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I just removed my strut assembly on my 98 Sentra SE. When I attached the spring compressor to the spring, I left the top and bottom coil free. After I removed the piston rod nut off, I took the spring off the strut and the top and bottom coil (no compression) was in the same position as the piston rod nut was on.
My question is shouldn't the coil be lossen up without a compressor?
Thanks for the help.
 

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Boxed Fox
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babaloo said:
I just removed my strut assembly on my 98 Sentra SE. When I attached the spring compressor to the spring, I left the top and bottom coil free. After I removed the piston rod nut off, I took the spring off the strut and the top and bottom coil (no compression) was in the same position as the piston rod nut was on.
My question is shouldn't the coil be lossen up without a compressor?
Thanks for the help.
The stock springs are preloaded slightly when they're put on the strut. Because of the flexible rubber pieces on the spring mounts, it might not look like it sometimes, but they are preloaded a little under an inch.

Over time, your springs will lose free length, and may become short enough to be removed from the strut without compression. This takes a long time (at least 10 years of street driving if it's a B14) to happen, and there's no guarantee that the spring will be short enough unless it's completely loose during full droop.

So yeah, you should always use a spring compressor when disassembling your stock strut assemblies, even if it looks like you can do without it.
 

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When I did my struts, I put a foot on top of the spring and zapped the top nut off with an impact wrench. But that's on my twelve year old B13, and was probably due to the explanation described above. But yeah, it is best to use a compressor just to be on the safe side I guess.
 
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