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How to Replace Rear Subframe Assembly 00-08 Ford Focus

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  1. step : Removing the Wheels (0:51)
    • Loosen the 19 mm lug nuts
    • Raise and support the vehicle
    • Remove the lug nuts
    • Remove the wheel
    • Repeat on the other side
  2. step : Disconnecting The Brake Lines (3:11)
    • Loosen the 11 mm flare nut to disconnect the brake hard line from the brake flex hose
    • Push down the brake pedal and hold it in place with a pry bar or board against the seat to stop fluid from flowing
    • Remove the brake hose retaining clip from the hose bracket
    • Repeat on the other side
  3. In this installation, we chose to transfer the brake drums and hardware to the replacement subframe. If you don't intend to keep your brake hardware, this step can be skipped. You will still need to disconnect the emergency brake cable, and remove it from the trailing arm, however.

  4. step : Removing the Brake Drums and Hardware (6:58)
    • Remove the wheel hub cover
    • Remove the 30 mm axle nut
    • Remove the brake rotor
    • Remove the three brake shoe springs
    • Remove the two brake shoe retaining pins
    • Disconnect the emergency brake cable from the brake shoe
    • Remove the emergency brake cable from the drum backing plate, or disconnect it at the outer connector
    • Remove the 7 mm bolt securing the emergency brake cable retaining bracket to the trailing arm
    • Repeat on the other side
  5. step : Removing the Subframe Assembly (14:18)
    • Remove the three T30 bolts to remove the plastic shield on each side
    • Remove the 15 mm lower shock mount bolt on each side
    • Remove the two 15 mm bolts from each of the forward subframe arms
    • Support and secure the subframe
    • Remove the exhaust hanger from the bushing attached to the subframe
    • Remove the 15 mm bolts from above each coil spring
    • Remove the forward 15 mm bolt from each side
    • Remove the two upper middle 15 mm bolts
    • Disconnect the vapor canister electrical connector
    • Remove the three bolts securing the vapor canister to the subframe to separate the vapor canister from the subframe
    • Lower the subframe to remove it
  6. step : Installing the Subframe Assembly (30:09)
    • Clean rust from the mounting surfaces on the body
    • Cover the mounting surfaces of the body with underbody spray or paint to prevent continuing rust
    • Remove the two 8 mm bolts to remove the brake cylinders if you intend to replace them
    • Lift the subframe assembly to the body
    • Install the exhaust hanger into the bushing suspended from the subframe assembly
    • Loosely install the 15 mm bolt above the coil spring on each side
    • Loosely install the 15 mm forward bolt on each side
    • Loosely install the 15 mm upper middle bolt on each side
    • Install the two 15 mm bolts on each of the forward arms, using a ratchet strap to pull the arms into position if necessary
    • Tighten all the mounting bolts
    • Install the vapor canister onto the subframe with the three bolts
    • Reconnect the vapor canister electrical connector
    • Install the plastic shield with the three T30 bolts on each side
    • Install the 15 mm lower shock bolt on each side, raising the shock bottom with a jack if necessary
  7. step : Installing the Brakes (47:37)
    • Install the replacement brake cylinder with the two 8 mm bolts on each side
    • Clean the inside of the brake drum backing
    • Apply brake grease to all of the brake shoe contact points, and the emergency brake cable contact point
    • Install the emergency brake cable bracket into the trailing arm and secure it with the 7 mm bolt
    • Connect the vehicle emergency brake cable with the inner cable
    • Hold back the spring of the emergency brake cable to insert it into the brake shoe level
    • Mount the brake shoe assembly onto the backing plate
    • Install the two brake shoe retaining pins
    • Install the lower brake spring
    • Install the brake drum
    • Install the 30 mm axle nut
    • Torque the 30 mm axle nut to 173 ft-lb
    • Straighten out the wheel hub cover if necessary
    • Add RTV to the inner lip of the drum hub
    • Install the hub cover and clean off excess RTV
  8. If your existing brake lines, or those that came with the replacement subframe, are still in good condition, they do not need to be replaced. Simply reconnect the brake hard line to the flex hose, and secure the hose with the retaining clip in the bracket.

  9. step : Replacing Brake Lines (56:09)
    • Insert a fitting onto the brake line
    • Use a bubble flare tool to flare the brake line end
    • Use the old brake line to rough measure the brake line
    • Cut the brake line with a line cutter tool
    • Test fit and shape the brake line in the subframe, and trim excess line if necessary
    • Repeat the flaring procedure on the other end of the brake line
    • Install the brake line into the cylinder and flex hose
    • Secure the flex hose to the bracket with the retaining clip
    • Tighten the flare nuts with an 11 mm flare wrench, or the size needed for your replacement fittings
    • Repeat on the other side if necessary
    • Perform a full brake bleed
  10. step : Installing the Wheel (1:09:35)
    • Install the wheel onto the wheel studs
    • Install the 19 mm lug nuts
    • Tighten the lug nuts by hand in a crossing pattern
    • Lower the vehicle with minimal weight on the wheel
    • Torque the lug nuts to 94 ft-lb in a crossing pattern

Hey friends, it's Len here at 1A Auto. Today we're working on our 2001 Ford Focus. This is the hatchback ZX3 model. I'm going to be removing the rear subframe unit. It's going to be fairly simple. I want to be the one that shows you how to do it. If you need any parts, you can always check us out at Thanks.

