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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm replacing all the bushings on Caliber, I'll use polyurethane in some locations and spherical/heim bearings in other locations....no rubber bushings.

Question: are there bushings between the subframes and the body, or are they hard mounted?
 

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I'm replacing all the bushings on Caliber, I'll use polyurethane in some locations and spherical/heim bearings in other locations....no rubber bushings.

Question: are there bushings between the subframes and the body, or are they hard mounted?
I'm replacing all the bushings on Caliber, I'll use polyurethane in some locations and spherical/heim bearings in other locations....no rubber bushings.

Question: are there bushings between the subframes and the body, or are they hard mounted?
I replace both front and rear sub frame myself brand new I bought all the nuts and bolts new from the dealership to do the job not one kit had bushing nor did the parts counter guy told me I needed them.It don't mean you can't do it the way you did and now that you did I wish I did the same as you but I'm fine with what I was able to do without paying$$$$ someone to do it for me.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
The Caliber is a unibody - the whole thing is welded together.
Oh yeah, I understand. My question is on the subframes that bolt onto the unibody which in turn have the suspension bolted to them....do they have bushings or are they bolted right to the unibody...metal to metal.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I replace both front and rear sub frame myself brand new I bought all the nuts and bolts new from the dealership to do the job not one kit had bushing...
It seems that the front and rear subframes do not have bushings between the subframes and the unibody...which is good. I don't want them.

If there were subframe bushings on this car, I would have all metal replacements created to replace them.

I will replace all of the other bushings in the car with a mix of polyurethane and spherical bushings. I'd replace them all with spherical bushings only if I could find sphericals for every position...but I can't, so some of the positions will get polyurethane.
 

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I'm replacing all the bushings on Caliber, I'll use polyurethane in some locations and spherical/heim bearings in other locations....no rubber bushings.

Question: are there bushings between the subframes and the body, or are they hard mounted?
Any suggestions on bushing replacement? I'm putting coilovers on my 08 SXT. Didnt know you could get Polyurethane... I am doing the adjustable Stabilzer bar links and Godspeed MonoSS coilovers. Also replacing the Strut Bushings. MOPAR (on front) and some other company (for rear) I was going to do the MOOG blue ones for front but a guy on here said he had issues with them and they don't look to be the same size at all. Also, Should I change the bolts? I'm not even sure which bolts I would need.
Gas Wood Auto part Metal Cylinder
Automotive tire Rectangle Auto part Composite material Tire
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 · (Edited)
Any suggestions on bushing replacement?

I was going to do the MOOG blue ones for front

Also, Should I change the bolts?
There is no need to change bolts if they are not damaged. I use stock bolts on my Caliber race car and have never had an issue.

If you are attempting this work yourself, the most important thing is to get a high quality calibrated torque wrench, and make sure that you torque each bolt to the exact specs called for in the factory service manual. I suggest going through the factory service manual and writing down the torque specs for each suspension bolt on a cheat sheet and then using that during assembly.

Do not attempt this job without a good torque wrench.

Also on tools, this next tool while not critical, will cut several hours off the job. My race team declared this tool to be the MVP tool of the decade: Milwaukee M12 FUEL 12-Volt Lithium-Ion Brushless Cordless 3/8 in. Right Angle Impact Wrench (Tool-Only) 2564-20

Here is what I did on bushings for my car. Warning: my car is a dedicated race car, you may not need or want some of this for a daily driver:

New front control arms with spherical/polyurethane bushings already pressed in (it says SRT4, but they fit all Calibers): Caliber Performance Control Arms 2008-2009 Caliber SRT-4 / 07-12 Compass / 07-12 Patriot

Moog blue polyurethane front and rear swaybar bushings. These come in several sizes to match the different swaybars that come with the various editions of the caliber. Make sure to order the correct size. These fit my car perfectly, work well, and have survived over 1,000 miles on track with no issues or noise. These are a great and cheap upgrade for a slight handling boost.

