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Old 10-04-2019, 11:58 AM   #1
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DIY Rear Shock Replacement on class C

I'm replacing the shocks on my Chateau 31E with some Bilstein HD shocks. I have completed the fronts (which were a pain because it's nearly impossible to get a tool on the upper shock mount nuts), and now I need to do the rear. I was wondering if anyone had any tips.



On the right rear, the upper mounting nut is not accessible because there are exhaust brackets and heat shields in the way. It looks as if the approach would be to remove the exhaust hanger brackets and drop the exhaust down, and then maneuver a tool over the heat shield to get to the nut. Has anyone done this and has any recommendations?
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Old 10-04-2019, 12:25 PM   #2
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Sounds like it would be a whole lot less hassle to just take it in and have a shock place do the work, seeing they have the tools and the know how.
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Old 10-07-2019, 12:25 PM   #3
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Well, I successfully changed the rear shocks. As expected, the driver's side one was a pain because of the exhaust heat shield in the way. I removed the muffler hanger bracket, and I was able to reach over the frame rail by the wheel well to get a tool on the top shock nut. After a long time with a ratcheting wrench turning a few millimeters at a time, I finally got an air ratchet on there to get the nut off and on.
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Old 10-07-2019, 03:17 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by jabrabu View Post
Well, I successfully changed the rear shocks. As expected, the driver's side one was a pain because of the exhaust heat shield in the way. I removed the muffler hanger bracket, and I was able to reach over the frame rail by the wheel well to get a tool on the top shock nut. After a long time with a ratcheting wrench turning a few millimeters at a time, I finally got an air ratchet on there to get the nut off and on.
Good for you for sticking with it! I usually do all my work, but wimped out when it came to installing the shocks. Unfortunately, they went with the old motorhome...
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Old 10-11-2019, 02:19 PM   #5
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How is the performance with the new shocks? Did you or do you plan to change the front also?
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Old 10-15-2019, 01:02 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by raffaelli View Post
How is the performance with the new shocks? Did you or do you plan to change the front also?

I had already replaced the front ones, and they are a huge pain as well. There is very little space between the frame and truck body, especially on the driver's side, so it's very difficult to get a tool on the upper mounting nut. And when you do get a tool on there, you can only turn it about 1/16 turn at a time, so it's a very tedious job.


The performance with the new shocks is good. I first got a good alignment, installed big Hellwig swaybars, and a Saf-T-Plus steering controller. Those things made a big difference in driveability and stability on the highway, and in steering feel, and no more getting pushed across my lane when a semi passes. The new shocks got rid of wallowing on non-smooth roads and improved ride quality a bit. Not as big an improvement as the other mods, but still noticeable.
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