Part of the reason why we're replacing this subframe, not only for our instructional video, is partially because it's very rotted. All up along here, that's where the mounting plate is for this subframe, where it mounts to the body. The subframe itself rots out right up along here. We notice that this is rotted out. It's very unsafe, so we decided that we were going to make an instructional video for you on how to replace it. If you see yours like that, go ahead and replace your subframe.

Okay, one of the first things we have to do is take off the wheel, obviously. We're going to remove our lug nuts. These are missing the caps. Usually they have a chrome cap on them. That would make them 19s. These are actually closer to an 18, so that's what I'm going to use to remove it. But generally speaking, you're going to use a 19 to remove your lug nuts. Take off our wheel. Set it aside. Then we'll do the same to the other side of the vehicle.

Okay, so it's going to be time to take down the subframe here. We're going to want to pay attention to the mounting bolts. You've got a mounting bolt that comes up inside the coil spring area here. There's one over on the other side of the vehicle that's in the same exact spot. There is a forward bolt right up in here. There's going to be another one on the other side of the vehicle, same spot. Then deep down in here there's two bolts that hold this arm in, and of course, same on the other side of the vehicle. That would be all the mounting bolts for this particular subframe. You also have your shock bolt. That's going to need to come off. This one right here. Because the shock goes up to the body of the vehicle and it holds this arm. Some vehicles had the evap canister here. Once we start lowering this down, we'll be able to get this out of the way. You want to just pay special attention, make sure that in case this starts coming down, if this is somehow attached anywhere up here where I can't see, which I don't think it is, but just in case you want to make sure that you're not pulling this down, putting a tug on anything. Obviously this doesn't look like it's in the best condition.

Then of course, you've got brake lines, which come right along here. They come down along here, up to this bracket. Then you've got your flex hose. It comes down to this bracket, which is part of this arm, and goes down to your wheel cylinder. What I'm going to do is I'm going to loosen this line right here, remove this right here from this bracket, and I'm going to take out this clip right here and make it so this flex hose can get up and away and it's not going to be holding onto this arm anymore. Once it's down on the ground, we'll make a decision on if we're going to replace this brake line or if we're just going to try to reuse it. I sprayed it all down ahead of time, all the areas that I was going to be taking apart.

Okay, one of the things we're going to do first here is we're going to loosen this line right here. I'm going to use an 11 millimeter. This is just a flare end wrench. Basically, it covers the majority of the sides of the fitting, so you get extra grip that way. Then once it's loose, you can use an open end. Like I said, I had sprayed all this down ahead of time so it makes things a little easier for me. As you do this, brake fluid is going to start coming out, so you want to make sure you have your catch bucket, eye protection, hand protection of course. Should be ... There we are. Okay, now I'm going to bring the vehicle down and I'll show you what I'll do next.

Okay, now I'm just going to take a pry bar, put it up against the seat, push the seat far forward as far as I can so the pedal is all the way on the floor. I'm going to leave it like that and I'll move ahead to the next step. You'll notice that the fluid stopped coming out. We no longer even have a trickle of a drip or anything. The reason for that is because when we pushed the master cylinder, or we pushed the pedal all the way down to the floor, we pushed the piston inside the master cylinder past where the ports are that lead down to the ABS unit into the lines. Now we don't have to worry about fluid coming dripping down on us the whole time we're working down here. Also, we don't have to worry about the master cylinder going dry and then having to bleed out the whole system, and going through that rigamarole. This just skipped us right past that whole mess.

Right here there's a clip that comes through from this direction. It's like a horseshoe. It just slides right through and it's going to hold this flex hose into this bracket. You can do whatever you have to do to get that out. For me personally, I just like to give it a couple bonks and drive it right out, so that's what I'm going to do. Come over here, see if I can get it on there. It's starting to come off. At this point it could go anywhere. It might hit the floor. I don't know. Right there. There we are. I'll grab that. We've got our little U clip there. That just goes around the brake flex hose and it locks it into that bracket.

Well, it looks like we'll have to replace this line more than likely. It's very flaky all up along the top right here and the fitting itself doesn't want to spin, so this line right here will have to be replaced and with a new fitting. This line right here isn't coming out of the flex hose, so what I'm going to do is I'm just going to go ahead and cut the brake line. We're going to have to replace this anyway because it was very rotted and flaking. I don't like it like that, so I'll replace it. I'm just going to take my cutters. I'm going to cut it like this. There we are. Just let that get that stuff out of there real quick. All right, here we go. Just get this line out of here.

There we are. That's stuck in there pretty good, but I'll get it out in a second. This is our brake line fitting. This is the fitting that goes up into the flex hose. It's a bubble flare. See how it's kind of rounded outward? It's called a bubble flare. When it comes time to remake a line, if you have to do it, you want to make sure you have a bubble flare kit.

Okay, so to get your brake drum off you're going to need to take this cover off. To do that, I just use a small flathead screwdriver, but if you have a punch that's nice and small like this, it's probably better for you to use. I'm just going to go in here, lightly tap, just right in between the cover and the drum itself. Pop this off. Take a look at it. You can tell it's a little bent over from where I brought the screwdriver in. I'll just make sure that I go ahead and peen that back over the way it's supposed to look. Then we'll reseal it. This is just RTV sealant. It keeps moisture out of there so it doesn't get into here, ruin your nut in your bearing. This nut right here is a 30 millimeter. I'll just remove that real quick. You can use a ratchet or your air gun, whichever one you want to use.

A lot of times the drum won't want to come right off, but this one's pretty new and it did, very easily actually. Surprise, surprise. When they're older like the one on the other side over there, it's going to be a little bit more difficult. This looks good. The seal looks good.

