Anyone who owns a Ford Super Duty would benefit from knowing some of the basic repairs that will need to be done to the vehicle, including how to replace ball joints. The ball joints are the connector between the steering column in your Super Duty and the front wheel struts. If you allow them to wear out, the damaged ball joints can influence the responsiveness of the steering, cause tire damage and increase the risk of an accident. It’s important to repair the Super Duty ball joints regularly in order to ensure that this does not occur. Read on for a brief overview of this process.
Tools and Materials
-Jack and jack stands
-Socket wrench and ratchet set
-Bolt removing tools
-Ball joint removal and press tools
Step 1 — Prepare the Vehicle
Jack up the front end of the vehicle and mount it safely on jack stands. Remove the front wheels of the vehicle and unplug the ABS sensor connector from behind the inner fender. Unclip the sensor and remove it from the vehicle.
Step 2 — Compress the Pistons in the Caliper
Pry away the caliper from the mount in order to compress the pistons, being careful that the caliper does not hang by the hose. Remove the bolts and set the caliper and its mount on top of the spring to compress it. Follow that by removing the brake rotor using your ratchet set.
Step 3 — Remove the Cotter Pin and Axle Nut
Pull the cotter pin out of the axle nut by using a set of pliers, then remove the axle nut itself using an impact wrench. Hit the axle with a rubber mallet a few times to lodge it in the wheel hub. Next, pull the wheel hub out as far as you can by hand.
Step 4 — Remove the Ball Joint
Pull the cotter pin for the ball joint out of the mounting nut on the joint. Remove the entire ball joint using a socket wrench.
Step 5 — Separate Out the Knuckle From the Joint
Use the ball joint removal tool to wedge the teeth of the tool in between the knuckle of the joint and the ball joint itself. Hit the other end of the tool with the rubber mallet or with a hammer in order to separate the two, then remove the knuckle from the joint setup.
Step 6 — Press Out the Joint and Replace the Ball Joint
Use a ball joint press tool to tighten the clamp on the joint, thereby pressing out the joint. Replace with a new ball joint inside the clamp. You can then reverse these instructions in order to install the new ball joint in the axle and return the cotter pin, axle nut, caliper and rotor before reinstalling the wheels and lowering the vehicle from the jack stands.