Rear camber arms with spherical bushings (It says Lancer, but it fits Caliber perfectly): Spherical Bearing Adjustable Rear Camber Arm Kit For Mitsubishi Lancer Sliver

Rear toe arms with spherical bushings (It says Lancer, but it fits Caliber perfectly): Mitsubishi Lancer (CY4A) 2008-16 Adjustable Rear Toe Arms With Spherical Bearings

Nolothane rear trailing arm polyurethane bushings: Nolathane REV102.0006 Nolathane Trailing Arm Bushings | Summit Racing

Siberian rear lower control arm polyurethane bushings: https://siberianbushing.com/catalog/DODGE/USA/CALIBER/PM/2008

You should also replace at least the front and rear engine mounts. If your car is for street use with occasional track use, I would use the stock engine mounts and plan on replacing them every 15-20k miles. New Caliber owner - a few technical questions

I used a front camber bolt kit to dial in more camber. Again, my car is a dedicated race car, you may not need or want this on a daily driver: https://www.amazon.com/Moog-K90474-Cam-Bolt-Kit/dp/B000HPQ1EW/

While I had the entire suspension torn apart, I took the front knuckle to a machine shop and had new wheel bearings pressed in, and I replaced the rear wheel bearings. Front bearings are press in, so you need a machine shop (unless you have a press in your garage). Rear bearings are an assembly that you can bolt in easily while you have the suspension disassembled.

I replaced my struts and springs with the SRT4 struts and springs. This was very easy to do compared to putting in coilovers and trying to get them adjusted correctly, but then, I was not trying to get to a particular "perfect lowered/dropped look" that I had mind, I just wanted to get the car somewhat lower and somewhat stiffer, and this is the easy button: Standard Caliber vs SRT4 Caliber suspension springs...

I also put in an SRT4 strut tower brace: DC Sports Front Upper Strut Tower Bar 07-10 Dodge Caliber 2.0L 2.4L Non-Turbo | eBay

After all of the above changes, the handling was transformed. My drivers have much more confidence pushing the car deep into the corners and we gained 6-8 seconds a lap (on a 2.5 mile circuit) compared to our stock suspension.

Our next step is to go with lightweight Mitsubishi Lancer EVO X MR BBS 18x8.5 wheels. They will bolt right in, look great and are more than 7 pounds lighter for each wheel vs Caliber SXT wheels. This will save 28 pounds of unsprung weight and will significantly improve handling and acceleration.
 

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There is no need to change bolts if they are not damaged. I use stock bolts on my Caliber race car and have never had an issue.

If you are attempting this work yourself, the most important thing is to get a high quality calibrated torque wrench, and make sure that you torque each bolt to the exact specs called for in the factory service manual. I suggest going through the factory service manual and writing down the torque specs for each suspension bolt on a cheat sheet and then using that during assembly.

Do not attempt this job without a good torque wrench.

Also on tools, this next tool while not critical, will cut several hours off the job. My race team declared this tool to be the MVP tool of the decade: Milwaukee M12 FUEL 12-Volt Lithium-Ion Brushless Cordless 3/8 in. Right Angle Impact Wrench (Tool-Only) 2564-20

Here is what I did on bushings for my car. Warning: my car is a dedicated race car, you may not need or want some of this for a daily driver:

New front control arms with spherical/polyurethane bushings already pressed in (it says SRT4, but they fit all Calibers): Caliber Performance Control Arms 2008-2009 Caliber SRT-4 / 07-12 Compass / 07-12 Patriot

Moog blue polyurethane front and rear swaybar bushings. These come in several sizes to match the different swaybars that come with the various editions of the caliber. Make sure to order the correct size. These fit my car perfectly, work well, and have survived over 1,000 miles on track with no issues or noise. These are a great and cheap upgrade for a slight handling boost.

