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2008 S80 Front strut replacment

Old 01-02-2018, 12:15 PM
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Default 2008 S80 Front strut replacment

Having just completed the task I thought I would share some of the things I learned along the way. By way of background, I have been turning my own wrenches since the mid 1970's and have more than a passing familiarity with suspension work though this is the first time I have worked on a P3 suspension. The car I am working on a one owner T6 AWD California car with about 105,000 miles on it so rusty bolts are not part of my adventure this time. I did the job in my driveway with basic hobbyist level tools such as a floor jack, jack stands, and wheel chocks as well as an O'Reilly tool rental program spring compressor. Remember that there are a number of potentially serious/fatal injury activities during this project so either educate yourself on safe practices or make sure you have your medical insurance card taped to your forehead and "911" on your speed dial.
- I purchased Bilstein Touring struts (and shocks) as well as Volvo brand upper strut mounts and bushings from IPD. Rear shock replacement was very basic so I will not spend time going over those in this post.
- While IPD did not have a listing on its web site for the upper and lower coil spring rubber insulators, the Ford branded originals were undamaged and could be reused on the new struts.
- Remember that in 2008, Ford owned Volvo so there are a number of FoMoCo branded parts you will encounter during this project and your car is not necessarily a collection of "Frankenstein" parts.
- To remove the struts for replacement you will need to separate the ball joint from the steering knuckle allowing the knuckle to be removed from the car providing clearance for the strut. Despite using a 3 pound sledge (BFH) and lots of muscle, the lower control arm on this generation S80 cannot be deflected downward enough for the old strut to completely detach from and clear the steering knuckle. At the lowest position the strut still needed about 3/4" more to clear the steering knuckle.
- The Harbor Freight ball joint separator tool part # 99848 or equivalent is needed.
- The pinch clamp at the top of the steering knuckle needs to be spread slightly for the strut removal and installation. Wedging an Allan wrench in the knuckle slot and twisting slightly can spread the pinch clamp, however my selection of Allan wrenches was limited. My technique was to turn the pinch bolt around (front to back) and use it to press against an Allan wrench that fit in the pinch clamp thereby using the pinch bolt to spread the pinch clamp.
- As extra pair of hands to assist in the re-installation of the new strut assembly into the strut tower from below is a major help
- While the internet is light on video assistance for strut replacement on a P3 chassis S80, I found a KYB video on the Land Rover Freelander that is remarkably similar to the Ford generation of Volvo S80s. Here is a link:

If you are contemplating an S80 strut job on a P3 chassis, hopefully this post will make your task somewhat easier. If you have other suggestions, please feel free to post them in this thread for others to see and use.

Last edited by JeffTepp; 01-02-2018 at 12:21 PM.
Old 01-27-2018, 06:00 AM
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Location: jackson michigan
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I did a 2001 s80 t6 before they had the pre built ones, it was pretty easy, did ball joints also, that's a different story.
Old 01-27-2018, 11:15 AM
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From what I gather by reading, the P2 chassis design allows strut removal without ball joint separation. 2008 appears to be the first year model with the P3 chassis design.
Old 02-18-2019, 12:57 AM
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Thank you very much for posting. I was that guy who spent 8 hours trying to push down to get the strut out of my 2008 XC70. Now I know what to expect for tomorrow.
Old 02-23-2019, 08:18 PM
Join Date: Mar 2016
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I replaced mine the mounting screws suck for the brackets.I used big rivets.
Old 02-23-2019, 08:20 PM
Join Date: Mar 2016
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OEM's are made in Germany after markets are China
Old 03-26-2019, 06:05 PM
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Hi. I recently completed a strut replacement on a 2006 S80. While all seems to have gone well, the front left top nut that holds the strut cap in place needs to be further tightened as the rubber on rubber from the cap 'squeaks' when turning. While trying to tighten the cap nut, i noticed the threaded post is turning, thus not solving the problem. Question 1: Should the center post turn or is something wrong? Question 2: I tried to use a 40 torx to hold the center post in place while tightening the nut with a wrench but managed to strip out the center torx in the process. Any other suggestions on how to tighten the nut without the center post threads turning with it?
Old 03-28-2019, 10:54 AM
Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: Ridgefield, CT
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Is the top of the strut's post slotted? if so you will want to grab there to keep the post from turning to allow you to torque the top nut to spec (not sure of the exact spec here - on my 850 it was ~50 ft lbs). Does the S80 strut have a single threaded nut or is there also a butterfly nut to tighten to spec? I've used vicegrips on the post as a last resort but its not recommended as that may score the chrome. You may be able to find a special tool for grabbing the top of the rod as well - ie .
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