Author: William Howell
Before You Start...
What Do I Need To Do The Job Right?
Front Anti-Sway Bar:
Now crawl under the car and locate the front endlinks. Use a 14mm open end wrench to hold the shaft of the endlinks (circled in red) still while you use a ratchet to remove the nuts on the endlink rods (circled in yellow).
Remove the nut, lower washer and rubber bushing on each side and push the endlink rod out of the lower control arm. Remove the other rubber bushing (with the inner metal bushing) and top washer. Note how the bushings and washers fit onto the endlink rods! You will have to remember when you reassemble the endlinks with the new sway bars. Once you have removed all of the washers and bushings, rotate the endlinks out of the way.
Now we need to drop the catalytic converter down. You don't need to completely remove the cat., but you have to unbolt it from the header flange and lower it down enough so that the sway bar can pass between the header flange and the forward flange of the cat. Note: there is an O2 sensor on the rear section of the cat. I found that the easiest way to drop the cat down is to remove the rubber hangers on the pipe directly behind the cat, and then unbolt the cat. Here are a couple of pics of both the rubber hangers and the cat.
When you drop the cat. down, make sure that you have something to support it high enough off of the ground so that the wires on the O2 sensor are not stressed! The O2 sensor is not cheap to replace!! To gain some slack in the O2 wires, move the cat towards the passenger side and support it with something. I used an old milk carton (it's the only thing I could find at the time!).
As you can see in the above picture, once you unbolt the sway bar, you will have to maneuver the sway bar between the header flange and the cat. Be careful not to knock the cat off of the support; this could damage the O2 sensor. Now, all that remains is to unbolt the bushing brackets for the sway bar. The pictures of the old brackets did not come out, but here is one of the new front brackets. You will find the brackets on either end of the sway bar next to the mounting point for the lower control arms.
When you unbolt the brackets it is a good idea to have a friend hold the bar while you unbolt it or it could fall on you! Once you remove all four bolts (two per side) the bar should be easy to maneuver out from the car.
To remove the endlinks, you will need a 5mm allen key and 14mm open/box end wrench. Position them as shown:
Of course, turn the wrench to break the torque. Once you have the endlinks removed, you will need to install them onto the new sway bar. To tighten the endlinks to torque spec, you will need the same 5mm allen key, but now you will need a 14mm crow's foot with and extension. Position them as shown and torque the nuts to spec.
Installation of the new sway bar is reverse of removal of the old one. Make sure that you torque everything down to Honda's torque specs.
Also, most aftermarket manufacturers' anti-sway bar kits come with polyurethane bushings. It is critical that you lubricate these bushings! Polyurethane is prone to squeaking if not properly lubed.
Once you have everything assembled and you are sure that everything is torqued to spec, make a final inspection to check all of the clearances. Reinstall the wheels, put the car back on the ground and torque the lug nuts to spec.
Now, on to the rear bar. Continue...
This page last updated 4/3/01.