We got the drum off. We can see the brakes. The rear drum was brand new obviously. Rear shoes, brand new. Hardware is brand new. If you look at the other one on the old one, you can compare them, see which one you'd rather use. I would rather go with the brand new. If you've got two used sets and you don't like either of them, just go on, order some new shoes, new drums, and check out the video on that. But we'll get these springs off of here real quick and then we can move along.

I'm just going to use my cutters. I'm not going to cut, but I'm going to use them to grab. They grab on nice. Grab this lower spring. The spring dent, you've got a long shaft and then a spring dent, that goes near the e-brake pivot right here. You've got upper springs right here. I'm going to leave these alone. We'll come over here. You want to make sure you have safety glasses on throughout pretty much this whole project, but there's some areas that you especially want to make sure you have safety glasses on and this would be one of them.

What I'm going to do here is I'm going to take my screwdriver again, I'm going to press right on this clip right here. It's a spring clip, so when you press it's going to want to spring back out. I press in, springs back out. When I press this in, I need to turn the pin, which is this piece in the center, so it's straight up and down, it will line up with the spot on the spring clip. Once I do that, there isn't going to be anything holding this from flying back to hit me in the face, so I'm just going to be careful. Try to reach around the back side there. That's our spring clip. There's our pin. It just comes through like that. Turn it, locks it in. Okay, easy peasy.

I like to go along the shoe side with the screwdriver. It's just easier for me, but I suppose you could probably do it with either side. For me, the shoe kind of just holds it so I can't slide off very far. The other side same as the first. Now we can move our shoes around. I'm going to reuse all this stuff. This looks like it was just very recently done, so I know that this looks like it's already lubed up. I can stick my screwdriver in here, it moves around freely. This is the adjuster. I don't have to worry about freeing that up. I'm just going to come over here, take my e-brake cable out of it. Just pull the spring around so it lines up with the hole right there. Then slide it out. This is all still attached together. We didn't have to deal with any of the springs. I'm going to reuse all this. If I was replacing it, then of course I would have to take it apart because I would need to reuse this adjuster right here.

This right here is your e-brake cable. It comes through the backing plate, comes through this way, then of course up to your vehicle. Our new subframe comes with this piece right here attached to it, but it's easier to get apart and this is still in good condition if I just come through right here. The e-brake cable right here, where it comes through the backing plate, has these little ears. It should be three ears holding that in. Basically, once it goes through they kind of peen out like that. Then they make it so you can't pull the cable back through because it's got these little ears that hold up against the backing plate.

I like to use a little tool like this. Other people use pliers. You can use screwdrivers. You can use all sorts of things. But this is the tool that's meant for it, and I just happen to have one so I'm going to go ahead and use it. A little bit of penetrant goes a long way. Just try to slide this up on there. Once that's on, it should push down all those ears for me and theoretically this cable should want to come sliding out fairly easily, if I can get my tool up far enough. There we are. Get this out of here. Oh, that came right apart. Figures. These things hardly ever come out, right here. Basically, what happens is it goes right up in there and it's supposed to have locks. This one, the little lock is not attached, or not peened over. That made it slide out nice and easy.

We can go with the assumption that this right here did not want to come out of the backing plate. We know that the new one came with this piece of the cable. So, as long as yours did come with this piece of the cable, and it has this bracket, what you would do now, obviously spray some lubricant up in here, twist this so it lines up. You can see these little tabs right there. These are the locking tabs. You just stick your small screwdriver in there, pry this out a little bit so it's not holding up against the line, and you just grab it, slide it out of there. Just like that.

Now this is going to go with the rest of the subframe and we're going to get the e-brake cable out of this spot right here. This bolt right here is a seven millimeter. I'm going to use a quarter inch ratchet and socket, seven millimeter. What this is doing, this bolt goes through this arm and then it screws into the ... I'll show you. Right here. This is plastic. That's where our bolt went through, right into there. We went through the arm and then screwed right into this plastic. Small bolts like this are easy to lose, so I'm just going to start it back in there. It's going nowhere. We'll set this aside. Now we're going to do the same thing to the other side of the vehicle.

We're going to take out these Torx bits bolts right here. They're T30s. This is what a T30 looks like. It's kind of like a little star headed tool. There's three. One, two, three. We'll get this plastic shield out of the way. It just zips right out of there. Easy peasy. They only screw into these little plastic grommets that are pressed into the body anyway, so they're not like a high torque item. If it ever spins like this on you, just kind of pull down on the plastic itself. There's always something that happens. The grommet inside the body is just spinning, so I'm just going to do what I have to do. Slide this just like this. Then just get that out of the way. This just opened everything up so I can see in here. We've got our bolt there, bolt there. Before we go ahead and touch these, I'm going to go over to the other side of the vehicle and remove the T30s that we have over there.

We're going to remove this bolt. This is where the shock comes down and it meets up with this swing arm. The shock is going to stay with the vehicle. 15 millimeter. This is the lower shock bolt. Do the same to the other side of the vehicle. Looks like it's in decent condition except for near the tip, but the threaded area looks decent so it's reusable. Okay, shocks can move around. We don't have to worry about those anymore.

Let's move ahead. We're going to go up and do these up here. 15 millimeter. Bolt number two, same as the first. We'll set those aside. We've got our tranny jack under here. This is supporting the subframe here in the rear. We haven't taken out of any of the rearward support bolts yet or anything, so we don't have to worry about it coming down. We just wan to have it situated so it's ready to go. Now we want to just disconnect this right here. This is the exhaust hanger. I'm just going to pull the rubber off the end of it here. There we are. We have the bracket that comes off the subframe with our rubber. It should go over this part, and holds the exhaust from shaking around too much. Just take that right off of there. Easy peasy. A little bit of penetrant will do it for you.

