Greetings. Does anybody have any information, or a link, to the replacement of the upper and lower ball joints on a 99 Durango, 4WD model? Maybe also the inner tie rods, as well? I would like to do the replacement myself, being a semi-skilled garage mechanic, with plenty of tools. However, the Haynes repair manual I have doesn't cover replacement at all. In fact, it suggest just buying an entire upper control or lower control arm instead. I know these bits can be replaced individually, though, so that is what I would like to do. Also, does anybody have any info on better aftermarket parts than OEM, and where to buy them? Much thanks in advance!
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Thanks for the reply. 98 bucks is a smoking deal for the Moogs. I have heard they are the best way to go, but of course a bit more expensive. My best price for all four is about $280-$325. Did you find your from a private seller, or possibly someone with a store, that you can IM or send me a link to? I will search on Ebay, and see what I can find. Napa also sells a line, their "chassis" series, that come with a lifetime warranty, and are a bit less expensive, only by about $30 bucks though, $58ea. for upper, $49ea. for lower. Thanks again for your info.
That which does not kill me, only makes me stronger!
Here is the ebay deal
Opened the box, had moog parts....
What a pain to replace.... I borrowed the ball joint puller tool from local garage. Plus, you gotta pull the hub nut off to get the axel out of the way to use the tool.
Be prepared to remove 1 1/4 nut torqued to 150ftlbs, needed a 3/4 drive breaker bar and 5 feet of pipe.
I've done it. Ok, first you have to undo the wheel bearing nut, (I believe it is a 1 1/4 socket) you have to break the bolt loose while the tire is on the floor. Remove the brakes and rotor. Remove the 3 bolts on the back side of the knuckle, and take out the wheel bearing (it is in one big peace). Then undo the tie rod end. Soak the ball joint end around the bearing with W-D Forty (that is what I used) for about 1 hour. Remove the bottom part of the wheel bearing with a puller or a separator. Then you can remove the ball joint. Some times you can hammer them out with a big mallet, but I used a 4"-2 finger puller. Put the fingers of the puller on the outside of the arm, and the bolt thread on the bearing and tighten it down and it will push out the bearing out and not screw up your suspension arm. If you smash the round end on the arm the bearing will no go back in so I suggest using the puller. To put it back in, make sure the grease port on the bearing and the one on the arm line up before you reinstall the bearing. You can buy a tool that will press them in but I did not. I guess I'm to cheap. I put a brick down and put a small peace of 2x4 side ways on a corner put the nut on the bolt of the bearing toward the end to make sure the threads did not get messed up, and lowered the truck down to put pressure on the 2x4. I put a peace of brass between the 2x4 and the bolt end with nut on and put pressure on it. Then I smacked the arm behind the bearing port to drive it in, (hay it worked). Then put everything back on in reverse. Make sure you grease them when your finished!
Well this will work.
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Here are the steps that I used to do this a couple of weeks ago on my 98 durango 4x4.
1. Remove front tire one side.
2. Remove center cap from rim of tire just removed.
3. Remove cotter key, castle nut cap and spring washer from the end of the axle.
4. Put the tire back on without the center cap on it. (Assuming stock rims)
5. Put vehicle back on the ground.
6. Loosen axle nut with vehicle on the ground. (I did not do this on one side and had to replace the whole drive axle assembly. I ruined one of the joints trying to break this bolt loose with the vehicle off the ground. $110 mistake you may not want to make.)
7. Re-remove the tire and support the vehicle.
8. Remove caliper and support it out of the way.
9. Remove the bolt that holds the brake line to the upper a-arm. (This will allow you to move the caliper and get it out of the way)
10. Use pickle fork (or your choice of tool) and drop the tie rod end from the steering knuckle.
11. Remove bolts that hold the front wheel bearing in and remove the wheel bearing.
12. Remove all inner bolts (6 or 8 don't remember) from inside end of axle and remove axle.
13. Use pickle fork (or your choice of tool) and drop the knuckle from the upper ball joint.
14. Use pickle fork (or your choice of tool) and drop the knuckle from the lower ball joint.
15. Set steering knuckle aside.
16. Use air chisel and chisel off the three rivet heads on the upper ball joint.
17. Once heads are removed use sharp punch bit in air chisel and drive the rivets down and out, and remove upper ball joint.
18. Bolt new ball joint in place and torque to spec. (50 -60 ft-lbs)
19. Use ball joint remover and remove lower ball joint. ( The right tool here makes this part very easy, otherwise it can be difficult)
20. Press in new lower ball joint. (The right tool here makes this part very easy, otherwise it can be difficult)
21. Put steering knuckle back on and bolt it to both upper and lower ball joints. (Make sure brake line is run properly before completing this step)
22. Torque to spec. (Sorry don't remember but it is in your chiltons)
23. Put wheel bearing back in and torque to spec. (Sorry don't remember but it is in your chiltons)
24. Put axle back in (slide into wheel bearing) and bolt up the inner bolts and torque to spec. (Sorry don't remember but it is in your chiltons)
25. Put axle nut back on and snug up, do not torque yet.
26. Put steering arm tie rod end back on and bolt it up and torque to spec. (Sorry don't remember but it is in your chiltons)
27. Put caliper back on and torque to spec. (Sorry don't remember but it is in your chiltons)
28. Put brake line clamp bolt back in.
29. Put tire back on and set vehicle on the ground without center cap in rim.
30. Torque the axle nut to spec. (Sorry don't remember but it is in your chiltons)
31. Re-raise the vehicle and put the spring washer castle nut and cotter key back on the end of the axle.
32. Put center piece back on rim and put tire back on. Torque lug nuts to spec. (Sorry don't remember but it is in your chiltons)
33. Set vehicle down and start the otherside.
Hope this helps.