I just had my oil changed and the shop said I need to have my upper ball joints replaced, (truck is make clicking noise when making sharp turns) I was thinking of doing it myself, Is the any tricks or special tools needed, I know I will also have to have the front end alined, should I go ahead and replace the lower ball joints while im at it, and if so are that hard to replace, thanks for any help.
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Upper balljoints are much much easier than lowers. Upper replacement ball joints come already pressed into new A-arms. No special tools required. Just mark the cams (look like big washers) on the bolts that hold the control arms, it will make the alignment easier.
Lower balljoints usually wear out first so make sure you only need the upper ones. If you don't need lowers, don't look for trouble as you can expect to replace the brake pads and rotors from having to beat them off and also you will need a good hammer and usually a balljoint press. You will also need a hub socket (I think 33m) to remove the spindle and will need to carefully seperate the tie rods. I just did them this weekend on my truck (second time in 3 years) so everything is fresh in my mind.
I ended up replacing the upper myself this yesterday, I ran in to one problem, in order to get the aliment right you have to replace the bolts that hold the arm on and also replace the ford factory washer with a cam washer, the nut/bolt and washer kit was 20.00 a side, but no one told me that at the parts house so I ended up redoing it all today, Good luck
When I did the upper ball joints I re-used the same bolts and cams. No one at the alignment shop ever told me any different and there seemed to be no problem with alignment. Did something happen to yours that they had to be changed?
Nothing was wrong with my original screw and etc, In fact I called a few other shops and they said you have to change them in order to aline if proper, I would just keep an eye on the front tires for more than regular wear,
The first time I did mine I did them with a guy who owns a front end shop and he never mentioned to me that I needed new ones. That was about a year and a half ago and no problems since. I'll have to watch for any problems, but I remember him telling me to mark the old cams so I could re-install them close to their original location.
Change Lowers As Long As Its Apart ,if Its 4x4 Auto Zone Will Lend You The 36mm I Think That Was It Socket Needed For The Axel They Will Also Lend You A Ball Joint Press Needed For The Lowers. I Saved $300 Doing My Lowers Myself
I disagree, the lowers are much more difficult and time consuming than the uppers. The uppers can be done in about 15 minutes while the lowers could take 2 or 3 hours with special tools. Since the lowers usually go first, the uppers are usually done at a different time some why do extra work if you don't need to?