I've got my 15 on a swivel with a nice long extension. Just get it up on there. This bolt is super rusted. I'm just going to hammer it up on there. You just want to make sure you're up as far as you can go. You don't want to catch it on just the end of the bolt there and hope that it's enough because with this much rust and everything you want as much grip as you can possibly get on this thing. All right, let's switch it out. There we go. It's turning. I'm just trying to go nice and slow here. Now that I know it's nice and broken free, I'm just going to grab my air gun. Okay. Wow. There's that. There's our bolt. I'm going to replace that. There's our mess.

This piece right here that came out with the bolt that we just removed from our garbage subframe, this is actually part of the subframe. If you were to feel up on the inside here, it comes right down and it's literally a part of the pressed subframe. Essentially all this area right here that's divoted in is rotted out on that one up there.

We're going to remove this forward bolt, 15 millimeter. Use my ratchet. Yeah, cool. All right, it's broken free. There it is. It's always a good idea to replace these bolts. This one looks decent enough to reuse if you had to, but these hold the subframe in so if you have access to new bolts, I would definitely spend an extra couple bucks and go ahead and get some.

Okay, so this bolt right here looks as though it would be reusable. I would definitely replace the bolts though. If you can go with OE. This is a Ford, so if you can go to Ford and get a new set of bolts, you'd want to get all the mounting bolts. It's a grade eight bolt, strongest bolt you can get. Of course, because you want to make sure you have the subframe in there and it's nice and sturdy. You don't want anything happening. If you use the wrong bolt, like a grade five bolt, something you can get pretty much anywhere, it's not going to be holding it in as tight as you should.

Get this one out of here. We've got two last bolts. There's one up in here. Then there's one on the other side of the vehicle in the same spot. To get to those you would just come up through here. Then we'll come right up through here and go right up to that bolt up there using my 15 millimeter swivel head. Something to think about is that this bolt and that bolt over there are the last two bolts holding your subframe in so you need to make sure that you're nice and secured, you've got it so your subframe can go nowhere once you get these bolts out.

All the subframe bolts that mount to the body are all the same, so you don't have to worry about mixing them up. I'm going to be replacing them anyway. This one is super hard to see. Last bolt, same as the other five. We're going to disconnect this electrical right here. It's got a little squeeze tab. You can squeeze that with your finger. Then just give it a little tug. If it wasn't filled with gunk and debris, it should come out pretty easy. Just take a peek in there. I don't see any funny colors. It looks decent. Set that aside.

We want to make sure that the subframe is nice and secure to whatever we're going to be lowering it onto, whether you've got jack stands and you're getting ready to raise the vehicle up off of it, or if you're using a tranny jack like what I am, you want to make sure that the subframe is secure. Keep in mind that the forward end of the subframe has weight that pulls off to the forward, or to the front, so the subframe might want to roll once the body gets out of the way.

Here we go. We're going to go down nice and slow. All right. This side seems like it's catching on something. There we are. On the subframe, it has these. That's what was getting stuck inside the body, this piece right here. I just shook it a little bit, it came free. Try to lower it down. As we lower, just keep checking to make sure we're not doing anything that we shouldn't be doing here. We've got everything unattached. Right here the subframe, even though we took this out of the rubber, it's still coming down, the bracket's coming down and hitting up against the exhaust right there. You want to make sure you have that nice and free because when you're bringing this down you do not want to be pulling your exhaust down, down, down, causing issues down the line, replacing exhaust parts.

This looks pretty great. We've got this right here. This is for ABS if your vehicle had rear ABS. Ours does not, but that doesn't mean that I want to go ahead and rip the wires out. There we are. Okay. It was like that on both sides. If I kept going down and I didn't stop to check, well what would have happened, I would have probably ripped either these out of the side there or ripped the wires. Just take your time.

We've got evap hoses and lines up along here. You've got your evap canister that's coming down with it. But, the hoses are still attached up here at the same time. What I'm going to do now is I'm going to try to see from up top and see if I can disconnect this box and leave it hanging with the vehicle, and then continue to get the subframe down.

Right up on top here you'll notice that there's supposed to be a bolt head right there, one located over here, and then there's one on the forward end on the other side of this. They all look the same, rotted and they're pretty much going to be impossible to go ahead and get out of there. I'm going to go about doing it a different way than trying to stick a socket on there and strip, strip, strip, and just have a nightmare of a time. Where these are very rotted, I feel as though I can stick a pry bar underneath here, pop this up. Then when we go to install our charcoal canister onto our new subframe unit, I'll just use new bolts and some washers and stuff.

I'm just going to go ahead and use a pry bar. I'm going to try to get in between the plastic and the subframe. Just try to give it a couple of loving bonks here. See what we're looking at. It looks like it's starting to come up. Man, that thing is so bad. I'm going to try to get these bolts out right here. They were pretty stripped. I'm just going to use some twisty sockets. Essentially the way that these are on the inside, they're approximately the size of the bolt head that I'm putting on there, but inside they're kind of rifled. They have like a ... I'll grab a big one here and see if I can show you. I don't know if you can see the inside of there, but it's called a twisty socket. Essentially when you hammer it on, it turns itself, turns until it bottoms out. Then when you try to loosen this, it should grab on nice and tight and rip it out of there.

