2003 SRT DD

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JeremyJ
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Re: 2003 SRT DD

Post by JeremyJ » Thu Jan 03, 2019 10:56 am

Here's what I'm talking about:

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You can see the strut is pushing down really hard on the boot. It's basically stuck there. I've never had this happen before.
02 base -> 05 SRT ACR -> 96 sedan -> 99 R/T coupe -> 02 R/T -> 03 SRT

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Re: 2003 SRT DD

Post by MyNeonSaysHi » Thu Jan 03, 2019 12:11 pm

Funny this happened to me when doing my coilovers. Was a PITA Supposedly it only happens if you have one corner up. But I had the entire front end up. I lucked out and it didn't tear the boot. You are supposed to undo the sway bar endlinks and that releases tension on the control arm so the control arm can drop. I take the caliper off for more wiggle space. Don't like that brake line being in my way either

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Re: 2003 SRT DD

Post by occasional demons » Thu Jan 03, 2019 12:50 pm

Depending on strut travel, I have had to, in addition to removing the sway bar links and pushing it down, use a pry bar between the frame and the LCA to pry it down lower. Especially when getting the ball joint stud out of/back into the knuckle if removing the knuckle.

I love my Impreza when it comes to axles shafts. There is enough compression in them, you don't have to go to the lengths you do on a Mopar. At least someone had smart engineers that day.
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Re: 2003 SRT DD

Post by Neon4Life » Thu Jan 03, 2019 1:15 pm

You didn't have to seperate the strut from the knuckle to change out the axle. Trust me, I've done it dozens of times myself.

Next time just make sure the tie rod is off the knuckle and pop the control arm ball joint apart from the knuckle and the entire strut knuckle is free to move as you need. Also saves you from needing an alignment.

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Re: 2003 SRT DD

Post by occasional demons » Thu Jan 03, 2019 3:12 pm

^^^ This.

If you don't want the assy hanging in your way, it's only three nuts at the top, and it's a clear shot.

The downside is if you get a pesky tie rod stud that just doesn't want to pop out, but usually that's not an issue.
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Re: 2003 SRT DD

Post by JeremyJ » Thu Jan 03, 2019 4:40 pm

MyNeonSaysHi wrote:
Thu Jan 03, 2019 12:11 pm
Supposedly it only happens if you have one corner up. But I had the entire front end up. I lucked out and it didn't tear the boot. You are supposed to undo the sway bar endlinks and that releases tension on the control arm so the control arm can drop.
I only have one corner up in the picture. I'm going to lift the other side and see if that helps. If it doesn't, then I'll undo the sway bar and see if that does the trick. I'm probably going to replace that axle, so I have to wait until it comes in before I start messing with it again.
02 base -> 05 SRT ACR -> 96 sedan -> 99 R/T coupe -> 02 R/T -> 03 SRT

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Re: 2003 SRT DD

Post by occasional demons » Thu Jan 03, 2019 7:45 pm

Dropping the sway bar makes a difference, because it keeps the LCA's from being easily pushed down. The thicker the bar, the worse it is.

Even the ES/SE/SXT bar is tough to move by hand/pry bar. The first time I messed with the front suspension, it wasn't long before the endlinks came off.
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Re: 2003 SRT DD

Post by JeremyJ » Fri Jan 04, 2019 10:22 am

Yeah, it makes sense. This car has the PT front bar, so it's pretty stiff.
02 base -> 05 SRT ACR -> 96 sedan -> 99 R/T coupe -> 02 R/T -> 03 SRT

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Re: 2003 SRT DD

Post by occasional demons » Fri Jan 04, 2019 12:28 pm

On the Eibach springs, the SRT sway actually raised the front slightly over the SE bar. So I guess it stands to reason the sway bar would also limit the down travel when lifted off the ground. Especially the larger bars.


When I had the Shadow front sway on my Omni , there was no moving anything until it was unbolted. There was also zero body roll. That thing was a beast on the curves, even off camber curves. It easily out handled stock Shelby Chargers. Having the 1.6 engine didn't hurt either, being significantly lighter than the 2.2 set up. It was a cake job with two people lifting the engine/MTX assy into a pick up. Not so much for the 2.2/MTX assy.

It was a bit gutless, but it made up for it in the curves. :twisted:
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Re: 2003 SRT DD

Post by JeremyJ » Mon Jan 07, 2019 11:58 am

I jacked up the other end of car and was able to fight that strut out of the wheel well. I pulled out the driver's axle and it looked pretty bad. I'm pretty sure it's been throwing grease out from a small cut in the boot. I think it was kind of a good thing that I ended up taking it out. I decided to replace the axle seal since it's exposed at this point, but I fucked up when pulling it out. There's a thin metal lip behind it that I pried against a couple of times while getting it out. I did my best to push it back into the correct shape, but it's still just a little bit off.

