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Rear Shocks

Shallow Draft

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I am not sure about a gen 2. I would not think that there is to much difference between gen 1 to gen 2 at the rear of the truck. I have a gen 1 truck. When I changed my rear shocks, I removed an access plate and the hitch. That gave me plenty of room to work in. The biggest problem for me was the bolts holding the shocks. My best advice would be to soak the bolts with some good penetrating oil. The longer the better. Be careful of the top shock bolt. My 2 top bolts twisted off. That will start an all new problem. Also look at your air bags. My air bags had some serve weather checking. They also got changed out. I hope this helps. My truck is a factory single.


Good luck with your project,


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I just crawled out from under my 2009 mean machine.

Funny you ask about rear shocks.

I am in the process of changing all my shocks out.

I just did the rear right front axle

So yes you can do this yourself



penetrating oil

air tools,minimum 1/2 impact gun

15/16 sockets, beaker bar and 15/16 wrenches

Lots of different size extensions ,used in front and back

Torches may be needed... you can use this to cut the shock off or burn the dang thing down


As long as the bolt is not rusted to the shock bushing you can do both the front and the back without the torch. I had a front one I had to cut out so far.

I could not break the other bolts loose with my 1/2 impact gun I had to use a breaker bar and a long pipe to break them loose then go to the impact gun.

Also used my 15/16 wrench with a bottle jack to break a couple loose. If they are seized work on the Nut side and break that loose first then use the impact gun.


Oh how can I forget....BEER!!!!!!


Ok I am one of those fellows that say ..hey if it doesn't come off or fit right use a bigger hammer or a grinder.

I am no Henry ...AKA phoeix2013 !!!!


But again to answer your question yes you can get at everything you need to get at to do a DIY rear shock change out



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Retirement seems to be a "career" without any days off........anyhow as other have said it seems that shock mt bolts love to rust in place and then when you try to get them off they love to break off so...........I have had good luck spraying the nuts with pent-oil for a day then taking a torch and QUICKLY heat the nut without catching the shock rubber on fire then when you shut off the torch spraying the nut cool again with pent-oil (be careful to not catch the area on fire). The heat draws the pent-oil inti the threads as the nut cools. While the nut is still warm take a impact gun and try backing the nut off and on and off until the nut will be lose enough to come off.........hopefully.......


Good luck,


Best regards,



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Got mine done, had the nuts come lose but the bolt was rusted into the rubber bushings. I ended up taking the shock mount off the frame with the shock still attached and using a zip blade to cut the shock apart.The one thing I did not do and should have was coat the bolts with never seize so it will be esker the next time, well at least for the next guy as they will likely last my time with the milage I do.

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I did mine several years ago in a sandy overflow lot in South Florida. Started off with WD 40 and then went with something JW recommended. The propellant instantly cools the nut and if you keep it off the threads the change in temperature might break loose some of the stuff (or maybe it's the other way around.) I had a regular breaker bar and a 3 ft pipe, toughest part was the sand and getting good footing. Had a few knuckle scrapes in the end, but got them all done before the sun cleared the trees and made it unbearably hot. No grinding or fire required on my 2001 don't know when they had been changed before. Truck is at 870000 about now.




PS, I did spray WD 40 for several days before starting early one morning.

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Are new bolts and nuts included in the box when you buy new shocks? I know that in the car and light duty truck world, you reuse the factory bolts, or you buy new from your manufacturer dealer of choice.

Before I go cutting bolts out, It would be nice to have some replacements on hand.

No new bolts or nuts. all extra cost. They are not cheap either. Best if they can be re-used

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I don't care what you all think but no matter how much wd40 or what ever you use is not going to penetrate to the rusted bushing and bolt. The nut will come off, you will fight it all the way off since it is a nylock nut,(self locking nut) you fight it on and fight it off. The rusted on bushing and bolt are welded together, the rubber bushing will act like a water proof seal. Penetrating oils just cannot get through to the 1 and 1/2 inch steel bushing. I had to cut 2 of mine off with a torch, then peel the rubber off reheat the steel bushing cherry red. (Both were the bottom bolts on mine.)Then I used my impact gun and a pipe wrench. The pipe wrench to to hold the bushing in place while using the air gun to spin out the bolt.

All this while working in between the two rear axles with tire on.


Now I never looked at taking the shock bracket off. Nice idea may use that on the back axle shocks, I still have those 2 to do.


No new bolts came with my shocks either.

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My lower bolts came out ok but the removal of the top shock mounts worked well and then a zip blade to cut the shock and rubber apart.

Another trick to get a bolt out of rubber bushings is to us an air chisel and drive the bolt out, make site to leave the nut partly on to protect the threads. This works good sometimes but it did not work on all the shock bolts.

I ground down my round chisel point to make a driver out of it for this purpose.

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I have been spraying PB Baster every couple of days and I will do that until I get motivated to tackle this project.

Hoping it goes well.

When I changed the front shocks last year I had one top bolt that I did have to cut apart. It was welded solid and no amount of force or penetrating oil would free it.

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If you have room, use two opposing hammers on the nuts. Swing one and hold the other against the nut, on the flats. The shock will expand the nuts ever so slightly, breaking the bond of rust and allow the penetrating oil to do it's job.


A fool called a "nut cracker" may also be helpful. http://www.ebay.com/itm/K-D-TOOLS-PARTS-NUTCRACKER-BREAKER-MODEL-715-PARTS-UNIT-/351370680146

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  • 2 months later...

Just finished the rear shock install. the top bolts required a long cheater bar but did come off. I ended up cutting the lower shock bolts to get them out. The last person to change shocks obviously did it with the wheels off as the bolts were installed from the outside with the nut on the inside. I would have had to remove the wheels to have enough room to get the bolt out.

It was cheaper [under $10.00] to get new grade 8 bolts, nuts and washers than a trip to the shop to have the wheels taken off.

Two hack saw blades and an a little effort was better than an hours labour [at least] at a shop.


Next will be the cab shocks.

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