses from the old coilover where necessary and let them dangle freely. Keep any hardware you remove in order to reapply them when putting the new coilover back on.
Now use 2 breaker bars and crack the seal on the rear lower control arm bolt. If your having a difficult time spray a little lubricant on the bolt and let it sit for a few minutes. Do the same to the lower coilover bolt and let it sit there while you loosen the sway bar tie rod bolts. Once all bolts are loose you can remove them all and the lower control arm should drop down. Now unbolt the top 3 bolts that hold the coilover in place on the top mount and the whole coilover assembly should be free and removed without issue.
Begin installing the new coilover by seating the top mount with the 3 bolts, new hardware should be provided with your kit but if not you can always recycle your old bolts. Installation of the new unit is done in the exact opposite order of how you removed the old coilover.
You may need to use a little muscle or perhaps even the jack stand to raise the lower control arm back into place to secure the front and rear pins. Tighten everything snugly back in place or if you have a torque wrench you could look up the ft/lb for each bolt, but we just used good judgement. Do the other front side the same and then start to measure for your front ride height. The gap between the upper and lower cylinder ring locks determines the ride height for your car. The greater the gap the higher up your car will sit, so in order to eliminate wheel gap reduce the distance between the ring locks.
Make sure the spring is secured snugly but it should not be so tight that you cannot rotate it with your hands as this will effect the spring rate and the ride height. Be sure to tap the lower cylinder ring lock in place with a flat head screw driver and a hammer to secure the springs lower mount. Once the top rings are locked in place you can loosen the very bottom cylinder ring lock and begin to turn the entire upper assembly clockwise into the base of the coilover. This will effectively lower your car in order to raise your car turn the upper assembly counter clockwise with the kits provided torque key. All spring rates are different and rest a little different under load so it is a good idea to just do trial and error when setting your ride height.
Moving on to the rear of the car begin by placing a jack stand beneath the rear spring bucket and using 2 breaker bars crack the seal on the rear bolt. Remove the pin and gently lower the jack stand, the spring should now be loose and removed along with the rubber inserts that the spring rests on. Remove the lower strut tower pin and loosen the two upper bolts and remove the rear strut. Replace with the true coilover and using the jack stand lift the rear disc assembly along with the spring bucket back into position to secure the spring bucket rear bolt and lower coilover bolt. Set your preferred ride height the same as you did on your front coilovers. Re-install your front strut tower brace and now your done, go take it for a test drive and test to see if your alignment needs re-adjusting.