Me and The Critic were talking about Moog's control arm bushings(http://www.moogparts.com/pdf/problemsolv..._failure_EN.pdf
) for Toyotas last month. It seems like the Camry platform vehicles are known to eat through bushings when they hit the 150K mark or so. I decided to replace them for preventative maintenance and he was curious to see how well the Moog spherical bearing design worked compared to OE bonded rubber. While the install didn't go without a little drama which also included a new control arm that was damaged from pressing out the old bushing, I can say the new Moog bushings did improve how the van handled. The ride is slightly different than OEM, you can feel a little bit more of the road, but there's less "sway". The biggest improvement was in braking. The van no longer squats when the brakes are applied.
I do have some concerns about the long run - it seems like the Moog design uses a steel sleeve and ball, with a UHMWPE or PTFE bearing surface and a polyurethane boot. My concern is the boot getting softened and cracked by a petroleum based fluid or oil which leads me to my next repair - the steering rack.
We've noticed the passenger side control arm was coated in grime and the steering rack boot on that side was destroyed, I did notice a weep from the rack and ignored it as the PSF level wasn't dramatically dropping. It turns out that the passenger side steering rack seals on the 2004-2009 Siennas as well as the Highlander and Lexus RX of that vintage. Toyota officially says replace the rack, but they also released a TSB for the Sienna and Canadian-built RX that says a partial rack reseal can be done to fix the leak. I decided to do the latter option, worst case scenario I install a reman rack. Here's the Lexus TSB and a shop's answer to that problem:https://static.nhtsa.gov/odi/tsbs/2014/SB-10060695-2280.pdfhttp://carspecmn.com/steering-rack-leak-toyota-highlander-and-sienna-lexus-rx330-and-rx350/
I did the passenger side reseal(with The Critic's help)- I didn't take pictures and Toyota says to pull the rack from the car. Taking off the tie rod and rack boot was the easy part. I had to use a screwdriver as a chisel to spin off the rack cylinder end stopper to expose the locking wire and then it's spun in the opposite direction to remove the lock wire. The old lock wire can be used to hook onto the stopper's wire hole to pull out the stopper. The next part was to take out the inner bushing that has the seal. Someone on SiennaChat said to start the van, turn the wheel to the left lock and have hydraulic pressure pop it out. I saw no good can happen from that - I grabbed a piece of 3/8" hose, disconnected the rack's hard lines and slipped one end of the hose to one of the rack fittings and the other end to a blow gun and I was able to get the bushing out. It was all downhill from there, the new seal is updated. The bushing/seal simply slips on the inner rack(carefully). The hard part was to install the new lock wire, turns out a pair of long needle nose pliers was quicker and quieter than a screwdriver and hammer. Tie rod got reinstalled, new boot installed and almost a quart of fresh LV ATF to refill the system. I do periodic suck and fills for PS, so the fluid wasn't that bad.
I also rebooted the driver's side inboard CV joint with a OEM Toyota kit - and this van is good for a few more years of service. If you have a 2nd gen Sienna or Canadian-built RX, it might be worth taking on the reseal yourself so you don't need to install a Car-Be-Done or Chinese reman rack. I wished I've taken pictures to make it a tutorial and I was expecting the worse with all the SSTs Toyota called for but it wasn't terrible.