2013 Chevy Traverse "Lower Bushing" Help


#1

My wife took her 2013 Chevy Traverse to NTB yesterday for an oil change and tire rotation and they advised the “lower bushings” could be moved by hand and badly needed to be replaced. She mentioned it has been driving a little different with a slight vibration. NTB quoted $700+ for parts and labor. I have no experience with suspension repair, or brake repair, but I have replaced the engine on a 1985 firebird twice (what a story) so I know how to work a wrench (and break off bolts, break every vacuum tube in the engine, etc… lol). Is there anyone that knows what needs to be done based on this problem description that would be willing to help me fix this and avoid paying NTB? I am not yet signed off on the lift but figured this would be a perfect opportunity to get signed off. I am happy to provide lunch/beer, a huge thank you, and some $ if needed, and I am willing to get my hands dirty and do the work, I just need someone to tell/show me what to do (and what parts to buy). I appreciate the consideration!
-Ryan


#2

In this context, they mean the lower control arm bushings? If so, here’s a video:

Suspension work is pretty easy, but getting things apart is usually the hard part. If you’ve done engine replacement, I don’t think you have anything to worry about. I’ve rebuilt the front ends of various Chevy trucks I’ve owned over the years. Nothing surprising in there.

(edit: You can get that bushing press tool loaned to you from Autozone, no need to buy. Check for broken parts before you leave the store.)


#3

Probably going to be more economical to replace the control arms and bushings (that model has one internal and one external bushing I believe).

Parts from rock auto are not expensive.

Labor - (yours) at the space is dirt cheap with some help from folks like me. It is a bit time consuming yes.

You will have to have an alignment done (not possible at the space)afterwards & Zach has posted an economical place in the past.


#4

Fast and very reasonable $$$ alignment. Great service from these folks.

https://allianceautoservice.com/


#5

When a vehicle is in serious need of an alignment, as this one will be after parts replacement, it’s clear that the sooner the better, but practically speaking when does it really become an issue, as in how far (mileage), or how fast (speed)?


#6

Marshall,

Tire wear is a good indicator of alignment. Proper inflation (is a key element for tire life)

This car won’t (shouldn’t be) in dire need of an alignment after the work is completed - yes it should be aligned but it wouldn’t be “unsafe” to drive unless you were perhaps Ralph Nader.

Fortunately “most” auto makers seem to make the things that wear out a lot of noise or a lot of unhealthy shaking whilst driving to let the driver know “something” may not be quite right…long before he or she becomes a topic for local traffic/news reports.

They also build the control arms so that if the bushing is shot - the arm doesn’t just “fall off the car” as some repair shops might have you believe (among other garbage)

Ryan here is a pic of a Traverse control arm - the large bushing is most likely the one that has failed and is is mounted in a separate bracket that the arm sticks into (This is identical just larger scale to Photomancer’s 1990 VW that we did a control arm last spring) but for $45-89 (you choose the brand & a grease fitting or not).
traverse arm


#7

And… sadly, not all NTB shops are alike. The staff at the one in Sachse rock. But last time I went to the location on Arapaho, the counter guy wanted me to replace most of my electrical system, when I just wanted a new battery. I politely declined, and took it to my dealership, where they consistently refuse to “fix” things unless they are really broken. They could find no signs of impending doom. And it’s been a couple of years now since.


#8

No all shops nor all dealers are alike but too many are dirty rotten scoundrels.

Transmission, tire, brake, muffler, & dearlerships are typical pond scum, along with many others.

It is nice to hear about your good experience !


#9

This was at the sachse NTB.
Here is the quote.


#10

Hmm. Maybe the jerk from the Arapaho store got transferred to sachse. Bummer.


#11

Yeah, that’s been my usual experience. My first car was a 10 year old 1971 Datsun 240Z. Learned to identify most “things that just broke” owning that car, since it oiled pretty much drive to my mechanics place on autopilot, needing something replaced or repaired. And learned to weed out good mechanics from bad in the process.

I would probably not be going to a dealership now, but my mechanic of about 25 years retired.


#12

Ryan,

I would hope that the $127.12 is for the entire control arm, but I’m sure it is just for the large rear bushing in the mount that has two bolts that mount it to the vehicle…sad, when you can “do it yourself” and replace the complete arm, including the ball joint and the other bushing for about $50 +/- (granted the smaller bushing lasts for a long ass time under typical driving conditions) and a little help from the great folks in automotive.

Even more sad, is knowing that the part NTB would be charging their “retail” for would be sourced from Autozone or Oreily’s - i.e. nothing spectacular that should command that $127 price tag.


#13

Ok, I have survived the holidays and I now need to get this work done on my wife’s car. I am looking to buy the parts this week and hopefully someone will be able to help me on Saturday at DMS to do the install.
Can anyone @TLAR maybe confirm based on that quote from NTB what parts I need to buy from the local parts store? I appreciate the help in advance.


#14

LMAOROTFL :blankspace:


#15

@indytruks138

This sounds about right but without actually inspecting your vehicle prior, there is a small margin of error; particularly if the initial diagnosis is perceived to be not quite on the level.


#16

The biggest trick was pressing the rubber bushing into the the control arm. If Tom hadn’t been there to show me how - it while he knew how to do it, it’s a trick with the special tool.

As mention above in the thread, the trick on control arms is breaking the free. If they are being replaced and you don’t have to worry about not damaging the rubber boot, then it is easy using the “Big Fork”.

Automotive is probably one of the places at DMS you can easily recover a years dues in savings and a few hours of work and learning. Just the savings in all the tools you don’t have to buy is significant.


#17

Words of wisdom, Lloyd…words of wisdom!


#18

I can bring the Traverse up to DMS any night this week after work if someone who has the knowledge is willing to meet me there and look at the suspension to confirm what needs to be purchased. I think that would be best if anyone is willing to meet me there. I am 100% on board to do all the wrenching and work needed, I just need someone with the experience and willingness to tell me/show what needs to be done.


#19

Hush your mouth! :slight_smile:


#20

We can meet weds evening around 830 to take a look at what it needs and “make a list”…
I am tied up this weekend tho.