Got my '03 Durango SLT back from my mechanic today after having the whole front suspension rebuilt @182,000 miles. Had all the components replaced with Moog parts that have GREASE FITTINGS on them, so that they can be kept lubricated !
What a world of difference in ride and handling!
One old front wheel bearing was about to fall apart from rust!
Had one unexpected new surprise ---- my thermostat housing had a corrosion leak--
badly! And the thermostat itself was a rusty POS !
Glad he spotted that and replaced them, because on a 5.9L engine they are buried
under the A/C compressor and hard to see. Went to a 180 degree value, to insure
it stays cool in the summer in FL.
He spotted some "hot spots" on the front brake rotors so, they will be next on the to-do list!
I have had quite a few things done to my Durango since I last bored you with pics.
So, here is an update:
#1- shows the whole new front end look. Besides completely rebuilding the front suspension,
I had the “oops” taken out of the right front fender, and had the whole front end refinished with
new paint and clearcoat --- and then added the new grill and new headlights!
These last items gave me fits at first --- they were aimed right down in front of the truck!
Put the aiming pattern on the front of my workshop shed but then had a better idea. MEASURED the
adjustment settings on the old lights and transferred those dimensions to the new ones. Then it only took a
little fine “tweaking” to make them perfect.
#2 – Some time ago I removed the crossbars from the roof rack, since I don’t carry stuff up there. This was
done because years ago read a report from Detroit engrs. how roof racks cut gas mileage by up to 10%.
All the factory dolled and hopped up SUV’s have them off. So now I do too!
#3- This car came with a class 4 Reese hitch, which was not factory, but aftermarket. BUT, they never did any
hitch wiring! So I looked at a factory install. They had a protection sleeve around the wiring connector.
We took a piece of Oval HD tubing and welded it to the bottom of the hitch, next to the coupler sleeve.
I had a complete wiring kit that I had bought some time ago for another job, but we used it here and have it
wired up now to use a 4-pin set-up. Later, if I add a brake controller we will do the other connections for the
7-pin coupler that we installed.
#4- When I got this car the whole rear bumper cover was loosw, and gouged in the left rear corner, like it
had been backed into something, and popped some riveted brackets loose. In the refurbish plan, I had my bodyman
straighten out the bent brackets underneath, refasten them and refinish the rear bumper, as you now see it.
He did a fantastic job all around.
This is the same bodyman who redid my Caprice wagon when we had the boo-boos on it. He has done another
fantastic job, but we did have a “glich” occur. His assistant slamed the right rear door and the glass fell down!
It turns out that doors’ regulator is broken, so we are now investigating a replacement.
Oh yeah, forgot to mention that we did new pads and rotors on the rear brakes before, but when the front end was rebuilt,
it was advised that we need to do the front brakes and rotors soon also.
We are also comparing some on-line pricing on switch panels to fix the door ones not working properly.
------- AND, I am still looking for a 16” spare wheel and tire! They are very hard to find used, and a new one is mega-bucks!
Still debating on a change in the exhaust system to improve the performance, along with the additions we already did for the
That is where I’m at ---- for now!
Shadetree, Thanks for the info. I'll have to look for that R/T badge. i think it would look pretty good on the front grill instead of the dodge.. good to know that the CAI gives such a good improvement to the MPG.. thanks again
After having my brake booster recall done not due to choice but failure of the brake booster and almost getting into an accident I figure while it was in the shop I had my buddy mechanic install my brakemotive rotors and pads set for the front and back on my citadel and wow what a huge difference on stopping power ! Would highly recommend this setup if they're planning to do brakes and or a bigger tire and wheel setup.