I got that one hammered on. Let's give it a try. Okay, that one's a no. I just went down a size. When you're dealing with rusted and rotted stuff, a lot of times that's just what happens. You're just going to have to keep changing it up. This doesn't even feel like it's going to work. Nope. Okay.

Okay, so the twisty sockets weren't working on trying to take out these bolts. That happens. It's like. I mean, look at this thing. It's not exactly quality at this point, right. Here we go. Go on You can buy yourself one of these. It's got a little cutting disc on it. It tells you which way that the disc rotates right on it, rotation this direction. You want to make sure that you're holding it so when you start cutting the sparks are going to shoot away from your face. Always wear your safety glasses, wear your hand protection, and keep your mouth closed when you're doing this.

I'm just going to cut off the head. Then we should be able to pry up the plastic for the charcoal canister. We might need to go a little more, but I didn't want to try to cut into the plastic too much if possible. It's hard to see up here at the same time as cutting. Looks as though I could probably take a little bit more off the back side there, the area that I really couldn't see. There we are. We're going to do the same to this one and more than likely the forward bolt as well.

All right, now that we've got this off of here, everything's nice and free, start lowering this down. Just watch for everything shifting. If it starts falling, use your best judgment. Don't get yourself underneath or anything like that. If it's just a little wobble and you think you can contain it, that's fine. But if it starts really falling, don't risk hurting yourself. Oh yeah. Holy cow! Then you've got the other side. Not as bad, but definitely on its way. Then of course we've got our subframe unit that we're going to be putting in here.

Easy peasy. Okay, here we go. Side by side. Both of them look the same. We've got our mounting holes, three on each side. You've got them on this side over here as well. You've got your exhaust hangers, coil springs. You've got the arms that go forward. It looks like it's got everything that we need on there in exception of just switching out the brakes. Cool.

All up along here, along where the subframe mounts up to the body, we have a lot of really large rust flakes. You need to make sure you get the majority of that off there, as much as you can. That way there when we put up the new subframe we won't have rust and rot possibly making it so it's not sitting up flush with the body. You just use a little hammer, just try to get rid of the majority of this stuff here. There we are. Looks pretty decent. We'll do the same for all the holes. This one looks great. These up here look great. I'm not worried about any of those. This side of the vehicle looks great. Great, great, great. Up here we've got a little bit. That looks decent. All right, let's move along.

Okay, so we've got our mounting holes for where our subframe goes onto. I'm just going to use something like this, a little marker tip. Go in here. Then use a little bit of undercoating. Just get around the holes. The reason why I'm using the marker is just to plug the threaded area. It's your prerogative if you want to do this part or not. I would definitely do it. Now we'll do the same to the other side of the vehicle.

Okay, so the wheel cylinders that came with our subframe unit, they've been in there for a while and it looks as though a lot of moisture's been getting in there, so we're just going to change these out with the original ones we had because those are in much better condition. There's two eight millimeter bolts. There's one right there and there's one on the forward side. We're just going to remove those. To do that, you can use a little eight millimeter quarter inch swivel and extension, and of course the ratchet. Put it on the one that's easier to see. Let's see.

This one's a little harder to get to, and the reason why we needed to use the universal head eight millimeter. Bolt number two looked exactly like the first. There's our wheel cylinder. You can keep this boot. These things are like gold if you're a mechanic. That of course is the bleeder screw, but we're not going to worry about that. But if you can see inside there, you can see how rusted it is. If you were to pull this out, it would probably look about the same in there, if not all corroded on the bleeder screw. As you can tell, it's just nasty. This whole wheel cylinder is just ready to be recycled. Let's switch it out.

On the original subframe, the one we just removed from the vehicle, we're going to be replacing the steel line here. We're going to use some nice copper stuff here. It's going to be very nice. All I'm going to do is I'm just going to cut this. I'm going to leave a nice gap between where the cutters are and the actual fitting because I like to reuse the fitting. The reason why I'm doing it like this is so once I take this out, I'll be able to give this a couple bonks and hopefully I should be able to drive it through fairly easily.

All right, we've got our 11 on there. We have a bubble tip on the end of the line that comes through the fitting. When we make our new line, we want to make sure we have the bubble end on there. We're going to remove the wheel cylinders. These ones are in better condition than the originals. If you wanted to replace them, now would be the time to just replace them with brand new ones. For the purpose of this video I'm not going to worry about that. I'm just going to take my line, put it in here. Just going to give it a little spray. All right. Just going to give this a couple bonks, see if I can get the line to break free from the fitting.

Okay. As you can tell, it's not really coming down at this point, which means it's still frozen inside the fitting. If you have access to a little bit of heat, use a little bit of heat. Safety glasses of course in case anything starts popping. Last thing I want is a hot piece of metal in my eye. Obviously you don't want to breathe in any of these fumes. It looks like it's getting nice and warm. Okay. When I spray this it's going to smoke some more. Okay. It's still not moving. What I'm going to do now is I'm just going to cut off the line where it goes up to the fitting. Then we'll drive it through with a punch.

I'm going to use my cutting wheel. It started to move, so that's good. It's always a good idea if you have the access to them to replace these. But not everybody has access, so this is just a good way of getting your line out. It looks like it's coming. Taking its time, but ... I could try to clamp it tighter in the vice, but I'm really trying not to crush the fitting itself. Okay, it's a solid no.

Looks pretty good. Go that way. Now, on the top of the subframe, you've got your little piton in here. That goes up inside the hole. Same thing on the other side. Getting them lined up, it's really not very hard if you just take your time, a few light slams, and then of course we've got our exhaust that needs to go into its rubber. We'll do that in a minute. Just got to push it. Oh yeah. Cool.

