Is there a LCA bolt removal guide? SEIZED UP! - Jeep Commander Forums: Jeep Commander Forum
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post #1 of 11 (permalink) Old 03-30-2016, 10:41 AM Thread Starter
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Question Is there a LCA bolt removal guide? SEIZED UP!

I've read online the horror stories about them, people in non-salt states claim they have no issues... but no one seems to show the process of "cutting it out", "heating/torching", "sawzall"...

I'm in the middle of a 2.5 lift and got driverside done with no issues, but passenger side bottom bolt will not budge. The nut is loose and comes off, but bolt is seized in sleeve. I've used an entire can of PB, 6 hours of prying, hammering, cussing, sledgehammer, you name it.

Going to buy an air hammer tonight and try that...

So anyone know a good write up on how to get the seized bolt out, and not just a basic one saying "hit with hammer, it will eventually come out"

Thanks in advance!
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post #2 of 11 (permalink) Old 03-30-2016, 10:53 AM Thread Starter
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Just a thought... would I be able to just use spring compressors to drop the top of the strut down enough to install the spacers, then slide back in, this way I don't need to worry about the bottom bolt at all?
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post #3 of 11 (permalink) Old 03-30-2016, 11:00 AM
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Last I heard there are NO strut yokes in the parts system, the part that attaches to the bottom of the strut and straddles the driveshaft and the LCA bolt goes through. So if you damage that strut yoke you may have to wait 6 months to get a new one.

I live on the edge of the Salt Belt in Maryland, we get a week or two a year of snow here and they salt the roads. My LCA bolts were rusted in and could NOT be pounded out with a hammer, but I did get them out by doing this:

I put a wrench (21m or 22mm?) on the head of the LCA Bolt and turned it back and forth as far as it could go without damaging the anti-rotation tab on it. Then pounded on it with a sledge, and got it to move a 1/2", sprayed in some more PB blaster, then twisted it again back forth with a wrench, repeated the pounding, PB blaster and twisting with a wrench again, to move it out 1/2" at a time.

It took a lot of torque to turn the bolt at first, but it loosened up more and more as things progressed.

Twisting the bolt head with a wrench will break up the corrosion enough to free it up just enough to hammer it out 1/4"-1/2" at a time, the PB blaster will penetrate more and more.

When I put it back together, I slathered Anti-Seize all over the bolt to prevent it from seizing again.

Considering how much more mild my corrosion conditions are compared to some of the bigger salt states, this may NOT work for all Commanders/Grand Cherokees with rusted/seized LCA bolts. Some you may NOT be able to turn the LCA bolt head at all with a wrench, try a strong air impact hammer, try banging on one end of the bolt with a hammer while you use the air impact wrench to twist it, etc.


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post #4 of 11 (permalink) Old 03-30-2016, 11:03 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rexx66 View Post
Just a thought... would I be able to just use spring compressors to drop the top of the strut down enough to install the spacers, then slide back in, this way I don't need to worry about the bottom bolt at all?
That and removing the upper control arm completely, I "think" works. Disconnecting the Sway Bar end links is necessary, its in the FSM, even if you do it by the book, that is why it is in the book. You will see, disconnecting the sway bar end links on both sides will let the lower control arm drop another 4".

But, try my solution of turning the bolt with a wrench to break free some of the corrosion and going back and hitting it with a hammer first. It worked for me and I got the LCA bolt out completely without damaging anything.


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post #5 of 11 (permalink) Old 03-30-2016, 11:11 AM Thread Starter
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Used a pickle fork on UCA, ball joint is loosened, End link bolts are out and disconnected, I've tried another jack under the LCA to raise, lower in various positions to relieve pressure, add pressure, hammered front and back, tried spinning the bolt head side with tab on it, socket just pops off
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post #6 of 11 (permalink) Old 03-30-2016, 12:36 PM
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If you haven't rounded off the corners of the bolt head, a box end wrench will apply the force more directly and prevent it from popping off the bolt head as easily. I think I hit the wrench with a sledge at first to break it free in rotation, after that it can be done by hand.

The UCA should be disconnected from the steering knuckle completely, letting the LCA to drop without resistance from the UCA, as well, it will provide the room to remove the entire strut cartridge.

Raising and lowering the LCA with a Jack, while I can see that helping in removing a bolt that was already broke free, your's is seized directly to the inner bushing sleeve, the pressure from the weight of LCA doesn't amount to a hill of beans against the force to break the bolt free of the corrosion seizing. It was a worth a try, but I think after trying its just wasting time.


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post #7 of 11 (permalink) Old 03-31-2016, 09:55 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mongo View Post
If you haven't rounded off the corners of the bolt head, a box end wrench will apply the force more directly and prevent it from popping off the bolt head as easily. I think I hit the wrench with a sledge at first to break it free in rotation, after that it can be done by hand.

The UCA should be disconnected from the steering knuckle completely, letting the LCA to drop without resistance from the UCA, as well, it will provide the room to remove the entire strut cartridge.

Raising and lowering the LCA with a Jack, while I can see that helping in removing a bolt that was already broke free, your's is seized directly to the inner bushing sleeve, the pressure from the weight of LCA doesn't amount to a hill of beans against the force to break the bolt free of the corrosion seizing. It was a worth a try, but I think after trying its just wasting time.

Another night of cussing, hammering, PB, air hammer, impacting, heating with torch, and all I got was the ear on the bolt broken off, but the bolt barely spins now inside the rubber...

Tonight I am thinking it's sawzall time to at least get the fork off and pull the strut, not sure how to get the bushing out but I guess I'll figure it out when I get to that point... wanting to feel like I accomplished at least something after 3 nights until 1 am in the garage..
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post #8 of 11 (permalink) Old 03-31-2016, 01:42 PM
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Arbor press, like most bushings. If you don't have access to one, or one of the Big C-Clamp type bushing/ball joint tools..... .....once you've got the LCA separated from the strut, you can remove the LCA completely. Buy a new bushing and bolt, take it to a machine shop and they should be able to replace the bushing for you.

Check the availability of fork/yoke the bolt goes through. Last I heard they were on back-order for months, you break that trying to cut off the bolt, you may find you're waiting months before you can get a new one to put it all back together.


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post #9 of 11 (permalink) Old 03-31-2016, 03:09 PM
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I ended up cutting mine out with a sawzall. But yes you can get the spacers in without removing the LCA bolt if you have room to drop everything to it's max and use spring compressors to get it back in.

Mine:2008 Grand Cherokee Overland 3.0 CRD...OME HD lift, JBA control arms, AEV Onyx Salta w/ 265/70/17 General Grabbers.
Hers:2007 3.7 Commander Graystone
2.25"RR lift, monroe 171377 struts, monroe 58646 shocks, JBA 6.7 control arms, Moto Metal MO970 w/ 265/70/17 Hercules Terra Trac ATII
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post #10 of 11 (permalink) Old 04-03-2016, 08:52 PM
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See my post with a tip....I didn't remove the LCA bolts.
https://www.jeepcommander.com/forums/...ad.php?t=53921

Last edited by MuckSavage; 04-04-2016 at 05:37 AM.
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