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Discussion Starter #1
I need to bounce something off you guys. I have a 2006 Focus Wagon ZXW that has a damaged Left Rear Trailing Arm. My daughter was in an accident this week and I'm sure the insurance company is going to total it.

I was able to limp it home from the accident...barely. Most of the body damage is on the left rear quarter panel and left rear door. There is mechanical damage on the left rear suspension, the wheel is pushed forward about 2 inches. This afternoon, I took off the wheel to get a closer look at the damage and saw that the trailing arm is buckled. Everything else "appears" ok, I think the rubber bushings took most of the deflection. I think I can get by with just replacing the trailing arm, but will look at the other bushing when I have it all apart.

So I guess my question is how bad of a job is it to replace the arm, assuming everything else is ok? Doesn't look too difficult and I think I'll be able to re-use everything else, the spindle and hub assy. etc. Of course after the arm is replaced it will need alignment.

I'm including a couple of pics, provided the URLs cooperate:
 

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From the picture you posted your vehicle looks to be fairly rust free. That can the biggest issue in removing any suspension parts as in the rust belt (Im in New England) the fasteners/bushings tend to become seized together and practically everything needs to be cut/torched out.

Keep in mind that the rear trailing arm is really the 'heart' of the rear suspension and practically everthing else is attached to it: outer end of the rear lower control arm (with the spring on it), outer ends of the front/rear upper control arms, lower end of the shock absorber, and the drum/hub assembly (4 bolts). When working on the rear suspension I alway support the car with jackstands under the rear crossmember. You then need to put a floor jack under the outboard end of the lower control arm, unbolt the outboard end from the trailing arm (1 bolt) and carefully lower the jack relieving the rear spring pressure. After that you can simply unbolt everthing else from the trailing arm and remove it.

Good luck
Paul
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Paul,

Yes, rust free. Most of the painted members are still black. It has seen mild winters as far as salt goes. Hardly any snow when I lived in North Mississippi and MgCl₂ here in Colorado for road treatment. I've been soaking threads with PB Blaster for the past couple days.

I've been able to loosen the stub axle and drum assy. The backing plate took a little more effort, but I was able to get it off as well as the parking brake cable. I had to break the metal union/clip that joins the front parking brake cable to the shorter rear section. I'm assuming I can buy another union. The brake line is still attached, I think I can replace everything without disconnecting the fluid line and not need to bleed the brakes. I'll have to slit the tab on the trailing arm where the rubber hose attaches to the arm. A good job for a cut-off wheel.

I couldn't find a rental coil spring compressor that would work, so while supporting the X-member in the center and the lower control arm right under the coil spring with blocks, it looks like now I should be able to unbolt the shock, upper and lower control arms from the trailing arm then remove the two bolts from the front trailing arm bushing that mounts to the frame rail or pan.

I've found the trailing arm in Florida for $125, which I didn't think was too bad. Once I get the trailing arm off and inspect the other bushings, I'll have a better feel for what else was damaged. But so far, it looks like the trailing arm took the brunt of the damage.

Hopefully I'll make more progress tomorrow.
 

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As you found, no spring compressor required....Once back together, you'll want to get a 4 wheel alignment= set the front & rear toe. zero toe for the front w/ .008-.010 rear toe per side.
 

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New trailing arms are only available from Ford (no aftermarket) and go for about $135 so if this is what you are getting for $125 you are doing great. Used trailing arms in good condition on ebay are about $60-$90.

You shouldnt need any spring compressor if you support the lower control arm at its outboard end with a floor jack remove the outboard bushing bolt and lower the jack/control arm to relieve/remove the spring.

Take lots of pics and post your progess.

Good luck
Paul
 

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Discussion Starter #7
The aftermath of yesterday. Unable to compress the spring (with the loaner tool from the parts store) enough to get it out. I was tired and hungry so I quit for the day.

Backing plate is off the trailing arm, didn't have to disconnect any brake lines but did break the union that connects the parking brake cable that attaches to the rear shoe. I've only been able to find this union if I buy the short parking brake cable. It's the least expensive part out of the whole mix.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
I was finally able to remove the coil spring. I disconnected the sway bar from the control arm and the left side frame mount. This allowed the control arm to be free and drop down far enough to pull out the coil spring. I wanted to be able to check the control arm and make sure it wasn't bent or damaged. It looks good.