Rear camber arms with spherical bushings (It says Lancer, but it fits Caliber perfectly): Spherical Bearing Adjustable Rear Camber Arm Kit For Mitsubishi Lancer Sliver

Rear toe arms with spherical bushings (It says Lancer, but it fits Caliber perfectly): Mitsubishi Lancer (CY4A) 2008-16 Adjustable Rear Toe Arms With Spherical Bearings

Nolothane rear trailing arm polyurethane bushings: Nolathane REV102.0006 Nolathane Trailing Arm Bushings | Summit Racing

Siberian rear lower control arm polyurethane bushings: https://siberianbushing.com/catalog/DODGE/USA/CALIBER/PM/2008

You should also replace at least the front and rear engine mounts. If your car is for street use with occasional track use, I would use the stock engine mounts and plan on replacing them every 15-20k miles. New Caliber owner - a few technical questions

I used a front camber bolt kit to dial in more camber. Again, my car is a dedicated race car, you may not need or want this on a daily driver: https://www.amazon.com/Moog-K90474-Cam-Bolt-Kit/dp/B000HPQ1EW/

While I had the entire suspension torn apart, I took the front knuckle to a machine shop and had new wheel bearings pressed in, and I replaced the rear wheel bearings. Front bearings are press in, so you need a machine shop (unless you have a press in your garage). Rear bearings are an assembly that you can bolt in easily while you have the suspension disassembled.

I replaced my struts and springs with the SRT4 struts and springs. This was very easy to do compared to putting in coilovers and trying to get them adjusted correctly, but then, I was not trying to get to a particular "perfect lowered/dropped look" that I had mind, I just wanted to get the car somewhat lower and somewhat stiffer, and this is the easy button: Standard Caliber vs SRT4 Caliber suspension springs...

After all of the above changes, the handling was transformed. My drivers have much more confidence pushing the car deep into the corners and we gained 6-8 seconds a lap (on a 2.5 mile circuit) compared to our stock worn out suspension.
Hmm... now that I have done even more research it seems like this may not be the best option for me. I purchased the coilovers from CARid.com and the adjustable Strut links on amazon. I am wondering if I should just return and go with the preloaded KYB struts/springs I was looking at. This is just a daily driver. I am on Stock rims and tires (not the hubcap ones) 215/60 r17. CarID said since shipping was free i will only be charged $9.50 return fee. If I just keep the same settings the Godspeed MonoSS coilovers came with, will there be much of a difference in going with Monroe/Moog/KYB loaded struts/Springs? Once again its a daily driver. Was not planning on pressing new bearings into the wheels. Just trying to fix leaky front struts and figured I should change the back ones too, as I am hoping this car will take me to 200k. I just had the CVT transmission fluid changed (and BOTH filters) at a dealership, and it seems to be running smoothly. I forgot these cars are UNIBODY and there is no frame. I am worried that all the stiffness and rattling from coilovers may cause more damage to the vehicle. My subframe looks to be in decent shape which is suprising because it spent some time in Rainy/Snowy oregon acording to the CarFax. (Very little though) Thank you for the tips.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Hmm... now that I have done even more research it seems like this may not be the best option for me. I purchased the coilovers from CARid.com and the adjustable Strut links on amazon. I am wondering if I should just return and go with the preloaded KYB struts/springs I was looking at. This is just a daily driver. I am on Stock rims and tires (not the hubcap ones) 215/60 r17. CarID said since shipping was free i will only be charged $9.50 return fee. If I just keep the same settings the Godspeed MonoSS coilovers came with, will there be much of a difference in going with Monroe/Moog/KYB loaded struts/Springs? Once again its a daily driver. Was not planning on pressing new bearings into the wheels. Just trying to fix leaky front struts and figured I should change the back ones too, as I am hoping this car will take me to 200k. I just had the CVT transmission fluid changed (and BOTH filters) at a dealership, and it seems to be running smoothly. I forgot these cars are UNIBODY and there is no frame. I am worried that all the stiffness and rattling from coilovers may cause more damage to the vehicle. My subframe looks to be in decent shape which is suprising because it spent some time in Rainy/Snowy oregon acording to the CarFax. (Very little though) Thank you for the tips.
Any set of fully adjustable coilovers will require several rounds of adjusting to get the ride height, camber and damping set to your liking.

