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Old 01-01-2021, 06:19 PM #1
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If your front end goes "thunk" every time you hit a bump, spend 14 dollars to fix it

My 2007 4Runner started making a "Thunk" noise every time it hit a bump. It had the original struts and shocks on it so I replaced with some Bilstiens. The thunk was still there. I randomly came across a video on youtube with a guy with the same problem. He replaced his front end sway bar bushings and fixed it.

I just replaced mine, which were apparently the originals after 167,000 miles. Its only a four bolt job but dang... it took me an hour with an 18 inch breaker bar to remove the 4 bolts. I spent 14 dollars at AutoZone for new bushings and the truck sounds completely different.

I did some searching on this forum and did not find this answer to my problem. Hopefully this helps someone out.
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Old 01-01-2021, 09:58 PM #2
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Great thread. I think I have the same issue. In thought it could be a wheel bearing but they seem fine. I get a clunk occasionally from the right front wheel over bumps.
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Old 01-02-2021, 01:46 AM #3
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I don't have a front sway bar any more but the rear is still installed and I get a clunk back there from time to time making right or left turns with a bump in it. Might be my issue.
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Old 01-02-2021, 11:30 AM #4
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pretty common issue on lots of vehicles. i had a 1998 jeep cherokee as my daily for a long time & it did the same thing. replaced the sway bar bushings & fixed the clunk 100%.

poly s/b bushings are next on my list for the 4runner after replacing the xreas with KYB shocks.

nit pick: 4runners dont have struts...
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Old 01-02-2021, 02:38 PM #5
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My '03 was clunking couple years ago and I found the stud on P/S broken. Replaced it and new bushings and no more clunk.
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Old 01-02-2021, 03:38 PM #6
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That just fixed my excursion. Thanks!!
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Old 01-03-2021, 09:54 AM #7
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I've got a similar issue, I was leaning towards it being upper control arm related since it's not every bump and sometimes on turns.

Could be shocks as well I guess, not sure when or if they were ever replaced on mine
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Old 01-03-2021, 11:30 AM #8
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Mr. Dobalina, why did you need to use the pry bar, and what was stuck? Getting ready to do this on mine. Did you take pictures?
Thanks!
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Old 01-03-2021, 11:59 AM #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RickF View Post
Mr. Dobalina, why did you need to use the pry bar, and what was stuck? Getting ready to do this on mine. Did you take pictures?
Thanks!
Rick
he didnt say he used a pry bar, he used a breaker bar (a long handled socket tool)... which means the bolts were stuck.

if you run into stuck bolts a breaker bar is a good idea but using some heat from a propane or MAP torch on the bolts will help a lot & usually frees them without needing a breaker bar.
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Old 01-04-2021, 10:46 AM #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by firebirdguy View Post
he didnt say he used a pry bar, he used a breaker bar (a long handled socket tool)... which means the bolts were stuck.

if you run into stuck bolts a breaker bar is a good idea but using some heat from a propane or MAP torch on the bolts will help a lot & usually frees them without needing a breaker bar.
Yep - the bolts were rust welded in there. I hit them with a bunch of PB Blaster. I did not have a torch. I was really afraid I was going to shear them towards the end and then have to deal with that problem.

Tons of videos on you tube. Without fighting with the rusted bolts, it may have been one of the simplest fixes on my rig with the biggest return.
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Old 01-04-2021, 10:48 AM #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xtremewlr View Post
I don't have a front sway bar any more but the rear is still installed and I get a clunk back there from time to time making right or left turns with a bump in it. Might be my issue.
I am going to replace all of the rear bushings as well this upcoming weekend. The kit is 24 bucks.
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Old 01-04-2021, 11:00 AM #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JamesV View Post
I've got a similar issue, I was leaning towards it being upper control arm related since it's not every bump and sometimes on turns.

Could be shocks as well I guess, not sure when or if they were ever replaced on mine
Here's a tip on replacing your shocks. Don't mess with a spring compressor for the front end.

You can decompress the front spring while it is still in the truck by using this method:

Tacoma Coil Over Shock Disassembly without a Spring Compressor - YouTube

If you still have your original shocks and if they are rusted as mine were, just take a skill saw to them and chop off the top center bolt WHILE YOU HAVE A FLOORJACK SUPPORTING THEM UP FRONT as per the video.

I added two weekends to my job because I was constant spraying penetrating oil, fighting them with channel locks, my buddy torched the nuts and set the rubber grommets on fire.... Shit show. I used a new metal blade on each one ad cut through them in minutes. This will be my go to going forward.
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Old 01-04-2021, 11:44 AM #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr_Dobalina View Post
Here's a tip on replacing your shocks. Don't mess with a spring compressor for the front end.

You can decompress the front spring while it is still in the truck by using this method:

Tacoma Coil Over Shock Disassembly without a Spring Compressor - YouTube

If you still have your original shocks and if they are rusted as mine were, just take a skill saw to them and chop off the top center bolt WHILE YOU HAVE A FLOORJACK SUPPORTING THEM UP FRONT as per the video.

I added two weekends to my job because I was constant spraying penetrating oil, fighting them with channel locks, my buddy torched the nuts and set the rubber grommets on fire.... Shit show. I used a new metal blade on each one ad cut through them in minutes. This will be my go to going forward.
good advice if you are going to re-use the springs... but for original high mile shocks that most likely wont reuse the springs, there is no reason to compress the springs or mess with the big center bolt on 4runners & tacomas etc.

the entire shock will come out by simply removing the 3 small bolts on the top & the one big bolt on the bottom. the top center bolt keeps the springs in place, then just throw away the entire shock & replace with a new shock that has the springs already installed like KYB. or if using a separate shock & springs like bilsteins etc, then reverse the procedure shown above to compress the spring or rent a spring compressor tool for free or pay ~$20ea to a shop to install the springs.

thats beauty of this design, you can remove the entire shock/spring with just the 3 top bolts & not mess with compressing the spring unless you are reusing the spring or installing new ones. & aside from burning rubber parts, a propane/map torch is a savior for rusted bolts/nuts & most will break free without getting everything around it so hot it catches rubber on fire. impact guns are great too since the shock helps break them free.
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