The lower shock bolt and the control arm/trailing arm connection came off without much trouble.

Both of the front control arms were another story. The lower outer bolt was rusted solid, I couldn't get it to budge at all. I unbolted the lower arm's inner connection and that freed the lower arm. I was able to loosen the top outer bolt, but the rubber bushing keep spinning once the threads came out of the nut. Using a cutoff when, I cut the top bolt. Once that was cut all I needed to do was remove the two bolts attaching the front of the trailing arm to the body. The trailing arm dropped right off.

Sorry for the crappy pictures and lack of mark up.

I'll start calling the places that I've found that might have the trailing arm tomorrow. Probably call a local dealer too, just to see how their prices match the dealer in Florida, maybe I'll get luck and they'll offer to match the price!

Ball park prices for parts totals about $350-$400 now that I need to buy the trailing arm and both front control arms.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
The bolt was seized where the lower outer arm connects to the trailing arm (arrow 4)

I used a cutoff wheel to cut the bolt on the top outer arm to trailing arm connection (arrow 3).

Both bolts at the inner connections for the upper and lower arms unscrewed without much trouble (opposite of arrows 3 &4).

Once the sway bar was disconnected, the coil spring came right out gently. I didn't have to go looking in my neighbor's yard, ha.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
The shock still looks good, but I thought while I had everything off I would replace it too. If I can figure out how to access the top bolt. The wagon rear shocks are nothing like what you non-wagon guys have. At least from the videos I've seen, for the non-wagons, there's a single stud that is accessible from the inside of the car. Not the case for the wagon. The top mount bolt is tucked up in the heat shield somewhere.

That may be a job I'll pay someone to replace both rears. It was riding ok and there isn't any leakage from the shock, so I may end up leaving it alone.
 

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Yea, as you've found the wagon rear shocks are one off's.....
 

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... The wagon rear shocks are nothing like what you non-wagon guys have. At least from the videos I've seen, for the non-wagons, there's a single stud that is accessible from the inside of the car. Not the case for the wagon. The top mount bolt is tucked up in the heat shield somewhere.

That may be a job I'll pay someone to replace both rears...
No, do not pay someone. No need to. I did my wagon rear shocks a few years ago and vaguely remember that side (1) not do-able using ratchet or wrench near the top bolt (2) very DO-able after adding several ratchet extensions AND sliding this "series of long extensions" thru the (top) of the heat shield/s. I probably had 24 inches or more of extensions. I think the other side (passenger side) needed extensions also, but not as much.

I will guess that your 2007 is the same or very similar to my 2004: with rear shock-mount-bolt configuration.

BTW I used KYB GR-2 shocks.

Gd Luck
 

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Discussion Starter #14
All parts are on order, controls arms from Advance Auto will be here by the end of this week. I ordered the trailing arm and a couple of bolts from Parts.com, fulfilled by Sunrise Ford in California. I called Sunrise when I got home from work and the Parts Mgr. thought I should receive the shipment by mid next week.

I can get some of the stuff put on this weekend. I think I'll probably try to access the shock in the mean time and get the brakes shoes on both sides. I think I have enough to keep me busy for a couple days anyway.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
The picture(s) below show the control arms, the image with two control arms.

I'm attaching two images of control arms. The top image showing two arm, the upper arm (not in plastic) is what I took off the Focus, the lower (in plastic) is the replacement. When I first started looking for replacements for the upper arm, I immediately noticed that NONE of the images I found looked anything like the arm I removed which is fairly straight but with a slight curve to it. All of the replacement arms I found had a significantly larger curvature. Initially I dismissed it as potentially, image doesn't look like actual part type issue.

But, even every Ford parts diagram (bottom image) showed the part with the larger curvature.

I checked the right hand side that wasn't damaged in the accident, and it looks the same as the left hand side which I had removed. Again, this is the arm in the top image that is not wrapped in plastic.

Comparing the two arms, the center - center distances are the same. As far as I can tell, there is plenty of room for the replacement arm to fit without any interference for the full range of motion, so I am going to assume that the differences in the part geometry was due to some engineering design change.

