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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Howdy all!

Just as an introduction, I have a 1999 XJ with a very mild 3" lift. The control arms are stock and recently I have been getting a popping noise when coming to a stop or starting out. I do understand that I will have to replace the control arm bushings. That being said, I am a part time employee at O'Reilly's so I can get all 8 of the bushings cheap. I have decided to press out the old bushings on the existing control arms due to the fact that they're in good shape. I have the necessary tools and equipment (ball joint press, come along, etc) to do the job.

My question is this, I have searched multiple forums (including this one) and the tube of you and get mixed signals. Is it best to replace the arms (I know to do them one at a time) with the vehicle jacked up and suspension unloaded, or with the vehicle on all 4 wheels? Logically to me it would seem that with the vehicle on all 4 wheels the weight would assist in keeping the axle from moving around a lot when one removes each arm. I see a lot of videos and have read a lot of posts with people doing this job with the suspension unloaded and they have to do all sorts of contortions to get the axle to line up correctly.

I have a very narrow window of time available (2 days) to do this job and was looking for the most expedient way to get it done.

Thanks in advance for any help given.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
So..... Put it on jack stands and let the axle hang? Then use jacks and come alongs to realign the axle. Seems counter intuitive. Wouldn't the weight of the vehicle over the axle help keep it in place when only removing one control arm?
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Update: I got all 8 bushings replaced (took me several hours to get the bushing out of the driver side axle mount, but it did come after a while). I ended up doing the job with the vehicle on the ground and used a come-a-long to hold the axle in place while I removed/replaced each control arm in turn. After replacing all of the bushings I took it out for a test drive and noticed a horrible popping noise from the front end driver side when turning. A little research led me to the track bar mount. I torqued all of the nuts with a 1/2 inch breaker bar and eliminated the popping. The little Jeep rides like a new one, I am impressed with the ride quality difference. Thanks to all for the technical advise (even though I used some and not others). It means a lot to have a place to come and discuss problems and seek solutions.
 
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