I've done quite a few of these installs already for plenty of people. However, I never really had the time to snap any photos because I just blast through the install, and finish quickly. Doing everything properly of course. Taking photos slows me down about 50 percent because I have to frame the shots, and plan for the DIY guide in advance. Then sometimes I have to go back, and put everything back together to take another photo because the shots didn't turn out how I liked.
A few precautions before you start. BE CAREFUL
with the ABS sensors and cables. Make absolutely sure to move them out of the way when doing the install. A quick mistake can easily cost you $200-300+ for each sensor! Treat them like leads on a bomb you're trying to diffuse lol.
Also, remember the suspension springs in the car are under very high tension. It can get dangerous very quickly if you don't do the install correctly. If you aren't very confident, then I would recommend you take it to a shop so you don't suffer any personal injury or damage the car. I assume no liability of damage or injury you sustain during or after the install if you don't do it properly!
Thanks to member Jon( jmtamu) for allowing me to use his car for the DIY photo opportunity.
Enough with the intro, now onto the guide!
DIY GUIDE START:
All stock 2014 GS350 F-Sport. Brand new beautiful car with only 500 miles on the odometer! Nice Vossen wheels just installed, but needing a slight drop.
First, jack up the front of the car from the appropriate lifting point. It's on the center for the front crossmember. Support the car with jackstands and then proceed to take the wheels off. I threw on some F-Sport Decals I made to see how it looked. I think they look pretty cool, but I took them off after the photos since I didn't know if Jon wanted them on there or not.
This will have to be removed. Instructions further down.
These bolts will have to be removed as well. The clip is the ABS sensor I was talking about. Be sure to remove that and be very careful with it!
Use a small flathead screwdriver to release the hidden clip.
Remove the sway bar end link. It's held on by a 17mm nut.
ABS sensor cable removed. DO NOT MISS THIS STEP or else you will regret it later!
Remove these two 10mm nuts as well. After that, swing the sensor cable out of harms way. I took this photo later after the springs were installed(hence the red springs).
Use needle nose pliers to release the clip. Then remove the 17mm castle nut.
Use a arm puller to release the ball joint. DO NOT HAMMER THE ARM!!! It's aluminum and will deform if you hammer the arm!
Pop and it's off.
Now pop the hood and peek inside. These are the protective covers for the AVS actuator motors. If your car is not equipped with AVS then these caps probably won't be there, and there will be no motors underneath. This is the motor that adjusts the stiffness of the shocks when going into Sport Mode.
Remove the three 14mm nuts holding on the covers.
Simply rotate the motor counterclockwise and pull up. Then swing the motor out of the way.
There are three more 14mm nuts underneath. These are the ones that hold the shock to the car. Remove these and the shock will drop down.
I didn't take many pictures here because I was wrestling the shock to get it out of the car. While the arm is disconnected(swinging freely), you have plenty of room to pull the shock out. Once you pull it out, lightly thread the nut back on just to hold the arm in place. This prevents the wheel spindle from hanging off the brake line and over stressing it.
Suspension removed from the car.
Use a spring compressor to compress the spring. Using air tools really helps here.
Make sure you have compressed the spring sufficiently, and relieved the tension. The spring will fly off(very dangerous) if you remove the nut without relieving the spring tension.
Spring removed from the shock body. Remove the strut mount(top piece) and place it on the new spring.
Stock front spring vs Tanabe spring.