TheBestCow's Build - Maintenance Baselining, Bushing Help, and Leaking Below Glovebox (1 Viewer)

Apr 26, 2020
Knoxville, TN
Hello, I acquired this 2000 LC last weekend. Currently sits with a little more than 242,000 on the odometer. It replaces my 2013 Honda Pilot EX-L (with just 64k, oof!) that was totaled by an idiot on the interstate (she hit someone else, spun, and her rear destroyed my front left quarter panel, suspension, and the killer... the shock tower). The vehicle was our family long-distance trip car. Enough room for kids' bikes, dog in the back, etc.

In case you're wondering about my username, chalk that up to being a teenager many, many years ago and using it on Bimmerforums. My first car was a 1995 BMW 318is, and I have something like 3k posts there, so I have kept the username on automotive forums. I should probably change it, but, here we are.

Maybe it's been this crazy health crisis in the country, maybe I'm just tired of boring Hondas, but here we are. Seeking a bit more adventure. Almost bought a Land Rover Discovery 2 but thankfully ended up in the LC camp.

I purchased this as a learning project for myself and my kids as well as our secondary vehicle to take the mountains/beach/wherever. To conquer all that come before us. To have fun.

Please feel free to explain like I'm 5 and forgive my potentially basic questions. I've always wanted to work on cars, but ... haven't. So here we are.

I'm big on sharing info -- have learned a lot here thus far -- and will try to do my best to document with photos, part numbers, videos, and posts so others can search/find/learn from my experience as well.

What I know has been done and have receipts for:
  • 231,755 miles
    • Front pads, rotors, calipers (the quote was $546 and noted new wheel bearings "was DRY") but I don't see a specific part listed on the invoice for bearings, just pads/rotors/calipers/etc.), brake fluid
    • Rack and pinion, power steering fluid
    • Outer tie rods
    • Rear pads, rotors, calipers
    • Drive belt
    • Denso spark plugs
    • Starter
    • Intake gasket
    • Right front CV Axle (I'm guessing boot, since it was $89.95?)
  • 237,260
    • Heaters Ts
What I don't have receipts for, but did speak to the mechanic that did some of the work:
  • OME 2.5" lift with 865 springs
  • SPC Upper Control Arms
  • Timing belt, water pump, radiator (less than 10k miles ago)
  • Rear locker from a 1999
  • Roof rack delete
  • 285/75R16 BF K02s w/full size spare with ~5,000 miles on them
  • New A/C Compressor
  • Snorkel, ARB Bumper, Warn VR10000 winch with steel cable
  • IPF spotlights installed in front bumper
  • Sony WX-900BT - my kids love how you can change the colors or it will automatically change on "rainbow" hah!
  • Dome interior lights converted to LED
Known issues:
  • Undercarriage has seen a lot of travel, a lot of red clay that wasn't washed off and has led to some surface rust
  • Sunroof tilt, when closing "bounces" back up. You can help it with your hand to stay down.
  • Sunroof slide works, but it looks like the tracks are quite dirty.
  • Seller stated no sun roof leaks, but sitting in my driveway during an absolute multi-hour downpour there was little dampness on the passenger side. Need to check the drain lines or consider a new seal?
  • Had dual-battery setup without fuses/isolator/kill switch for 2nd battery setup. I know nothing about electricity, so disconnected and zip-tied away to avoid accidentally connecting to batteries for now.
  • Hood struts shot.
  • The wood interior around the radio/AC controls is shot. Planning to heat gun/goo gone and remove.
  • Door locks don't react to YotaMD key. Works fine in door.
  • Driver, front door insert around door locks/windows is loose and wood is badly faded. Need to sort out if there is a broken plastic piece underneath, but either way would heat gun to remove the wood interior look.
  • Has some dings and scrapes, rear bumper paint is faded, tow hitch is rusty. None of that bothers me, which surprises me. It's kind of freeing thinking "Huh, if one of my kids ran their bike into... doesn't matter." Not a garage queen.
  • Small A/C leak somewhere -- seller said he gave it a charge last 2 summers, held charge fine
  • Wheels have pitting from caked on clay/dust/etc.
  • Windows are a little slow but not dreadful and work for now
  • Front left turn signal has some condensation
  • Code C1246 - Master Cylinder Pressure Sensor Malfunction - likely needs brake actuator soon
What I've done/about to do:
  • Oil change (have oil and filter, just haven't done yet; oh should I mention I've never changed my own oil and need to buy like a drain/oil catcher, etc.?)
  • Greased the 2 zerk fittings at front of front driveshaft, 1 at rear -- could not, for the life of me, get the grease gun to clamp on to the other 3. Would love any advice... but I tell you, getting rid of the thunk between Park and Reverse/Drive when first starting the car was a huge mental victory last weekend. Like hey, I did that!)
  • Hood struts (arrived, not installed)
  • Bought some white lithium grease and a brush to grease the sunroof tracks. Wondering how to clean them first...
  • Bought 5 door lock motors from eBay/China to be ready whenever these actuators fail (figure $25 in insurance to buy them now and have them when I need them is well worth it)
Based on the above, what do you think I'm missing from a maintenance/getting started list?

