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How to Replace Rear Bumper on a 1970 Chevrolet Nova

The 1970 Chevrolet Nova shared many different components with its other third-generation model counterparts. The rear bumpers on the 1970 model is interchangeable with all 1968 through 1972 third-generation Nova models; this makes the task of finding an original equipment bumper easier when it comes to restoration projects. In order to remove the rear bumper from the vehicle, you must have the correct tools at your disposal. Due to the relatively simple design of the rear bumper, the removal and replacement process should not take very long.

Tools Used: Penetrating oil, Ratchet tool set with 9/16-inch socket, Replacement bumper

Replace Rear Bumper

Climb underneath the rear of your vehicle and locate both left and right side mounting brackets installed between the bumper and frame of the vehicle. Each mounting bracket will have bolts. It is much easier to remove the brackets from the frame (with the bumpers still attached) than try to remove the bumper from the brackets first.

Examine the condition of the bumper bracket bolts on both sides. Due to the age of the vehicle, there is a good change that the mounting bolts have seized or rusted into place. To avoid issues when attempting to remove the bracket bolts, apply a liberal amount of penetrating oil on the bolts and wait for several minutes before removing the bumper from the frame.

Grab a ratchet tool and install a 9/16-inch socket. Climb underneath the rear bumper and fit the ratchet on one of the bracket bolts. Turn the ratchet counterclockwise to loosen the bolt using a fair amount of force. Be sure to keep the socket aligned properly over the bolt while turning the ratchet to avoid stripping the bolt head. Repeat the process on the remaining bolts to remove the bumper with the brackets as a unit from the vehicle.

Remove the bumper brackets from the old bumper. The brackets are held to the bumper with four bolts each and the nuts must be removed before the brackets will detach from the bumper. Apply penetrating oil to the bracket nuts if they are heavily rusted or seized into place.

Inspect the old bumper brackets and determine whether replacements are warranted. Secure the old (or replacement) bumper brackets to the new bumper. Have a helper hold the bumper into place while you crawl underneath the vehicle and secure the bumper to the vehicle's frame rails with your ratchet and the appropriate-size socket.

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