When you bolt in the coilovers it might be just right for you, or it might be way off. There is only one way to find out.

If you car does not have much rust or other damage, there is no chance that the additional sitffness from the coilovers will damage your car. I push my Caliber harder that almost anyone and the body is holding up very well.

As I said in my post above, I did not want to mess with getting coilovers dialed in, so I just put in the SRT4 struts and springs and those are working very well for me... a bit lower, a bit stiffer, better handling and a pure bolt in with no fuss.

All that said, you have a daily driver Caliber with a CVT and are hoping it will get you to 200k miles. My advice, fix your leaky struts as cheaply as possible (pre-loaded KYB will be good) and save the rest of your money for another car. The Dodge Caliber is a cheap and poorly made car, they have serious rust issues, the electrical systems are terrible, and the CVT transmissions are a timebomb: at some point the transmission will fail and it will cost more than the value of your car to fix. Spend as little as possible to keep it going.
 

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Any set of fully adjustable coilovers will require several rounds of adjusting to get the ride height, camber and damping set to your liking.

When you bolt in the coilovers it might be just right for you, or it might be way off. There is only one way to find out.

If you car does not have much rust or other damage, there is no chance that the additional sitffness from the coilovers will damage your car. I push my Caliber harder that almost anyone and the body is holding up very well.

As I said in my post above, I did not want to mess with getting coilovers dialed in, so I just put in the SRT4 struts and springs and those are working very well for me... a bit lower, a bit stiffer, better handling and a pure bolt in with no fuss.

All that said, you have a daily driver Caliber with a CVT and are hoping it will get you to 200k miles. My advice, fix your leaky struts as cheaply as possible (pre-loaded KYB will be good) and save the rest of your money for another car. The Dodge Caliber is a cheap and poorly made car, they have serious rust issues, the electrical systems are terrible, and the CVT transmissions are a timebomb: at some point the transmission will fail and it will cost more than the value of your car to fix. Spend as little as possible to keep it going.
Can I leave back struts stock and put on KYB loaded struts? Why did you go with SRT4 springs over H&R or Eibach? Just cuz factory engineered for the car? I guess that is pretty important.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Can I leave back struts stock and put on KYB loaded struts?
Yes, that will work fine. If this car is just a daily driver you are trying to make last a few more years, this is your best option.

Why did you go with SRT4 springs over H&R or Eibach? Just cuz factory engineered for the car? I guess that is pretty important.
We could not find any specs on H&R or Eibach, compression rate in particular they do not publish. These may be fine for street, but they are progressive and might be too soft on initial compression for race.

SRT4 are not progressive and we trusted that more.

Longer term, if we want to do more with the suspension we will move to a higher end coil over. One of these two:



Here is my research from a year or so ago:

F/R pounds per inch
Base Caliber: 160/160
SRT-4 Caliber: 210/240
BC Coilovers: 448/336*
KW V1: 400/160*
*they will sell springs of any available spring rate for $80/each
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Any idea what is going on here? Only youtube vid I can find of godspeed coilovers on a Caliber. 2007 DODGE CALIBER GODSPEED COILOVERS
I am not sure what question you are asking about the video. The video has basically no content. It looks like he has an extra long sway bar end link and is going to connect it somewhere?

This is the guy that told me to get adjustable sway bar end links which I did.
If you are going to significantly lower your Caliber, then you might need adjustable swaybar end links to avoid significant pre-load on your sway bars. Google 'sway bar preload' for details.

My Caliber is about 2 inches lower than stock and I run stock end links. I have a small amount of preload, but it is not a problem (at least not that I notice).
 