I'll reserve the next few posts for photos and then help to diagnose a suspension noise I'm having as well as a leak from something right below the glovebox.
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Apr 26, 2020
Knoxville, TN
Two Maintenance Items I Could Use Help With:
  • Suspension bushings
  • Part leaking below glovebox
Suspension Bushings:
Getting started on maintenance, and looking for some assistance on a few noises:
- when I go over speed bumps, kind of a bouncing sound from the front left
- when turning left and hitting an angled up surface (like turning into a driveway with a slight incline) a bit of a creak/thump

I figure noises like that are usually bushings and/or something loose.

This led me to check out the swaybar/stabilizer bar bushings on the front left and look cracked and shot:

as well as the other bushings for the stabilizer bar:

As noted in the for sale thread, this car has been used and seen some clay that wasn't powerwashed off.

I've read this post about a 200k bushing makeover and wanted to get thoughts on the above noises... did some digging on Partsouq and came up with the following list. It includes everything that I can tell for the stabilizer bar and link bushings, nuts, bolts, bracket, etc. I know I might be able to trim a few bucks to buy just the bushings only, but considering the cars history (and above photos) I don't mind to just replace it all:

Total PricePriceQuantityPart #
$ 1.06$ 0.5329418461001Nut, lock
$ 12.96$ 3.2449094802180Retainer, Cushion, No 1 (for front shock absorber)
$ 4.28$ 1.0749094801003Bush (for front shock absorber, RH/LH)
$ 23.78$ 11.8924882060032Link Assembly, Front Stabilizer, RH/LH
$ 13.56$ 6.7824881560111Bush, Front Stabilizer Bar, No 1
$ 10.99$ 10.9914882460100Bracket, Front Stabilizer, No 1 RH
$ 11.08$ 11.0814882460110Bracket, Front Stabilizer, No 1 LH
$ 2.12$ 0.5349011908B50Bolt, w/washer
$ 1.56$ 0.7829011910765Bolt, w/washer

Subtotal for bushing refresh: $81.39
Shipping: $24.07
Total: $105.46

  • Any other bushings, bolts, nuts, etc. that I should be looking at? For example, since I didn't purchase the OME kit, any chance the 'bounce' could be bushing/retainers for front shocks (like part # 9054017006)?
  • I don't believe lower control arms have been done, and potentially not the lower ball joints. Urgent? Also, any help with part numbers as I couldn't find on partsouq
I've also priced out (since I'm paying for shipping already with partsouq):
  • PCV Valve and grommet (+$11.98 in parts, +$0.00 in shipping)
  • Window mouldings ("Belt" mouldings, I think is what they're called) for all 4 doors as they are torn up: (+$185.01 in parts, +$15.06 in shipping)
  • Sunroof seal (need to test if needed, but pricing out since again already paying for shipping): (+$57.55 in parts,+$11.85 in shipping)
What's this leaking below glovebox:


The blower motor is squeaky... the wheel is dirty, I can see rust on the nut/bolt holding the wheel in the middle. Apparently this LC came with or was retrofitted for cabin air filters... which are not there. I've struggled to find consistent information on the filters and whether or not this came from factory this way or not. Cruiserparts appears to have some filters -- $20 -- do I need two (thought I read something about how they stack on top of each other)?

