How do I get the struts appart? I have the spring compresser on there and it looks like I need a special wrench or something to turn the nut while holding the strut? A socket covers the part where you hpld the strut from turning.
Yes, there is a special wrench for removing the piston nut on struts.
It is like a big ratchet wrench (box end) with a big 12 point box that excepts a smaller socket to turn the nut off the strut. The socket has a hollow center that you insert your torx bit with extension to HOLD the strut piston.
The one I used had a floppy head. About the size as a nice half inch drive ratchet. Worked super nice.
If your old struts are going to be replaced, you could try to hold the piston with good sharp Vise-Grip pliers.
using an impact wrench on strut top nut is not recommended if you plan on reusing the strut. it can cause the strut rod to spin, potentially damage the teflon band on the strut piston, and/or loosen the piston nut inside the strut which can cause it to make noise and or lose damping.
use a crows foot and torx bit. I've also made my own tool in the past, I welded a nut to a socket so I could put a wrench on it and insert a torx bit inside to hold the piston rod.
I would also replace the springs if your replacing the struts. The springs are probably just as worn out, and lost their compression rate, Taurus springs are not variable rate as well. I used KYB strut pluses all around, and I'm happy with the ride, better than when the car was newer. Any issues getting those stupid pinch bolts and sleeves off? Mine took 3 hours to do the rears, and I don't even live in the rust belt!