I've had replacement parts look slightly difference than the original, but never anything to this degree.

Any thoughts?
 

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The extra bend, as long as the mounting distance between wholes is the same, may be for clearance issues. Yes I agree, I would question the change just to make sure.
 

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I'm attaching a couple pics of side by side comparisons of the old vs new part. I had typed in a lengthy description, but then received some invalid token error and all the text is gone.

Don't have time to rewrite now, maybe later. But in a nut shell. From Advance Auto (source of replacement part) and a local Ford dealer, neither place has a paper/electronic trail documenting any changes for the replacement part.

EVERYTHING that I have found indicates that the replacement part despite the significant geometry change is the correct replacement. Very odd...the left and right upper control arms on my vehicle are the same.
 

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I'm attaching a couple pics of side by side comparisons of the old vs new part. I had typed in a lengthy description, but then received some invalid token error and all the text is gone.

Don't have time to rewrite now, maybe later. But in a nut shell. From Advance Auto (source of replacement part) and a local Ford dealer, neither place has a paper/electronic trail documenting any changes for the replacement part.

EVERYTHING that I have found indicates that the replacement part despite the significant geometry change is the correct replacement. Very odd...the left and right upper control arms on my vehicle are the same.
My 2015 has that new camber arm you are worried about. Never seen the other type you showed that looks cylindrical in shape.

Sent from my LM-V405 using Tapatalk
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Googling the P/N on the upper control arm that I removed from my Focus:
98ag-5500-bf

https://www.google.com/search?biw=1600&bih=777&tbm=isch&sa=1&ei=2-8TXOvCFsO_jwSOhbXwDA&q=98ag-5500-bf&oq=98ag-5500-bf&gs_l=img.3..35i39.523.523..823...0.0..0.180.180.0j1......0....1..gws-wiz-img.RSDB_-GBcAs

Shows many hits with the control arm I similar to what I removed. None are USA site, but Europe or Russian.



This Russian site even calls it Ford America Focus
http://евроавто.рф/parts/used/model=2893969874/5723831

Maybe there were Soviet folks coming over to the North America working on the assembly line. Some of them had been taking out Ford Focus ZXW parts daily as they left work from the Russian factory and brought them over to the US. Kinda like the really old Johnny Cash song about a guy that took Caddy parts home and was going to build his own Caddy!
 

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Discussion Starter #20
So... I am off work today and had planned on taking a shot at removing the shocks. I dug out my 24 inch extension, loosened the heat shield which gave me enough room to work. The shocks really weren't that bad after all. The heat shield is in the way on the left side. The fuel fill tube was in the way on the right side, but as mentioned in a previous post, using extensions is the key.

After removing both shocks, I decided to replace the right side upper and lower control arms as well. I headed back down to Advance Auto, they had the shocks but not the control arms. I picked up the shocks and ordered the control arms which would be in later in the afternoon. While back at home installing the shocks went pretty quickly. During the install I received a call from Advanced Auto and was told the control arms were in already, wow, that was quick! It had to be less than an hour after I placed the order.

I had ordered the left side control arms earlier in the week and and received them yesterday, so using those arms, I replace the right side upper and lower control arms. I had a lot of trouble getting the lower arm installed and found that if I jacked up the rear trailing arm, that really helped with alignment in order to get the bolts started. Then I was able to tighten all the bolts and lower the right side back down on blocks.

I am now just waiting on the left side trailing arm which will ship out Monday from Sunrise Ford, Fontana, California, arriving in Colorado mid to late next week.

About the pictures below. The slight bend that I noticed in the left upper control is not normal. Once I had the upper and lower control arms removed from the right side, I could tell how bad the left side arms were. The lower one I had to replace because I was unable to remove it from the trailing arm, plus it was bent pretty bad. See the picture showing the damaged trailing arm with the lower control arm still attached. I have a new lower control arm laying next to the bend arm that shows the damage.

BUT what I also realized is that the slight bend that was a secondary concern was actually damage. I have a side by side comparison of the right had upper control arm (straight) next to the left upper control, which I thought was undamaged, but it was damaged in the accident after all.
 

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