how to rebuild snowmobile shocks

how to rebuild snowmobile shocks

Rebuilding snowmobile shocks, such as the front and rear suspension shocks, is a task that can help improve your snowmobile’s ride and handling. It’s important to note that rebuilding shocks requires some mechanical skill, specific tools, and a clean workspace. Here’s a general guide on how to rebuild snowmobile shocks:

Tools and Materials Needed:

  1. Shock rebuilding kit (typically includes seals, O-rings, bushings, and other components)
  2. Shock oil (appropriate for your snowmobile)
  3. Shock absorber press or vise
  4. Wrenches and socket set
  5. Pliers
  6. Screwdrivers
  7. Safety glasses and gloves
  8. Clean rags
  9. Workspace with good lighting


  1. Safety Precautions:
    • Begin by wearing safety glasses and gloves to protect yourself from any debris or oil during the rebuilding process.
  2. Remove the Shocks:
    • Depending on your snowmobile’s suspension design, you may need to remove the shocks from the sled. Consult your snowmobile’s service manual for guidance on how to do this.
  3. Disassemble the Shocks:
    • Place the shock absorber in a shock press or vise. Follow the manufacturer’s recommendations for securing the shock safely.
    • Carefully disassemble the shock by removing the retaining rings, end caps, and other components. Take note of the order in which you remove parts.
  4. Drain the Oil:
    • Allow the old shock oil to drain completely from the shock body. You can do this by inverting the shock and gently tapping it to remove any remaining oil.
  5. Inspect and Clean:
    • Inspect all components for wear, damage, or corrosion. Pay special attention to seals, O-rings, and bushings. Replace any damaged or worn parts with those from your shock rebuilding kit.
    • Thoroughly clean all components, including the shock body and piston, using a suitable solvent or cleaner. Ensure they are free of dirt, debris, and old oil.
  6. Rebuild with New Parts:
    • Assemble the shock with the new seals, O-rings, and other components from your rebuilding kit. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions and ensure proper orientation and lubrication of the parts.
    • Install the end caps and retaining rings, securing them according to specifications.
  7. Fill with Shock Oil:
    • Fill the shock body with the appropriate shock oil according to your snowmobile manufacturer’s recommendations. Use a syringe or a measuring cup to ensure the correct amount of oil.
  8. Bleed Air:
    • Carefully bleed any trapped air from the shock by gently compressing and extending the shock shaft several times. This helps remove air bubbles and ensures proper shock function.
  9. Reinstall the Shocks:
    • Reinstall the rebuilt shocks back onto your snowmobile, following the service manual’s instructions.
  10. Test the Suspension:
    • Test the snowmobile’s suspension to ensure that the shocks are functioning correctly and that there are no oil leaks. Pay attention to any unusual noises or handling issues.
  11. Adjustments:
    • If your snowmobile has adjustable shocks, set the shock settings to your desired preference or as recommended by the manufacturer.
  12. Maintenance Record:
    • Keep a record of the shock rebuild, including the date and any adjustments made. This can help with future maintenance and troubleshooting.

Rebuilding snowmobile shocks can be a satisfying DIY project for experienced enthusiasts, but it’s important to have the right tools, knowledge, and access to the correct replacement parts. If you’re not comfortable with this process, consider having a professional mechanic or suspension specialist perform the rebuild for you to ensure safety and optimal performance.