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I'm pretty sure that lip is only there as a seat for the seal itself, so as long as I can get that seal to sit flush with the opening, I'm not going to worry about it. The seal will keep the fluid in. Now I'm just waiting for the parts to show up so I can get the car back on the road. I also ordered a boost leak tester so I can finally find the source of my power drain. Hopefully it's easy to find.
02 base -> 05 SRT ACR -> 96 sedan -> 99 R/T coupe -> 02 R/T -> 03 SRT

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Re: 2003 SRT DD

Post by MyNeonSaysHi » Mon Jan 07, 2019 11:27 pm

Yikes! I was afraid of that happening when I did my drivers side axle seal on my silver srt-4. I was trying to figure out where to pry to pop the bugger out. Luckily I didn't pry the innards. Great photo though for others to know where to pry. Hopefully it doesn't leak with that new mopar seal in there. Looks lit it shouldn't like you said. Report back on your boost leak test findings

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Re: 2003 SRT DD

Post by Midnight_Rider » Tue Jan 08, 2019 12:53 am

Replacing the axle seals is a good idea while you have everything apart. I had mine replaced at the dealership when I bought new axles a few years back.
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Re: 2003 SRT DD

Post by JeremyJ » Tue Jan 08, 2019 11:29 am

I did some reading on the SRT Forums and I guess it's really common to booger that lip up. As long as the seal gets pushed in flush, it doesn't leak. I'm not worried about it anymore. I'm more concerned about installing the new seal; it looks like it's going to be a pain.
02 base -> 05 SRT ACR -> 96 sedan -> 99 R/T coupe -> 02 R/T -> 03 SRT

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Re: 2003 SRT DD

Post by Neon4Life » Tue Jan 08, 2019 1:55 pm

JeremyJ wrote:I did some reading on the SRT Forums and I guess it's really common to booger that lip up. As long as the seal gets pushed in flush, it doesn't leak. I'm not worried about it anymore. I'm more concerned about installing the new seal; it looks like it's going to be a pain.
It will indeed be a pain to install the new one. Only a pain be because its hard to get the seal started in there perfectly. But once youve got it at least somewhat started its easy.

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Re: 2003 SRT DD

Post by MyNeonSaysHi » Wed Jan 09, 2019 12:41 pm

I think I used a wood block and a hammer. Yeah it is hard to get started. Tight area too

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Re: 2003 SRT DD

Post by JeremyJ » Thu Jan 10, 2019 12:49 pm

My parts are slowly coming in this week. While axles and seals are showing up, a couple of the parts are just for fun. Like Prothane front end links and Depo headlights.

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I can't wait to put everything together.
02 base -> 05 SRT ACR -> 96 sedan -> 99 R/T coupe -> 02 R/T -> 03 SRT

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Re: 2003 SRT DD

Post by JeremyJ » Mon Jan 14, 2019 10:59 am

Call me the axle seal whisperer; that thing went straight in the first try. I tapped it in with a 2x4 and a hammer. The axle popped right in after it and all went well. I had a slightly harder time with the end links, but they eventually went into place.

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Next, I swapped out these terrible headlights. You can see where they used to have eyelids on them.

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I washed the car and snapped some pics. You can kind of see the huge rake this thing has now, with coilovers in the front and one-inch drop springs in the rear.

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The only issue I'm having is a slight rubbing noise from the passenger front. I can't figure out what it is. I jacked the car up and spun the wheel without hearing anything. I pulled the wheel and it's not rubbing anything I could see. I even raised the coilover half an inch on that side and it didn't help. It's not super loud, but it's already bothering me. I don't know if I messed up the caliper somehow or a wheel bearing is going bad, or what. The sound pulsates and sounds slightly creaky. The frequency corresponds to wheel speed and I don't have to be in gear to hear it. The car runs and drives perfectly. I'm stumped.
Last edited by JeremyJ on Mon Jan 14, 2019 1:35 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: 2003 SRT DD

Post by JeremyJ » Mon Jan 14, 2019 11:03 am

Here's a quick under hood shot with the DC brace installed. I'm thinking about selling it. It's in the way of everything and the front braces don't do a lot on these cars. That airbox is in my way, too. I hope to have that removed eventually. Next steps involve replacing the valve cover gasket and boost leak testing.

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Re: 2003 SRT DD

Post by occasional demons » Mon Jan 14, 2019 3:07 pm

JeremyJ wrote:
Mon Jan 14, 2019 11:03 am
It's in the way of everything
Kind of why I never got to motivated to spend money on one. I like to make my cars easier to make any repairs, or just plain clean, not more of a chore.