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You should also replace at least the front and rear engine mounts. If your car is for street use with occasional track use, I would use the stock engine mounts and plan on replacing them every 15-20k miles. New Caliber owner - a few technical questions

I used a front camber bolt kit to dial in more camber. Again, my car is a dedicated race car, you may not need or want this on a daily driver: https://www.amazon.com/Moog-K90474-Cam-Bolt-Kit/dp/B000HPQ1EW/
Doesn't lowering it produce more camber? I got the bolts in case I want to level the tires back out. What is your experienve with it? I am not interested in Camber. Also, is it nice to have the adjustable links, as I already purchased them? I see there is a replacement rear strut bar but it requires drilling holes and grinding.
 

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Doesn't lowering it produce more camber? I got the bolts in case I want to level the tires back out. What is your experience with it? I am not interested in Camber. Also, is it nice to have the adjustable links, as I already purchased them? I see there is a replacement rear strut bar but it requires drilling holes and grinding.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 · (Edited)
Doesn't lowering it produce more camber? I got the bolts in case I want to level the tires back out. What is your experienve with it? I am not interested in Camber. Also, is it nice to have the adjustable links, as I already purchased them?
If you are targeting less than 2" of drop, then I would not worry about camber adjustment or adjustable sway bar links.

Also, very important, if you replace the struts either with factory type replacements or coilovers, you need to then go immediately get your car aligned. Taking the suspension apart will throw out the alignment and it needs to be corrected after you put it back together.

I see there is a replacement rear strut bar but it requires drilling holes and grinding.
The Caliber does not come with a rear strut bar (very few cars do), this one from Megan racing is an add-on bar to reduce chassis flex. This is very interesting for me and my race car, but not at all necessary unless you are planning on extensive track time in your car.

If this car is just a daily driver for you, I would send back everything and get the KYB pre-loaded front struts only, put them on the car and save the rest of your money for another (hopefully better made and more reliable) car.
 

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If you are targeting less than 2" of drop, then I would not worry about camber adjustment or adjustable sway bar links.

Also, very important, if you replace the struts either with factory type replacements or coilovers, you need to then go immediately get your car aligned. Taking the suspension apart will throw out the alignment and it needs to be corrected after you put it back together.

The Caliber does not come with a rear strut bar (very few cars do), this one from Megan racing is an add-on bar to reduce chassis flex. This is very interesting for me and my race car, but not at all necessary unless you are planning on extensive track time in your car.

If this car is just a daily driver for you, I would send back everything and get the KYB pre-loaded front struts only, put them on the car and save the rest of your money for another (hopefully better made and more reliable) car.
I'm already doing the struts. I got over trying to return them to save $`180. I wil; probably wish i kept if i return lol. Am I better off using the adjustable sway bar links if I already have them? I am doing a 1" drop all the way around if possible with stock wheels and tires. What do you mean by strut tower bolts? where are these located? I appreciate the help. My guy was going to help me do a basic alignment because mine is way out of whack but i will probably go get an alignment too. How much should I expect to pay for that? Won't most places not do alignment on Coilovers? There are so many variables with the adjustable camber plates i was going to leave them in factory setting.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
I'm already doing the struts. I got over trying to return them to save $`180. I wil; probably wish i kept if i return lol. Am I better off using the adjustable sway bar links if I already have them? I am doing a 1" drop all the way around if possible with stock wheels and tires.
You should be able to do 1" drop easily.

Check youtube for basic videos on installing coilovers, learn how to measure height before and after, how to adjust, etc.

Make sure you get a good torque wrench and use it to get each bolt to the factory spec. Many of the bolts need to be tighter (or looser) than you expect. You will put yourself at risk if you just wing it and tighten each bolt as hard as you can without a torque wrench.

What do you mean by strut tower bolts? where are these located? I appreciate the help. My guy was going to help me do a basic alignment because mine is way out of whack but i will probably go get an alignment too. How much should I expect to pay for that? Won't most places not do alignment on Coilovers? There are so many variables with the adjustable camber plates i was going to leave them in factory setting.
Almost any alignment shop should do an alignment with coilovers, including setting the camber.

Leaving the camber plates at their settings from the factory will probably not work well. They need to be set correctly with an alignment.
 
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