Okay. All right. It looks like we're pretty much lined up with that one. That one's lined up. All right. Now we need to get the exhaust to line up with the right hole on this thing. There we are. Just get that off of there. Slide that in just like that. There we are. I'm just going to grab a little bit of lubricant here. Nice. We've got a couple of our new bolts here. I'm just going to go right up through the center. All we're aiming to do is just get this started. There we are.

I'm just going to start this in a few threads, and the other one the same. There we are. Okay. There we are. That went in a few threads. Get this one in a few threads. All right. It's your prerogative if you want to use thread locker on these six mounting bolts. I personally do use thread locker. That one started in pretty good. I'm not fully tightening any of these down until I have them all in, but by bringing these in it brings up the forward end of the subframe right along here up closer so I can hopefully get these bolts started in now.

That's definitely started in. Okay, this one not so much. I'm going to try to snug this bolt in a little bit more, see if it brings it up higher for me. An air gun in this situation might be a little bit more useful. The only difference is that I really can't control how far up the subframe is going the go. Until I get them all started in, I kind of like to have it so the subframe can move around at least a little bit. All right, we've got all six of those started in. Let's move along to the next step.

I'm using my ratchet strap to try to draw this arm forward to line up my bolts. I've got that first one in there started. The second one is going to be a little bit more difficult by the look of it. Just got get it finagled around. Looks like that's it. Get that started in there. Cool. All right. I'm going to get those up and in there a little further. That one's started up there pretty good. I'm not going to tighten those down yet.

Move over to the other side of the vehicle. Okay, this one needs to come ahead as well. We'll go like this again. Okay. All right, we've got all of our bolts started, all of our mounting bolts. This is the end. It's going to go ahead and button these right up. All the forward mounting bolts are tight. Now I'm just going to grab my flash light, come right up here. We'll get these. Awesome. If you weren't sure that you tightened them all down, you could just go around again and make sure that you get them all. They all need to be tightened.

I'm just going to come up through the hole. Just get our nut up on there. I'll just snug them up. up on there. All right, just get the forward one and we're all done. Put a little bit of silicone paste on there, dielectric grease. Helps keep moisture out of there. There we are. Take this, get this up in here. It goes up there like that. Use our T30 again. Snug. Snug. This piece right there goes up into the hole. Same for the other side. Snug it up. Get this piece put into its hole. All right, next step.

Now it's time to get the shock bolts in. That's these right here. There the ones with the pointy tips. The other six that we took out for the mounting bolts did not have pointy tips. Pick which one you want. You can use thread locker if you'd like. It's completely up to you. What you want to do is line up the hole for the shock and the hold inside the subframe knuckle here. You might need a pull jack or a regular jack, bring it up or down, whatever you have to do to line up the holes. We'll get that started in, 15 millimeter here. There we are. It's started. We'll bottom it out in one second. I'm going to do the other side too. Try to get this one lined up.

All right, we've got our wheel cylinder. I'm just going to put it right in here like this. Get our bolt in there. The other bolt, this one's a little harder to reach, a lot harder to reach. There we are. Okay, both of those are started. I'm going to go ahead and snug them up now using my eight millimeter swivel. Snug. Tight. Get this off of here. Both of those are tight. Move on to the next step.

Now we'll clean off the back plate. Put a little catch bucket under there. These areas that look like they're all bumped and blotted, those are actually the rub areas where the shoe rubs on the backing plate. Once we get everything cleaned up, we're going to put a little bit of lube on the contact points. There's that. There we are. Now that we've got that done, use a little bit of brake lube. Just put it on the contact points, all those little splotty areas that I told you about. That's where the shoe is going to ride on. Okay, we've got those. The shoe also touches up against here, here, and of course up against the wheel cylinder. There we are.

Just get our little bolt out of here. Bring this around from the back side and through right here. Bring this in. Put our bolt in there. Now we're just going to be tightening up into plastic here and this isn't a structural integral part, so you just want to make sure that it's snug. Then just a teeny bit more. That's it. There we are.

We're going to put this through the large part and then pull it down into the skinnier part. Just like that. There we are. Bring that down over there. It just keeps the moisture out of there. I'm going to do, put a little bit of lube right here. That's just because that's where the e-brake spring is going to ride. That will help protect it over time of being pulled and all that, it's going to drag on that.

To grab onto this, I'm just going to grab this like this. Use my cutters. I'm not going to try to squeeze to the point that I'm cutting anything, I'm just using them to grip. Pull that like that. I'm using the cutters, so I hold the spring back. I'm going to slide the line through there. Bring it up. I brought it essentially through this forward hole, and then slid it down through. Now the spring is pressing up against here and this can't come out. Just put it up over the wheel cylinder. There we are. Put that in there. I've got this sitting right down in the grooves where it meets up with the backing plate. The shoe hits up against all of our mounting points going along the backing plate. Put that right like that. Now we'll grab our hardware.

We're going to take our hardware, come through the back side of the backing plate with our pin, and come through this hole. Just like that. I like to put the pin so it's facing straight up and down. Then I'll take this, line that up also so the slot is straight up and down. Use my screwdriver. I've got my safety glasses on of course. Then I just turn with the back side on that pin so it lines up with this groove. Now it's locked in, can't go anywhere. We'll do the same for this shoe.