Granted, it's only like 4 to 6 nuts, depending, but still...
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Re: 2003 SRT DD

Post by MyNeonSaysHi » Mon Jan 14, 2019 3:10 pm

Doing work!
Not sure if you got the silver coated turn signal bulbs for the headlights but I recommend them. I just don't like that orange glow. Looks like you got some blue ones, very nice. http://www.modernperformance.com/produc ... -and-bulbs

Maybe that rubbing noise is the plastic on the fender liner sticking out? Mine rubbed up and it would fray causing a weird noise. I trimeed it up and it got rid of the noise. Yeah I am not a fan of the front strut bar. Weird yours fit. Mine would not fit for some reason after I installed my BC's! Front or rear!
Last edited by MyNeonSaysHi on Mon Jan 14, 2019 3:24 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: 2003 SRT DD

Post by JeremyJ » Mon Jan 14, 2019 3:19 pm

The car has silverstar turn signal bulbs. They light up amber, but have a weird chrome-ish coating on them that looks kind of blue. They're better than regular amber bulbs during the day, but still a little weird. I have the chrome bulbs in the silver car still. I'll probably swap them to this car.

If I ever get a new front bar, it will be the Performance Autowerks bar, like the rear bar that's already in the car. It's a tri-point bar and it stays tucked way back, out of the way of things. That's weird that your bar wouldn't fit. This one bolted up just fine to the BCs. I'm hoping the rear coilovers go in as easily.

Also, I stained up the Plastidip on the front wheels, with grease. I'm probably going to peel them off soon and go back to silver for a while.
02 base -> 05 SRT ACR -> 96 sedan -> 99 R/T coupe -> 02 R/T -> 03 SRT

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Re: 2003 SRT DD

Post by MyNeonSaysHi » Mon Jan 14, 2019 3:28 pm

I edited. I meant front STRUT bar not SWAY bar. Yeah wouldn't fit, same DC one too. I made a thread on srtforums on it a while back.

You plan on dipping your RPF1's another color? Yeah, can't go wrong with the factory silver. Do that boost leak test! :)

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Re: 2003 SRT DD

Post by JeremyJ » Mon Jan 14, 2019 3:43 pm

How far off are the holes? Could you oval a couple out to make room, or is it too far?

I think I want them to be grey, like the color I painted the Silverstones on the R/T. I feel a little iffy about painting the RPF1s, though. I can dip them again, but I'd rather powdercoat them. Especially now that I know dip can be stained.
02 base -> 05 SRT ACR -> 96 sedan -> 99 R/T coupe -> 02 R/T -> 03 SRT

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Re: 2003 SRT DD

Post by JeremyJ » Tue Jan 15, 2019 3:59 pm

Aaaaaand now the car is vibrating during acceleration. Surefire sign of a bad axle. It's minor, but it's noticeable. Maybe these Trakmotive axles aren't so good after all. Fuck.
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Re: 2003 SRT DD

Post by Midnight_Rider » Tue Jan 15, 2019 10:31 pm

I had a Mopar one go bad within a few months. Just being honest (since everyone knows how I feel about OEM parts).
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Re: 2003 SRT DD

Post by MyNeonSaysHi » Wed Jan 16, 2019 4:52 pm

JeremyJ wrote:
Tue Jan 15, 2019 3:59 pm
Aaaaaand now the car is vibrating during acceleration. Surefire sign of a bad axle. It's minor, but it's noticeable. Maybe these Trakmotive axles aren't so good after all. Fuck.
Damn that sucks. I hear good things about Gator Axles and that theya re good for around 400wtq. That Chris Mimikos (sp) who has over 500 drag passes in his srt-4 ran those in his ride when he was stock turbo with no issues. http://www.gatorracingaxles.com/

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Re: 2003 SRT DD

Post by JeremyJ » Wed Jan 16, 2019 5:59 pm

I was going to get a set of those originally, but they're way more expensive. I got my axles for $100. The Gators are $500 for the pair. Like they say, you get what you pay for. I guess I'm going to drive on these wobbly ones until I can afford some nicer ones.
02 base -> 05 SRT ACR -> 96 sedan -> 99 R/T coupe -> 02 R/T -> 03 SRT

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Re: 2003 SRT DD

Post by MyNeonSaysHi » Thu Jan 17, 2019 4:27 pm

Wow didn't know they were that much. Guy on FB, forget his name but he parts out SRT-4's and usually has Mopar OEM axles.

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Re: 2003 SRT DD

Post by JeremyJ » Mon Jan 28, 2019 12:46 pm

I raised the front end about half an inch this weekend. Now it doesn't scrape coming in and out of my driveway. I inspected the axles a bit while I had the wheels off. The passenger side looks fine, despite making noise and now popping from time to time. The driver's side looks like this:

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It looks like it's spewing grease out from the boot. The last axle was doing this too, so I'm not sure how much of that grease buildup is new. Either way, I'm pretty sure these axles are junk. I'm going to have to spend some $$$ on better axles soon.
02 base -> 05 SRT ACR -> 96 sedan -> 99 R/T coupe -> 02 R/T -> 03 SRT

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Re: 2003 SRT DD

Post by MyNeonSaysHi » Tue Jan 29, 2019 2:09 pm

nice way to block the rust out haha. Looks like its coming out of that boost clip area on the inside. Unless it is rubbing on that mound of grease over your control arm. Hopefully that wasn't there before you installed the new half shaft

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