My guess is the above leaking part is... A/C evaporator? Condensor? Saw something on the 80 series forum that was a kit to clean out the system from nastiness that builds up, but no idea. Haven't had a chance to take apart, would love your advice. Drips... I dunno, 20-30 times when blowing AC at full blast. Not a constant stream, but pretty consistent dripping for a while.

Also, when set to dual blowing (so, upper vents for face and lower vents for feet), nothing comes out on driver's footwell side.

I mention all of this in case it is all related.
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Apr 26, 2020
Knoxville, TN
Imposter syndrome hitting me hard tonight. I know it is normal when you're trying something new, but definitely having a bit of that "you idiot, you thought you could do this and you clearly have no idea what you're doing" running through my brain. Persevering through it!

Parts arrived from PartSouq and Rock Auto.

Completed the first oil change of my life last weekend. Went great aside from many, many paper towels giving their lives in service. Not having to jack up the truck was awesome and made everything so easy. I did have a lot of dripping onto the under engine cover when I removed the oil filter, not sure if I was supposed to remove it or not.

It legitimately took me 4 hours because I did a 5 tire rotation as well and was jacking up one wheel at a time, and I was triple checking everything with the oil change, but by golly I did it.

While under the vehicle for the oil change, discovered lots of clay in the bottom of the ... radiator. I think it was on the radiator. A thorough bath is due once I get the sunroof seal done. Seal came with the PartSouq order, but I read how using a 3M stripe off wheel would make like a lot easier, so I ordered one from Amazon and it comes on Monday.

I was going to do the bushings today, but discovered in setting my parking brake as a test, that it doesn't stop the vehicle. Considering I know there is an ABS code and I'll likely need to replace the ABS Actuator in the near future, this is now an even more pressing issue.

So I watched a couple of YT videos, read some threads, got the rear of the car on jack stands, got the wheels off.......... and then read the diagram wrong, thought the bellcrank stopper was the adjusting bolt, and snapped that sucker right in half. (I forgot to PB Blast it first.) So, add that to the parts needed.

I also, for the life of me, couldn't figure out how to use the star wheel. There was no adjusting plug in the rotor, but when I stuck my screwdriver in I didn't feel any wheel or movement. Does it have to be at a certain position (one of the videos had it at the 6 o'clock position) in order to work? Or is it more likely mine is crusty and hasn't been adjusted in a while due to the lack of plug?

And no, I didn't remove the bellcrank tension springs because I couldn't figure out how to do it without pushing on the spring so much I thought I'd break that, too. Would love any pointers... would like to figure it out before buying a stopper and then needing to go back to buy a tension spring or two!

I did try adjusting just from the lock nut and turn buckle to see if I could get any kind of engagement (Yes, yes, I know I'm supposed to work from the brakes to the turn buckle to the lever) and no dice. Got it to turn, also crusty, but unless it is supposed to go all the way to the engagement mechanism (to the left) then I feared going too far. The cable also made a popping, for lack of a better term, sound when I was turning the turn buckle from the clip mounted in the middle. Felt like it was relieving tension but not sure if that's accurate.

And lastly, I DID get the hood struts swapped out with the help of a neighbor. But I dropped one of the washers from the old struts (the classic thinking before it happened "hmmm, I should get my magnet to catch that" but not doing anything...), grabbed my magnet, stuck it down below the second battery, the plastic cover of the magnet came off and fell down as well and I didn't notice, the tool latched onto the right front quarter panel, and I dragged a nice 6" scratch into the paint. Idiot!

The truck's got dings and scratches so it shouldn't bother me, but because it was my own stupidity... I'm annoyed.

Oh, and with a battery tender from Harbor Freight discovered the 2nd battery is 9.2v and essentially not salvageable.

So yea. Imposter syndrome is real. I'm still a rookie. Bu hey, the hood won't come down on my head now, I changed the oil and rotated the tires, and did the same on my wife's car to save some money. So we've got some wins to bolster morale for the time being.
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