We have our spring. We've got the springed end and then the shanked end. The spring side goes on this side. You're going to start by putting right inside there. You have to start with this side and not this side because if you put it in this side you won't be able to get it into that groove right there. It's just impossible because to get it in there you need to come down along the shoe and then bring it up. I'm going to go back to using my cutters here. Once again, I'm not going to use them for cutting. I'm just using them for gripping.

I like to go like this and then I'll just use the shoe, and I'll use my hand strength and squeeze it to line it up with that hole. Make sure that's in. That's in. That's in. Just double check all these springs, make sure nothing moved. That looks good. This right here is behind your shoe. It's not ... Somehow, I don't even know if you could do it, but it's not all kinked up in there. This one's right behind the shoe. It's happy there. We've got our lubricant where it needs to be. On to the next step.

I'm just putting a little bit of paste or silicone paste, you can use grease, whatever you've got, just right along that black seal right there. That's going to help keep moisture out of this bearing. Right along there. We're going to try to keep moisture from getting into the bearing area. We'll just grab these, see if we can slide this on. There we are. Axle nut. We'll just bottom this out and then we'll torque it down. We're going to torque it down to 173 foot pounds. That's tight.

Right along here on the cover for the bearing, that's where we put our screwdriver in to be able to break it free. I just use some pliers, bend it away, make it so it looks like a fairly decent circle. Then we're going to use a little bit of gasket maker, or RTB, go right around that. Then we'll place it into the drum. I'm just going to use a little bit of gasket maker. You can go either along the lip on the drum or right along the cover, whatever you want to do just as long as it goes all the way around. If you go along the drum, you can hold onto this to do what you have to do and you don't get covered in it. That's always nice. Just bonk that in there. Clean up our mess if there is any.

Now that we've got the cover on and all that, you're going to do the same to the other side and then we'll move ahead to the brake lines. The bubble flare is the type of flare that we removed from the vehicle with the fitting. You can tell that it's not inverted because well, it's not inverted. With that said, let's go ahead and create ourselves a bubble flare. We're going to take our new fitting, slide it onto the brake line. Nothing worse than making a flare and not having a fitting on there. Then you have to cut it off and remake it. It's a pain in the butt.

We'll take our bubble flare kit. With the bubble flare kit, it's important to remember you want to have your line lined up with the edge of your tool. I'm just going to make sure that it's lined up. If it's a little bit past, it's not that big of a deal. If it's not past or not even lined up, then that is a little bit more of a big deal because you need to make sure you have enough material there to make the correct flare. I'm just going to snug this up. There it is. I'm going to take my tool with a 3/16 adapter on there. The tool generally speaking will come with multiple adapters, so use whichever one for the vehicle you're working on. This is 3/16 line, so obviously I'm going to use 3/16 adapter.

I'm going to take my adapter and just bring it down. There we are. It's going into the hole. I'm just going to drive my adapter all the way down until it touches up against the clamping unit, which is this right here. I'll unscrew this. Sorry about the noise of the line. There's our bubble flare. It sits in perfect with the fitting. Looks very much like the original. Now we go over to the vehicle, figure out exactly how much line we're going to need, cut the line, and finish up the rest.

Okay, we've got our original brake line out of the vehicle, the one that we cut and well, broke. I'm going to get my estimation of what size we need. I'm going to give myself extra because it's easier to cut some off than it is to go ahead and put some on there. I'll just start here. Roll the brake line down along here. Come across and then up over here. I know I need at least to there. I'm just going to come up to approximately there. Use my brake line cutter. Once again, I know I have plenty. If I have to trim a little extra off, it's okay. I know brake line is a little expensive, but ... Getting close. There we are. We've still got our fitting on there. We're going to make sure we get our other fitting up on here as well.

Our original brake line, this is where it broke off from the wheel cylinder. It has a pretty good bend right here, so I'm just going to create that bend real quick with my thumbs. If you're not strong enough to do it by hand, you know you can use a bending tool and all that. I'm going to go approximately right here. When I make my bend, I want to make sure that it's not peened over. I can see very clearly that the fluid will have plenty of room to flow through there. It's not crimped. There's no sharp edge. This looks great. I'm just going to get this up in here. Bring it over to my wheel cylinder.

I remember the original line went in between this right here and the rear shock, so that's the exact way that I'm going to bring the new one. I'm just going to start this in a few threads. I'm not going to tighten it in or anything yet. I still want it to be able to move around, and I still want to be able to maneuver it the way that I need to. I'm just going to bring this like this. Come that way. Bring this up here just like that. That looks pretty great. Doesn't look like it's going to hit anything. Could I trim a little bit off of this and bring it up like that, yeah, or I could just have it down like this. It's not getting in the way of anything. It really depends on your prerogative how you want to actually physically do it. As long as it's not going to hit up against anything once the suspension starts moving around, you're doing all right.

For this right here, maybe I will trim a little bit off just because I like to give myself a little bit more space right here. I'm just going to grab my cutting tool again. You don't want to use cutters. We're not cutting wire or anything like that. We definitely don't want to crimp it over or anything. I'm just going to turn this so I can see where I'm going to cut. I'm not taking off very much. I'd much rather do this nice instead of twice, even though technically I do have to do it twice because I'm doing the other side of the vehicle after this. Some of these cutting tools don't ratchet. If that's the case for you, then that's going to be harder to do stuff like this. I got my rag caught in there of course. There we are. Awesome.

We'll get that up here. Now this brought the line up quite a bit higher. I definitely don't need to worry about it at this point hitting up against anything. We're going to make sure we put our fitting on, and then we'll continue with the bubble flare. The hose is where it's going to go, which is going to be located right inside here. This is just going to come essentially up and into there. Now that we know where we're at, I'm just going to take the line back out of here. If you wanted to, you could do this inside the vehicle, try to get your tool up in there, blah, blah, blah. This is a very simple line to get out of here, so I'm just going to go ahead and do it in an area where I'm more comfortable, and of course it will be easier to record.

