A step by step guide to installing a front sway bar on a Subaru BRZ, Scion FR-S or Toyota GT86
How long will it take to replace the front sway bar
The front sway bar is a little more difficult than the rear sway bar install. But it isn’t very hard at all. The only reason it takes longer is because you have to remove a couple of trays, so it still won’t be a problem. If you are performing this upgrade yourself and you have the proper tools then this job shouldn’t take more than 1-1/2 hours.
Tools required for the job
To install the sway bar on your BRZ/FR-S/GT86, you’ll need these tools:
- Jack Stands
- Car Jack
- Lug wrench
- Socket Wrench
- 12mm wrench
- Screw Driver
- 6mm allen wrench
- 10mm socket
- 12mm socket
- 14mm socket
- 17mm socket
- 19mm socket
Step by Step
Once your BRZ/FR-S/G86 is on jack-stands, remove the tires.
Loosen the back bolts of the bumper splash guard until it drops down. Then remove the rear under tray (11 bolts to remove using a 10mm socket). Once the rear tray is off, remove the front under tray. There are 8 bolts to remove using a 12mm socket, and 7 plastic fasteners that can be popped off with a screwdriver (be careful not to break the fasteners).
Loosen the lower portion of the endlink (leave the top portion connected to the shock) with a 17mm socket. Once loose, disconnect the endlink from the sway bar.
Use a 14mm socket wrench to loosen the subframe braces (4 on each side). Hold the middle of the sway bar with one hand while you loosen, so it doesn’t smack you in the face.
Take the sway bar off. It will still be connected to the subframe braces.
Take the sway bar mounts off. A 12mm wrench and a 14mm socket will be required. There is a space on the underside of the brace to fit a socket wrench if you have any trouble. There are two bolts on each of the mounts, these can be a little tough. Make sure you keep the original mounts, you’ll need them!
Using the supplied lubricant, grease the new sway bar bushings. Put the sway bar bushings on the new sway bar with the slit facing front (the same way the OE bushings are facing).
Using the original mounts, attach the sway bar to the subframe braces. Put weight on the mounts to get started. The slots for the bolts are small so be careful not to cross thread. Tighten the bolts until they are very snug.
Take the stock endlinks completely off using a 17mm socket. Note: If the car has a high number of miles, there is a worst case scenario where the endlink will spin and not screw off. If this happens to you, use a 6mm allen wrench on the opposite side to get it off.
Put the new endlinks on, matching the length of the stock endlinks. Use the supplied washers on the outer side of the new endlink. A 19mm socket wrench will be required. Position the lower end at an angle to help install the sway bar.
Install the sway bar. Hold the middle of the bar with one hand to avoid it smacking you in the face. Tighten the subframe braces back to the subframe using a 14mm socket wrench.
Place the supplied lateral locks about an 1/8 of an inch on the inside of the sway bar mounts. Tighten them using the included allen wrench.
Attach the bottom of the endlinks to the desired tuning slot of the sway bar and tighten with a 19mm socket wrench. (The inner slot is the soft setting and the outer slot is the hard setting.) These are a little tricky, you might have to wiggle them in. Note: If the vehicle is at stock height the endlinks should go in fine. If your vehicle is lowered it will be a tighter fit and you may need shorter endlinks.
Attach the trays and splash guard back. First the front under tray, then the rear under tray, and finally attach the splash guard.
IMPORTANT: Adjust the endlinks to avoid preload. Make sure the middle is loose with NO tension. You should be able to finger turn it with very little effort. If you begin to feel tension, go back the other way.
Put the tires back on, and you’re ready to go.
Adjust the softness of the bar
To switch settings, just remove the bottom attachment on the endlink and switch to the desired setting.