91 LeSabre strut nut

With my previous adventure with the tie rods sorted, I moved on to pulling the strut from the tower and compressing the spring, prior to removing the nut holding the strut shaft onto the spring seat.

What’s the trick here (for the apartment-dwelling home mechanic)? Near as I can tell, I’m using the same sort of wrench as the Haynes manual does (offset box end), but the wrench still gets interfered with by the spring seat metal, which is raised above the nut. The shaft is held in place by a No. 50 Torx driver.

Last time I did struts on my car, I took the strut/spring assemblies off, took those along with the new struts to my local tire shop, gave them 20 bucks, and got my new strut/spring assemblies back in 10 minutes.

I can only sort or vision what your problem is. Can you get a really deep socket on the nut? Be careful with that spring compressor, if it slips off, that spring might find its way to the other side of the garage (through you.)

There are different types of offset box end wrenches such as those with deep offsets. Can you borrow/buy/rent an electric impact wrench. That should take it off.

I many be resorting to a shop in the end. I can get a socket on the nut just fine, but then I can’t get the torx on the shaft to hold it still.

I’m not sure if an impact would work - if I try to move the nut right now, the shaft turns, unless I have it held in place with the torx.

With the impact wrench, it’s all the impacts per seconds which loosen the nut. Try the impact wrench and pry downwards on the coil spring, with a pry bar,etc., to keep tension on the nut; while the impact is hammering the nut.

I experienced this same thing with my 90 Pontiac 6000. The manual showed an offset wrench but there was no way one would fit that deep. What I did was bought a 1/2" drive deepwell socket of the appropriate size, and ground flats on it so I could turn it with a wrench. Then I used the other socket with the 3/8 drive with an extension, going through the hole of the larger socket. Worked pretty nicely.

Yeah, I’ve had the same problem getting the old one apart. I bought a $20 box wrench that barely works and is just not deep enough. I usually loosen the nut a little before taking it off, then hit it with the impact wrench on the bench. Sometimes you have to try and hold the shaft from turning with a vice grip through the spring so you can use a socket on it. Going back on is not a problem since there is enough resistance on the new struts. Always better to have the proper tools I guess.

Well, it took a few days, but I got the job done. I loosened the nuts by removing the spring compressor, reinstalling the strut in the tower, and relying on the spring force to hold the shaft in place. Yup, the struts were shot. Putting the new ones together wasn’t too bad. I was able to crank the nut all the way down on one side, using the same method. The other side spun anyways, so I took it by the dealer who was happy to put an impact wrench on it for 5 seconds after I told him was going to spend $75 on new strut-to-knuckle bolts. :slight_smile: Thanks for the help folks.

I got a socket that was deep enough and held it with a vise-grip plier. You can buy a socket set at sears that allows the stud to go through the hollow drive.

You need something like this:

The large socket goes over the nut at the top of strut and is then turned with a box/open end wrench. The torx that holds the shaft fits down through the large socket and can be held with a wrench or socket.