We're back over at our bench. I've got my new fitting that's on. I've got my bubble flaring kit. I'm going to line it up so it's nice and flush. Snug that. Get that one snugged. Grab our tool. Just bring that up a little bit. There we are. Okay. All right, I've got the little piton on the adapter lined up with the hole. Now I'm just going to go ahead and drive it in. It's minimal pressure. Just bring it around. It just felt like it bottomed out right there. I'm not going to try to keep going or anything like that. I don't need to hurt myself or damage anything. Loosen this up. Let's see how it looks. Oh yeah. It doesn't get any better than that. All right, let's get ready for install.

Okay, we're going to get our new brake line in here. Just bring it through. Put it up at the wheel cylinder there. See about getting the fitting started in. Try to get it so it's lined up. I've got a few good threads. Give it a tug. It's not going anywhere. I'm not going to tighten that up yet. I want my brake line to be able to move around. Now I'm going to come in here. I've got my flex hose unattached so I can move everything around if I need to. Pull the fitting up here. I can even bring it up like this so it's up top. It's even easier to get started that way. Okay, it's started in there. There we are. Now I'm just going to get my hose back down into where it goes and grab my clip. I'm just going to slide it right in along here.

If I had a small hammer right here, which I don't, just bonk that in there. See about straightening it out a little bit. Okay. We've got it started here. We've got it started on the other end. It looks really good. Now I'm going to grab my wrench to tighten it up. For this application it's a 10 millimeter. Depending on the size of the fitting that you have, the original was an 11 to take it off, the new one's a 10. Sometimes they're a 3/8 wrench. I've got that one snugged. That one snugged.

All right, now I'm going to grab a flare end wrench and I'm going to tighten them down. I prefer to use a flare end wrench when available because it grips onto more of the fitting and there's less chance of me rounding off the brand new fitting that I just installed. Okay, there it is. Now we're just going to check our line, make sure it's not hitting anywhere. I've got almost enough room to get my finger in under there. This comes pretty close to the shock right here, so I'm just going to do this. Bend that away. I've got plenty of room for my shock.

There's no way that that's going to hit. Still no way this is going to hit. It's not going to hit anywhere over here. I'm not anywhere close to anything that it's going to rub on, which is super important. Even if the vehicle shifts up and down and everything, up and down bumps, there's not going to be any way that anything's going to rub up against this, and I'm not close to any heat source. The closest heat source is the exhaust over here, but that's super far away. This looks really good. Now we'll do the same to the other side of the vehicle and we'll move along.

Okay. Now that we've got this side down, we can move on ahead to bleeding the brakes. We'll just check our brake fluid. It looks like we're all the way up just below the maximum, so we'll leave it there for now. Come around here. We'll just release our brake pedal at this point. There we are.

Now the next thing we'd want to do, just open up the master cylinder cap so it's broken free. It doesn't have to be completely off or anything. You don't need stuff getting in there, crudding things up a little bit on you. Then you'll come back here and you're going to open up a bleeder screw. Start with the area farthest from the master cylinder, which would be the right rear on this particular application. We're just going to open up our bleeder screw.

At this point you can either wait for it to gravity bleed, which would essentially mean we're just letting gravity force the fluid down to the lowest point, which would be right around here, the master cylinder would be the highest point. You can tap on it if you've got a gloved finger. You want to wait until fluid comes out. Or maybe you have access to something like this. This is just a little vacuum. You put this tip on your bleeder screw and it will help it along. Put that on there until you can feel fluid start to come out.

Now we'll just give this a second. All right, looks like we've got a pretty good trickle going on here, going down into our catch bucket. I'm just going to close this up and we'll do the same to the other side. Then we'll go ahead and manual bleed this. That's snug. There we are. That's tight. All right, now we'll just go ahead and do the manual bleed. If you don't know how to do that, you can check out the video on how to do a manual brake bleed on your vehicle. You can even do it by yourself if you had to, easy peasy.

Now we'll just put on our little rubber bleeder screw caps. These just help keep the moisture out of the bleeder screw. Hopefully someday down the line, if you have to open it back up, it won't be too rotted and corroded on you. That's on there. Grab our wheel. I'm just going to wheel it up my leg. Cool. We've got our lug nuts. We're just going to snug up these lug nuts. There we are. Bring it down, torque them up. Here we go. We're going to torque these down to 94 foot pounds with our torque wrench. Go around again. There we are. Do the same to the other side of the vehicle.

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Tools needed for replacement:

    General Tools

  • Hammer
  • Jack Stands
  • Ratchet Strap
  • Floor Jack

  • Materials, Fluids, and Supplies

  • Rust Penetrant

  • Pliers, Cutters & misc Wrenches

  • Pliers
  • Side Cutters

  • Ratchets & Related

  • Socket Extensions
  • Torque Wrench
  • Ratchet
  • 1/2 Inch Breaker Bar

  • Screwdrivers & Related

  • Pry Bar
  • Flat Blade Screwdriver

  • Sockets - Metric

  • 15mm Socket
  • 19mm Socket
  • 8mm Socket
  • 30mm Socket
  • 10mm Socket
  • 11mm Socket

  • Specialty Tools

  • Bubble Flare Kit

  • Wrenches - Metric

  • 11mm Flare Wrench

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