Door Hinge Bushing: Keeping Your Door Aligned
It's difficult when your door starts to age and sag, it makes opening and closing it a noisy and trying chore. Many people immediately think that they have to replace the entire door, which is a costly replacement if there ever was one. The thing is that all it takes is a quick switch of your door hinge bushings to get that door up to par again. You might think it an easy thing to get considering how small they are. But here are a few things to look at.
Size and Shape
There are many different diameter sizes for bushings depending on both the load they have to bear and the location they are to cover. When picking out bushings for replacement, match the inner diameter and the outer diameters perfectly. Anything less or more will not fit at all.
It's important to look for bushings that possess at minimum the following qualities:
- Strength. If you can, find out the compressive strength capability of the bushing you want to get.
- Durability. Apart from being strong, it should resist fatigue.
- Thermal Conductivity. This is its ability to resist friction and heat.
- Anti-Corrosion. Resistance to rust is always an important option.
All these properties are usually indicated in catalogs or on online list, so do the research. It will save you from the very real danger of having the door fall off!
You can find bushings lower than $5 a piece-these aren't of reliable quality. Higher-quality bushings are actually very affordable and you can find one for between $10-15. What's a few dollars more for guaranteed quality?
Better still, if you shop online, you can even find full sets for the different hinges on the doors of vehicles of a specific make or model. Apart from being more affordable, these sets save you the trouble of having to measure and match each one.
Car Repair Basics: Replacing a Door Hinge Bushing
Door hinge bushings are small, circular metal pieces, designed to sit into your vehicle's hinge holes. If you're experiencing problems with your vehicle's doors, you might have to replace its doors. Once the doors sag, you won't be able to open or close them anymore. Here are the steps, tips, and tools needed to help you replace your door hinge's bushings.
Tools that You'll Need:
- Car jack
- Screwdriver set
- Door hinge bushings replacement kit
- Some door hinge pins are secured by E-rings or cotter pins. Refer to your vehicle's service manual for the proper procedures and tools on how to remove them.
- Check your replacement bushings and make sure that they are compatible to your vehicle's make and model.
Step 1:Open your vehicle's door and position the car jack it. Raise the car jack to support the door and take the pressure off its hinges.
Step 2: Locate your vehicle's power cords and detach them from the door. These power cords are wrapped in a rubber tube found between the door and the side of your vehicle.
Step 3: Set the rubber tube aside and gently pull out the cords. Locate where the plugs come together and put a screwdriver on its lip. Separate the two plugs by applying pressure on them.
Step 4: Look for the vehicle's hinges and pins. These pins hold the vehicle and door together. Use a hammer to release the pins from the hinges. Tap the bottom hinge pin from the bottom and the top hinge from the top to release them. Carefully lift the vehicle door from its hinges.
Step 5: Locate the old bushings and use a hammer to remove them from their holes. These bushings are circular pieces inserted into the holes to hold the pins. Use a screwdriver and insert it under the bushing's lip to pop the bushing out. Apply upward or downward pressure when removing these bushings.
Step 6: Make sure to inspect the holes for any cracks or signs of damage. Clean the hole with a brush and rags before installing a new bushing.
Step 7: Insert the new bushing into each hole. Check if the bushing's thick lip is facing the right direction; the bushing inserted into the top hole must face up, while the bushing inserted at the bottom must face down.
Step 8: Use a screwdriver to drive the bushings into the hole. Insert the screwdriver all the way down to its handle, and tap it until the bushing is in place.
Step 9: Lift the door, and align it to its hinges. Insert the hinge pins and hammer them until they are secure. Reconnect all the door's power cables and wires. Close the door and open it again several times to verify the installation.
Step 10: Repeat the process for the other doors that need bushing replacement.
Replacing your vehicle's door hinge bushings will take about 30 minutes for an expert DIYer and 45 minutes for a beginner. It's a fun project to do and it will save you some money!